Practical Performance

Honda turns up the heat and value for the Jazz Sport. It’s possibly everything to all women.

With a robust reputation for exceptional multi-tasking and being able to consistently punch above its weight, the Honda Jazz carved out a loyal customer base in South Africa. Versatility with those nimble urban proportions proved popular. Ingenious, perhaps. The latest Jazz continues to refine and modernise those traits but until now there’s never been a Sport version of Honda’s seminal hatchback. If that sounds like a good idea, read on…

What it lacks in Type R firepower, the Jazz Sport (replacement for the Dynamic model) delivers on muscular visuals front and rear. Park this Jazz alongside the standard model and the changes are quickly illuminated through the lower and wider attitude.

Up front there’s a sleeker grille with a contrasting flow of chrome and black gloss edges. Above the sculpted front bumper are the bright LED lights complimented by a set of fogs. Linking front and rear are the meatier sills and we couldn’t stop there without mentioning the rear boot spoiler. The white exterior paint accentuates the black 16-inch wheels but other colour combinations are just as powerful. We drove a red Jazz Sport with those black wheels and the two darker colours added much presence to the car’s character.

We’re pleased to note that Jazz Sport has not compromised what makes the rest of the range so endearing. Clever design with a myriad seating and luggage options still holds true – Jazz uncorks exceptional interior room suitable for a family but not overbearing when driven alone. The Sport model differentiates itself through neat touches associated with sporty driving; red stitching on the seats, centre console and steering. Honda has upgraded the audio system to six speakers – Bluetooth audio, USB compatibility comes standard. So does the 7-inch touchscreen with reverse parking camera.  In fact, the Jazz Sport packs all the specification (safety and convenience) you’d find in many of Honda’s larger SUVs.

But what of the Sport moniker, you ask? Is it faster? Get in, press the start button and the rehearsed combination of generous power output and a zesty, free-revving engine in a lightweight package comes to the fore. Part of Honda’s Earth Dreams resolution for efficient clean power, the engine uses just 5.6 litres per 100km, does 0-100kph in under 10 seconds and reduces the effort of driving thanks to the CVT gearbox. Uprated brakes shorten stopping distances.

Add to that a host of active safety systems to maintain stability and control in all weather conditions or emergency situations and Jazz Sport truly impressed us all at Fitness Hers. Priced the same as the outgoing Dynamic model but with more standard specification loaded in the price, Jazz Sport combines everything we love.


Honda coined the term Magic Seats for the Jazz – a clever design that allows the seats to fold flat, doubling the boot volume and protecting the interior.