Even though this CVT model performs well around town, if you wanted to go out of town the manual is a better drive. It is a bit more economical. however you’re not likely to see the difference on a daily basis. The one to choose is the Mid-spec SE trim which comes at a good price and includes everything you require. The cost of the manual model begins at £14,595 which is much more appealing for owners than the fully-equipped £16,305 EX Navi.
We have had a drive in the new Honda Jaxx already which its manual gearbox and top-spec EX Navi trim, but what if we compare the not so equipped SE with a CVT auto?
For all the specs available, the auto is £1,100 more expensive than the manual. It includes the regularly variable transmission (CVT) system that we are now familiar with and is also used for vehicles such as the Nissan Juke and the Toyota Prius. The automatic gearbox is the type which doesn’t come with the usual gears, but continuously adjusts ratios to get the best out of the engine output.
It does perform rather well though for a vehicle which was produced mainly for urban environment. As long as you are carefull with the throttle and make sure you don’t drive with your foot on the floor everywhere you go, then the performance of the Jazz’s CVT is quite good. Around town it is quiet and efortless, making stop-start traffic and tight roads nice and simple.
It has a bit more difficulty on the open road as if you give too much power then the engine has the tendancy to shout. At motorway speeds it does calm down, however if you use the throttle to overtake then the engine will again shriek at you. On a performance level the CVT isn’t that different to the manual – 0.62mph takes 12.2 seconds compared to 11.3 seconds – however when you are in a rush it just appears to be a bit more cautious.
Strangely enough, Honda have included steering wheel-mounted paddles, which we have tested before and, as far as we are concerned, don’t make a lot of change to the engine’s revs. We would just allowe the engine and box to do their normal job, so we wouldn’t bother using the paddles.
However a small number of people will perchase the Jazz for its sporting credentials. This mid-SPEC se is our favourite out of the collection as it still focuses on practicality and kit. It improves the basic S model’s suto lights, cruise control and Bluetooth by including alloys, parking sensors to the front and rear and a seven-inch touchscreen.
It also comes with the fantastic Driver Assistance Package, which has things such as Traffic Sign Recongnition, Forward Collision Warning, Cross Traffic Monitor and Lane Departure Warning. For a lot of people the £1,100 price increase from the S to SE is money worth spending for these reasons alone.
The vehicles all come with the excellent Magic Seats, which only require one canny, simple movement to fold even have passenger seats which fold-flat which is great if you often carry lenghtly things in your vehicle. If we were to go for the non-Navi model though, then we would be £605 better off and we could just spend £90 on a portable TomTom.