Monday, March 24, 2014

Used Car Review - Honda Jazz (2008-2014)

You're graduating and you want your own set of wheels as a present, Myk Belmonte gives you a suggestion.

2008-2014 Honda Jazz

With manufacturers getting obsessed in extracting much space in a small vehicle, there are tons of magic tricks here at the expense of compromising one aspect of the vehicle. Honda had done it especially on the part of making the passenger feel at home.

Debuting at the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show, the second generation Jazz became more larger in length, fixed the chassis to a stiff one, and made way for a hybrid engine. The basics which made the Jazz a household name when it comes to interior flexibility. For the second time, it won the Car of the Year Japan award when it was introduced. September 2013 saw the launch of the third generation Jazz in its home market.

Late 2008 saw the arrival of the second generation Jazz to the Philippine market. It gained more length at the expense of a huge price increase (near rivals of the same displacement cost a hundred grand less) but still the benchmark of all hatches, despite the arrival of new entrants. It is available in S (1.3 only) and V (has the 1.5 engine standard) models but special edition models in Modulo and Mugen flavors are available. By the time you read this, a third generation model will be launched in the Philippines by this year.

Value and Costs
You may not need to proceed to a Honda dealer just to get a brand new unit especially changes were minimal (unless you count the color palette updates). Early units would cost P440,000 - basically half the price of a brand new one - while latest models are priced at the tune of P700,000 with units sold from May 2011 onward having a remainder of their warranty. Do take note Japan imported models were introduced in February 2012 having a slight difference in standard equipment while models wearing either Modulo or Mugen body kits were made as an option later that year.

Keeping this baby would not necessitate the need to sell your liver and kidney. When it comes to parts they are obtainable and attainable. A recall that involved units manufactured between September 2008 until April 2010 for their spring which may cause friction and noise in the engine if not performed, may put the engine to failure.

Exterior and Interior
We imagine this: Honda engineers giving the Jazz some growing pills and vola, the length of the vehicle was stretched. The 1.3 models were conservative looking while the 1.5 gets aggressive looking body kits and the base of the overpriced Mugen variant. Besides, the exterior speaks for itself until we lead to the next paragraph.

The famed three cargo configurations are still retained which is a strength. Put the seats up for the humans with some space for their luggage while fold them down for some serious business (which is, ehem, hauling cargo). Control layout is on the logical side, placed within reach of the driver.

The second generation Jazz gave a new engine technology for the L13A 1,339cc carrying 100hp at 6,000rpm and 127Nm at 4,800rpm: the VTEC technology. The other option is the L15A 1,496cc which dishes out 120hp at 6,600rpm and 145Nm at 4,800rpm. The 1.3 engine, despite having VTEC, would fit the city landscape especially going fast with a full load isn't its habitat. The 1.5 gives you that extra power whenever needed although the engine may get strained, it is less evident.

Driving Impressions
Good thing it retains the driving dynamics the previous model has. It loves to be tossed around the twisties at the expense of a firm ride and noise intruding the cabin. The latter can be experienced when the driver goes fast enough.

There is no other hatchback that can balance fun moments and doubles practicality. The Honda Jazz can still acquit itself despite the influx of new competitors.

The Good:
  • The space master
  • Easy to drive
  • Reliable
The Bad:
  • Firm ride
  • Some road noise
  • Not that fuel efficient than the model it replaced
The Pick: 1.5 V

Engines: 1,339cc L13A and 1,496cc L15A I4 gasoline
Power: 100hp @ 6,000rpm (1.3), 120hp @ 6,600rpm (1.5)
Torque: 127Nm @ 4,800rpm (1.3), 145Nm @ 4,800rpm (1.5)
Fuel Consumption: 8-10km/L (city), 11-13km/L (highway) (*estimated and varies)
Transmission: 5-speed manual (1.3 only), 5-speed automatic
Suspension: Front independent McPherson strut, rear H-shaped torsion beam

Price (New): P705,000-P1,007,000
Price (Now): P445,000-P700,000
Rivals: Ford Fiesta, Mazda 2, Suzuki Swift, Toyota Yaris
On Sale: 2008-2014

Honda Cars Quezon City - (02) 712-6850
Honda Cars Kalookan - (02) 366-5701
Honda Cars Pasig - (02) 988-1288

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