HONDA’S SIG­NA­TURE TUNE

Wanneroo Times - - Driveway - Craig Duff

IF you’re pre­pared to buy a 2017 Honda Jazz, the top-spec VTi-L can be yours for about $26,560 on the road.

The fea­tures list in­cludes leather-trimmed seats with heaters in the front pair, a sev­eninch touch­screen with sat­nav and Blue­tooth con­nec­tiv­ity (though no An­droid/Ap­ple mir­ror­ing), cruise con­trol and key­less start.

Honda has sweet­ened the deal with a seven-year/un­lim­ited kilo­me­tre war­ranty and seven years of road­side as­sist.

Ser­vic­ing in­ter­vals are or­di­nary – ev­ery six months/10,000km – and the first six vis­its will cost $1668.

Ver­sa­til­ity is the Jazz’s sig­na­ture and the VTi-L does it with more style than its cheaper si­b­lings.

The five-door hatch’s in­te­rior eas­ily takes four adults with a huge (for the class) 354L of cargo space.

The rear seats fold 60-40 and ef­fec­tively dis­ap­pear into the floor to ex­pand the boot vol­ume to an apart­ment-shift­ing 1314L.

The down­side: the qual­ity of ma­te­ri­als isn’t re­flected in the price. The plas­tics largely don’t look and feel ‘main­stream pre­mium’, as in some ri­vals.

The Jazz is a five-star ve­hi­cle based on ANCAP’s 2015 as­sess­ment. Ac­tive driv­ing aids are not avail­able on the baby Honda, so you have to rely on six airbags and a strong struc­ture; the Jazz earned a crash rat­ing of 36.58/37.

The Honda holds its own around town but lacks the sporty feel you’ll find in a Mazda2, largely

due to steer­ing that is too lightly weighted to give much feed­back and sus­pen­sion that jolts over mid-cor­ner lumps.

The con­tin­u­ously vari­able trans­mis­sion is pretty in­of­fen­sive and only drones when you're push­ing hard on the ac­cel­er­a­tor.

You no­tice it more be­cause light hatches tend to use lit­tle in­su­la­tion in the wheel arches to save weight.

Ver­dict: The go-to choice for those want­ing big things from a small car, the Jazz doesn’t lead the pack as a fun drive but is sim­ply the sen­si­ble op­tion.

Cheaper ver­sions are just as ver­sa­tile as the VTi-L.

The Honda Jazz de­liv­ers big things from a small car.

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