JIMS: HONDA JAZZ HYBRID

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Green machine!

The Jazz IMA Hybrid is the third model employing Honda’s Integrated Motor Assist technology to boost both performance and economy. Its arrival coincided with the release of an updated Jazz line-up featuring a series of exterior, interior and dynamic improvements.

Enhanced ride comfort and flexibility, new nomenclature and the much anticipated return of the highly regarded CVT gearbox are among the update range’s key elements.

The Jazz IMA Hybrid is only available with the CVT gearbox, and offers a standard features list similar to the latest Elegance petrol-engined model.

IMA combines the Jazz’s efficient i-VTEC petrol engine with an electric motor that boosts total output on demand to improve performance, while still achieving exceptional fuel consumption.

While the contemporary lines of the Jazz remain instantly recognisable, Honda has given the coachwork a subtle nip and tuck. The new front and rear bumpers not only emphasise the car’s sleek shape, but have also been designed to reduce drag.

The slim A-pillars and cab-forward silhouette have been retained, but an aero-styled grille has been added to augment the redesigned bumper. These changes benefit aerodynamic efficiency.

Unique to the Jazz Hybrid are a clear grille and a discreet ‘Hybrid’ logo, while the front grille, headlights, and tail lamps all feature subtle blue chrome accents.

Inside, the most noticeable change is the adoption of a darker dashboard material in a single colour, which is combined with a new seat fabric to enhance the ambience of the cabin.

Again, the Hybrid model is differentiated from the petrol versions, this time through the use of blue backlighting for the instrumentation. Petrol models employ amber lighting.

The popular Magic Seats have also been improved. The rear seatbacks can now recline by 73 mm, enhancing rear passenger comfort.

The Jazz Hybrid combines Honda’s 1 339 cc petrol engine, developing 65 kW and 121 Nm, with an IMA electric motor that contributes an extra 10 kW and 78 Nm.

Performance is sprightly, with a 0 to 100 km/h sprint time of 12,2 seconds, and a rated top speed of 174 km/h. However, it is the fuel consumption that will be the biggest drawcard.

The Jazz IMA Hybrid achieves a combined cycle fuel consumption figure of 4,4 litres/100 km. CO2 emissions are an equally admirable 105 g/km – which means the Jazz Hybrid is exempt from emissions tax.