Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Review: 2018 Honda Jazz VX Navi

One of the first cars that I ever drove was a Honda Civic and compared to the other cars my family had at the time, I loved its feel. In this regard, I had high expectations for the Jazz. My initial doubts were not just about its size, but about how functional it can be for someone like me—a daily driver, likely to be caught in traffic 80 percent of time, with an allergy towards tight parking spaces and with little patience towards road hoarders.

When the 2018 Honda Jazz VX Navi pulled up, the first thing that came to mind was: this was the way a small hatchback should be: rounded edges, a subtle dip on the hood, an ample (but shapely) backside, and for the lack of a better word, small. It’s also worth noting that the “classic” Honda frontage is back—ending an entire generation of experiments that made the Jazz look anywhere between a droopy eagle or a Transformer that skipped quality control.

From the get-go, the physical exterior looked solidly well-built, as one would expect from any Honda vehicle. I was expecting the inside to be as (sub) compact as it seemed to be so imagine my surprise when I opened the door, got behind the driver’s seat, and realized how much room there actually was. Color me impressed.

Impressed, because for a small car, there was a lot of room to go for. The front seats cradle you almost like buckets with great levels of support, while the rear seats actually have Premium Economy-levels of space (well, Business Class if you fly PAL). In addition, the backseats fold and contorts in all sorts of ways affording you more cargo space than your average hatchback or even small SUV.

These are important elements that made the Jazz a practical choice. While sub-compacts are ideal for solo drivers, the wide interior allows seating of four normal-sized individuals or five petite ones. The low loading height and regularly-cut trunk space means it can fit one medium-sized luggage and one carry-on trolley with the rear seats up. With the seats down, it can take two medium-sized luggage with room for smaller bags.

Then, there’s the driving. The 2018 Jazz performed as you’d expect from a truly modern Honda. Though the 1.5-liter i-VTEC engine’s shove is gradual, there’s enough power for it to be classified as “peppy.” This, along with its light and controlled steering allows any driver to easily transition from slow-moving traffic to highway speed without compromising ride and control. This baby hatchback is solidly built.

There are some areas for improvement though. First, is its suspension. While it runs well on smooth roads, it tends to stiffen up when going over uneven surfaces. Sometimes, a jolt or two would enter the cabin unfiltered. Next up, fuel economy could be better. Although the route took it mostly through traffic jams (average speed of 11 km/h), the computer read out stayed at 7.5 km/L—rather poor for a small, supposedly frugal car.

Overall, I would rate the 2018 Honda Jazz VX Navi a four out of five. The exterior, especially in this shade of Modern Steel Metallic is premium while the interior gave it the right updated feel. It’s also well-built and roomy.

While the Jazz may be designed to support the mobile lifestyle of solo drivers or young couples, it also makes for a great first car. It goes back to what makes the Honda experience so great. Besides the upgraded features, it retains what is most important: offering today’s drivers a well-built vehicle that helps build their confidence on the road over time. That is what the Jazz can provide: a car that is easy to use, maneuver, and park; in a fresh, modern style that you won’t easily tire of.

Words by Gen Tiu

2018 Honda Jazz VX Navi
Ownership 2018 Honda Jazz VX Navi
Year Introduced 2014 (Updated: 2018)
Vehicle Classification Sub-compact Hatchback
The Basics
Body Type 5-door Hatchback
Seating 5
Engine / Drive F/F
Under the Hood
Displacement (liters) 1.5
Aspiration Normally Aspirated
Fuel Delivery EFI
Layout / # of Cylinders I4
BHP @ rpm 120 @ 6,600
Nm @ rpm 145 @ 4,800
Fuel / Min. Octane Gasoline / 91~
Transmission CVT
Cruise Control Yes
Fuel Economy @ Ave. Speed 7.5 km/L @ 11 km/h
Dimensions and Weights
Length (mm) 3,989
Width (mm) 1,694
Height (mm) 1,524
Wheelbase (mm) 2,530
Curb Weight (kg) 1,062
Suspension and Tires
Front Suspension Independent, MacPherson Strut
Rear Suspension Torsion Beam Axle
Front Brakes Vented Disc
Rear Brakes Drum
Tires Bridgestone Turanza ER370 185/55 R 16 H (f & r)
Wheels Alloy
Safety Features
Airbags 2
Anti-Lock Brakes (ABS) Yes, with EBD
Traction / Stability Control Yes
Parking Sensors No, with Rear Camera
Other Safety Features Hill Start Assist
Exterior Features
Headlights Halogen
Fog Lamps None
Auto Lights No
Rain-sensing Wipers No
Interior Features
Steering Wheel Adjust Tilt/Telescopic
Steering Wheel Material Urethane
Seating Adjustment Manual
Seating Surface Fabric
Folding Rear Seat Yes, 60/40
On-Board Computer Yes
Convenience Features
Power Steering Yes
Power Door Locks Yes
Power Windows Yes
Power Mirrors Yes, with Fold
Climate Control Yes
Audio System Stereo
# of Speakers 4
Steering Controls Yes


  1. Still halogens, drum brakes, only 4 mediocre speakers, fabric seats, no leather steering wheel,no rain sensing wipers, only 2 airbags at 985k. This is one clearly overpriced car that only fanboys would buy.

    1. I forgot to mention that it doesn't have rear parking sensors and that it runs on 93 octane, wheras a certain competitor packed with features, better design and quality while still being cheaper and japanese runs on 91 octane only. now that is one value for money car for this segment. i find it weird that people would buy a subcompact for space.

    2. I wonder what competitor car is that? I also find it weird that people would buy a subcompact for a sporty drive.

    3. Here comes the Obnoxious Mazda fanboys. LOL

    4. You cannot deny the level of equipment that the Jazz VX lacks for its price.

    5. Better this than a Mazduh

    6. Meron ka? Kasi yung akin naman may sensors, backup camera, runs on 91 dahil yun ang nakasulat sa fuel tank, at may leather option naman. Mas maluwag din siya sa Mazda.

    7. It's funny that these honda fanbois only defense to their car's shortcomings is space, as if they're taller than 6 feet. To tell the truth, even Toyota is now better than Honda. If practicality is what you're after, nothing beats Toyota. The new Corolla will blow competitors away.

    8. How do you know? And practicality? The CH-R is poor compared to the HR-V. The pang-taxi Vios and ugly Yaris has no magic seats, all Toyotas drive poorly, and the new corolla is the very definition of bland.

    9. Toyota is only better here in the Philippines because of the colloquial mindset of most that Toyota is so-called uber reliable, practical, lots of spare parts, easy to maintain, high resale value... and the list goes on... Such pathetic creatures!

    10. Most reliable car brand and Toyota all over the world hindi lang sa colloquial mindset na sinabi mo. Honda is declining in quality surveys

    11. Sa palagay mo applicable yang sinasabi mong car reliability report na yan sa mga oto rito sa Pinas??? US survey lang yan, not applicable here in PH. Tsk! Tsk! Tsk!

  2. Sakit ng ulo lang yang cvt na yan ng honda. Barkada ko 5 years pa lang jazz problemado na cvt. 300k++ pa quote sa casa replacement

    1. Syempre hindi aaminin ng barkada mo mga katangahan nya sa paggamit ng CVT. Malamang nagco-coast sa neutral yang special kid mong barkada lol

    2. Grabe naman yung 300k replacement + labor pa. Buti pa conventional AT pwede pa ma repair. Yung CVT parang wala ako narinig na me na repair. yung iba sinubukan pero dagdag gastos lang.

    3. Kung first-gen CVT pa yan ng Honda, may problema talaga yan. At the same time, CVT is designed as per spec ng sasakyan. Modifying to increase power would definitely shorten the life of CVT.

    4. I agree, 1st gen CVT's of Honda was proven to be problematic. However as with regards to modifying to increase in power, CVT's can withstand it albeit in a limited capacity as compared to conventional A/T.

    5. In short, CVT's are still CVT's no matter how they try to improve it, it's still garbage.

    6. Yeah, you or the CVT is garbage?! Such non-sense... Tsk! Tsk!

    7. ^Have you even driven a CVT? It has an awful feel to it. Not to mention the boring drone.
      CVT= continuously Variable Trash

    8. Nobody buys CVTs for the feel. They buy it because it is the most fuel efficient transmission. Ano ba kayo? Masyado kayong bata mag isip, puro driving feel na lang. Grow up. Act like a man, not a boy.

    9. Imagine the horror of driving it everyday, you'll dread to drive instead of being eager ti drive. Fuel efficient? Have you read the article? It has a disappointing fuel economy despite being equipped with the so called fuel saving transmission. It's not childish, it's choosing something that you can enjoy driving while having great fuel economy. I would'nt daily drive a car with a CVT, I've experienced it and I would rather sit in the back than drive

    10. To each his own! Why always rant having to drive a horrible CVT or so it is garbage. If CVT is horrible and/or garbage, Honda and other popular car brands shouldn't stick out the CVT to their cars. Such pathetics! You would always like your cars to sound like Formula 1 cars. Sheesh!

    11. Dami kasing tao na feeling sports car sasakyan nila. Akala nila kung sino silang race car driver.

    12. Tell that to the honda fanboi ricer racers and their smoking tendencies.

    13. No! Tell that to ALL 120kph ricers (Honda or not) together with clothesline hangovers at the back...

    14. Baka Fit surplus nga lang kayang bilhin ng mga yan, feeling naka Civic RS na.

    15. The Jazz RS is only all show with the ricey bodykits but no performance upgrade, lame.

    16. Same goes as well for Toyota's TuRD bodykits but no performance upgrade, lame.

    17. As if your beloved Mazda doesn't follow suit. Imagine a Mazda 2 and 3 with sporty bodykits but doesn't have performace upgrades.

      Way to go Mazda fanboys

    18. Mazda speed, pero no upgrades in terms sa speed. Only aesthetics.

    19. At least it comes with additional safety features and the 3 with the Bose sound system for the added price. In the jazz, you pay for only for the aesthetic kits and colored stitches, lol.

    20. ^Just wun'dring, at the end of the day, even with that so-called additional safety features and Bose sound system of the MazDuh, and it's free 3 year Yojin PMS, why it is not a salable like Honda or even Toyota for that matter??? Again, just wun'dring... Maybe because of the hefty price tag of its required specialize EFB that is triple or more the price of a standard car battery???...

    21. Actually 2017 was a great year for the Mazda3:

    22. ignorant mazda hater burned.

    23. ^Then what's your case Mazda fanboy?!?!?

  3. Cvt of nissan is the best in industry

    1. Indeed! Nissan's CVT is the best problematic of all!...

  4. Premium? The exterior in that color might look the part but when you get inside, everything feels cheap.

    1. For a Honda fanboy, everything's premium even if it's cheap.

    2. It looks like the much hated previous generation Vios tadpole

    3. Mas cheap sa mukha mo? Nakapasok ka na ba sa Fiesta at Yaris?

    4. ^Amen to that!

    5. The new Fiesta and Yaris have better interiors than this cheap ass city. Though, personally, I'll choose the city for the overall package.

    6. ^ FYI, this is a Honda Jazz article you stupid prick.

      And since when did the Fiesta and Yaris had a better interior than the City? The TOTL City is still better in all fronts than those cars you've mentioned.

    7. @Anon 3:15 PM

      Natawa ako. Base City nga lang mas ok na sa Vios at Fiesta Sedan eh. Saka sa JAZZ po ito.

  5. If u want sportiness and performance, ford fiesta ecoboost is the right choice for u

    1. The sportiness and performance to bring you quickly to the casa, for repairs. LOL

    2. Ahahaha! So much for your Fix Or Repair Daily ride... May won engine of the year award before, but man, after sales service of FORD here in the Philippines is very sucky. With a DCT transmission which is very good at first, but will not last in the long run.

    3. Yeah just the like the problematic CVT of Jazz

    4. ^ And YEAH, that's the problematic 1st generation of CVT of City/Aria and Jazz/Fit. The CVT's used in the current models of Honda is the 2nd generation which is not problematic anymore.

  6. i have a 2015 ford fiesta ecoboost, and until now wla namang issues sa dct tranny or sa engine, it only depends on how u use it, im just wondering, why many are still doubters eventhough the fiesta have won the engine of the year for many years

  7. Honda jazz rs review- just copy this review of the vx navi and put riced body kits, black rims, and contrast stitching, thats it, and another thing, remove the vx badge and put rs in it,

  8. I've just noticed that there seems to be something wrong with the FC figures...

    The Jazz RS does 9.74 km/L @ 13 km/h as per CarGuide review
    The Jazz VX Navi does 7.5 km/L @ 11 km/h as per CarGuide review

    Why is there a huge difference when both have the same engines? And I think the RS is heavier but it has a better FC figures?

    One of them has to be wrong.

    1. Different drivers.

      The RS was driven by me while the VX Navi was written by a contributor.

  9. Thanks for the review, I'll buy the mazda 2 RS over this due to the level of equipment and the choice of transmission.


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