Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Third-Generation Honda Jazz Revealed Ahead of Japanese Debut [VIDEO]

The Honda Fit, also known as the Honda Jazz, is a subcompact car produced by the Japanese manufacturer Honda from 2001 to present. It was first introduced in June 2001 and is now in its second generation. The name "Jazz" is used in Europe, Oceania, the Middle East, Africa, Australia and most parts of Asia, while the name "Fit" is used in Japan, China and the Americas.
Marketed worldwide and manufactured at ten plants in eight countries, its sales exceeded 3.5 million by July 2010.It shares Honda's global small car platform with several other models of the manufacturer: City, Airwave,Mobilio, Mobilio Spike, Freed and Freed Spike.
Honda released hybrid gasoline-electric versions of the Fit in Japan in October 2010 and in Europe in early 2011.The Honda Fit EV, a limited production all-electric version, was released in the United States in July 2012.
Models
The Fit is sold in 6 variations. All Fit/Jazz models throughout the world utilize one of seven or more distinct codes. They are found in the vehicle’s identification number
Fit/Jazz
GD1: 1.3 L L13A i-DSI Inline-four engine 2WD (Europe: 1.4L)
GD2: 1.3 L L13A i-DSI Inline-four engine 4WD (Japan only)
GD3: 1.5 L L15A VTEC Inline-four engine 2WD
GD4: 1.5 L L15A VTEC Inline-four engine 4WD (Japan only)
GD5: 1.2 L L12A Inline-four engine (Europe)
GE3: 1.3 L L13A i-DSI Inline-four engine 2WD (2007 Europe 1.4L model. Made in China)
City/Fit Aria:
GD6: 1.3 L L13A i-DSI Inline-four engine 2WD (Fit-Aria)
GD7: 1.3 L L13A i-DSI Inline-four engine 4WD (Fit-Aria)
GD8: 1.5 L L15A i-DSI/VTEC Inline-four engine 2WD (Fit-Aria)
GD9: 1.5 L L15A i-DSI/VTEC Inline-four engine 4WD (Fit-Aria)
Drivetrain and platform
Depending on the region, the Fit is available with a 1.2, 1.3 (in Europe referred as 1.4L model), 1.5-liter i-DSI engine, or 1.5-liter VTEC engine. All four engines are based on Honda’s L-series engine family. The eight-valve i-DSI (intelligent dual and sequential) engines use two spark plugs per cylinder, allowing gasoline to burn more completely; therefore, fuel consumption and emissions are reduced while maximum torque at mid-range rpm is maintained. The 1.5 L VTEC engine has the typical 16-valve configuration that can maximize output at high rpm.
Honda Fit's L-series of engines also provides the castings and reciprocating mass for Honda Marine’s 75 and 90 horsepower (67 kW) outboard motors, the BF75 and the BF90.
The engines are mated to a five-speed manual, five-speed automatic, or continuously variable transmission (CVT), depending on the region (CVT not offered in United States). Two forms of the CVT are offered: the regular, and the CVT-7. The CVT-7 offers a smooth, continuous flow of power, or seven simulated "gears" controlled by paddle shifters on the steering column.
The Fit uses Honda's Global Small Car platform, which is also used by the Fit Aria/City (a sedan version of the Fit), the Airwave (a station wagon version of the Fit Aria/City), the Mobilio, and the Mobilio Spike.
Seating and cargo
The Fit's fuel tank location under the front rather than rear seats — combined with a compact, semi-independent, H-shaped torsion beam rear suspension — allows for a lower load platform and increased cargo volume. Noted for its "class leading utilization of interior space and maximum flexibility for people or cargo," the Fit offered approximately twice the storage space behind its rear seat compared with the Toyota Yaris hatchback.
Ultra Seat: The fuel tank and rear suspension layout also allows a multiple-mode seating system, marketed by Honda as Ultra Seat (Asia) and Magic Seat (North America, Oceania), with four seating modes — and a fifth in certain markets:
Normal: seats are in their normal position with seating for five.
Utility: Either section (or both) of the 60:40 split rear seat folds and lowers onto itself, creating a flat load surface and increased cargo area.
Long: The rear seat behind the passenger folds down similar to utility mode, but the front passenger seat folds backward, leaving an area that can hold items as long as 2.4 meters (7.9 ft).
Tall: Either section (or both) of the rear seat cushion fold up against the rear seat back, allowing for an area of 1.28 meters (4.2 ft) in height.
Refresh: With the headrest of the front seat removed, the front seat back can be folded down to form a lounge-style sitting area. (available in certain markets)
According to the Fit's chief engineer, Kohei Hitomi, the Magic/Ultra seating system's design "came about after the design team had spent long hours watching people in supermarkets and how they stored their things."
Ultra Luggage: In certain markets, Honda offers the Fit/Jazz without a spare tire, a system marketed as Ultra Luggage, where the spare tire well is used as part of a 'Tall' mode cargo area behind the rear seats. A flexible flap allows three configurations of rear storage: Regular, Tall and Upper/Lower mode.
Production
The first generation Fit was produced at six locations, in Suzuka, Japan; Sumaré, Brazil; Guangzhou, China; Ayutthaya, Thailand; Karawang, Indonesia; and Laguna, Philippines. Models produced in Japan were for Honda's home market, Europe, some Asian markets, Australia (till the end of 2005), Canada and the United States. Models for the Malaysian, Singaporean and Vietnamese markets are produced in Thailand. The Brazilian factory supplied Mexico, all of Latin America and the Caribbean. Chinese models were sold in mainland China, and products from a dedicated export plant were exported to some left-hand-drive European markets, while Jazz models in Hong Kong were imported from Japan.
Regions
The Fit is marketed in different ways and has different characteristics throughout the world, depending on which region it is sold in.Japan
Two engines (1.3 i-DSI and 1.5 VTEC) were offered, each with a number of trim lines ranging from the basic "Y" to the sporty "S". The 1.3 L i-DSI was available with only the regular CVT automatic. The 1.5 L VTEC model with the CVT-7 was added in September 2002. A five-speed manual was added in June 2004 for FWD model with the larger engine. Unique to the Japanese market, the Fit is also available in 4WD. Starting at a price of about JPY1,123,000 is the basic 1.3Y model. At the top of the range is the 1.5W four-wheel-drive version for JPY1,743,000. A bewildering range of options and accessories are available at most levels, including Honda's HDD GPS Navigation System called Internavi with its 6.5-inch (170 mm) color screen. This system incorporates TV and FM radio.
Europe
Like Japan, the European market also has two engines available. The European-only 1.2 i-DSI is offered as the base model in many countries, and can be purchased only with a five-speed manual transmission. The 1.4 i-DSI is identical to the 1,339 cc 1.3 i-DSI sold in Japan, but marketed as a 1.4 L to differentiate it from the smaller 1.2 L engine (ironically, at 1,244 cc, it is closer to 1.3 L than the bigger one is to 1.4 L). 1.4 L models started out well-equipped with the 5-speed manual standard and the CVT-7 available as an option.
All European models have ABS with disc brakes on the front wheels and drum brakes or disc brakes on the rear ones. Side airbags are standard on some high end models.
The car has a good reputation in Europe with the UK's biggest automotive survey, performed by the motoring show Top Gear, revealing that the Honda Jazz was the second best vehicle on UK roads (after the Honda S2000), as voted by UK car owners in 2006. The popularity of the Jazz has made it Honda's best-selling model in the region, comprising 30% of all European Honda sales. Top Gear also went so far as to state that Honda Jazz (along with the Toyota Yaris) is the closest to reality car that money can buy, meaning that a Honda Jazz can cover the majority of the automotive needs that man has today.China
Local production and sale of the Fit (Hatchback) in China started in September 2004, roughly one year after the launch of the sedan version 'Fit saloon' (City/Fit Aria) in September 2003. The trims are similar to those in Japan; with the combination of 1.3 i-DSI, 1.5 VTEC, five-speed manual, and CVT, there are four models in total.
United States and Canada
The Fit went on sale in the United States and Canada in April 2006 for model year 2007,replacing the Civic hatchback for North America and becoming that market's chief entry-level subcompact. The Civic continues to grow in size and price and was reclassified as a compact (larger than a subcompact) in 2011.
In keeping with Honda's safety initiative, the Fit was offered in North America with power windows, standard side airbags, side-curtain airbags, and ABS, in addition to the mandatory front airbags. Due to differing safety regulations, North American Fits have larger bumpers, and a longer front clip, than the rest of the world, resulting in a slight increase in overall length.
For the 2008 model, US models feature the Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) to alert the driver of low pressure in any of the four stock wheels.Unlike some systems, the system in the 2008 Fit notifies the driver that a tire is low, but not which tire. The Fit narrowly missed qualifying for the Canadian government's $1,000 rebate, which is only offered for cars that meet the new federal fuel efficiency rating. Honda Canada Inc. decided to reimburse consumers the rebate for 2007, and a revision to the federal ratings allowed the 2008 Fit to qualify for the $1,000 rebate.
The Fit was offered in two variants in the United States (Base and Sport), and three in Canada (DX, LX and Sport). Differences were primarily limited to cosmetics and standard equipment, since all models shared the same 1.5 L 109 hp (81 kW) engine and standard five-speed manual transmission. A conventional five-speed automatic transmission was optional, instead of the CVT found throughout the rest of the world. The Fit Sport received paddle shifters mounted behind the steering-wheel when ordered with the automatic.
For 2006, 27,934 Fits were sold in the United States. A total of 56,432 Fits were sold in the United States in 2007.
The 2008 Honda Fit was largely unchanged from the 2007 with the exception of the TPMS and new windshield wipers that abandon the large rubber blade design to a more traditional rigid plastic with thin rubber blade design. MSRP was also increased by roughly US$100. Total sales in the United States for the year were 79,794, an increase of almost 41% over previous year.
Reception
Honda marketed the Fit as "Small is the New Big". Car and Driver magazine described that "[n]ot only is it endowed with an impressive array of standard features and an upscale interior, but its dynamics rival the responses of cars with much fancier pedigrees and price tags." The magazine even cited its lane-change number of 71.4 mph edged the best run by a Ferrari F430 Spider F1 tested.And the car was included in Car and Driver's 10 Best Lists for three times. In May 2006, Fit was placed first in a Car and Driver comparison of seven economy cars that included Nissan Versa and Toyota Yaris. Consumer Guide said in its review, "While prices seem steep for a subcompact (compared to the Toyota Yaris and Nissan Versa), this is one in name and exterior size only; it's really a small wagon that challenges some compact SUVs for room while getting significantly better fuel economy".Mexico
Fit, sourced from Brazil, was launched in October 2005.Brazil
Honda started local production and sale of Fit in April 2003 when Brazil became the second production base, after Japan, for Fit. In Brazil, though initially was available with the 1.3 L i-DSI engine only, eventually the Fit has the same engines as the Japanese models (all Brazilian Honda cars have engines imported from Japan) and there are three trim levels available. Base model LX features the 1.35 i-DSI engine (which is marketed as 1.4 in Brazil) and driver side airbag. The second model in the range, the LXL, features the same engine from the LX, but adds some extra equipment: passenger side airbag and ABS. Top model EX has essentially the same equipment as the LXL, but comes with the 1.5 VTEC engine. All models are available with the five-speed manual or the regular CVT automatic. There are neither side airbags nor side curtains available for the Brazilian version. Also, the radio antenna is positioned differently, as it is near the front of the roof. Honda started selling the 2007 model in February 2006 with new bumpers and some cosmetic changes.
Alcohol (ethanol) and gasoline hybrid Fit: Honda Brazil will start the sales in mid-December 2006 only for 1.35 i-DSI. 80 hp (60 kW) at 100% gasoline and 83 hp (62 kW) at 100% alcohol. It also works with any intermediary mix rate. There is an additional gasoline fuel tank on the right side under the triangle window for low temperature starts. This ensures a good start on cold days if the main tank has been filled with alcohol.
Honda Fit was awarded by Quatro Rodas magazine as Best Buy in 2005 and 2006, and as the car with happiest buyers in 2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007.South Africa
Launched in 2003, it was sold as the Jazz in South Africa. It is available with the 1.3 i-DSI (badged as a 1.4) or 1.5 VTEC engines both offered with either manual or CVT (automatic) transmission.Chile
All Honda Fits sold in Chile are built in Brazil, except for a few early 2004 models. Until 2007, all three Brazilian trim levels were available LX, LXL and EX, with five-speed manual or CVT automatic transmissions, but for 2008 models, the 1.5-liter 16-valve VTEC engine is no longer available, while the Brazilian LXL, with 1.35-liter 8-valve i-DSI engine, is sold as EX.
No alcohol powered engines are available in Chile.Australia
The Jazz/Fit offering in Australia follows, to a degree, the Japanese versions (excluding the 4WD models), and was released in Australia in October 2002.
The base model GLi is powered by a 1.34-litre i-DSI engine, and includes air-conditioning, a CD player, two front airbags, ABS brakes, EBD, a trip computer, remote central locking, a transponder coded immobilizer, power steering, windows and mirrors. Standard is a five-speed manual gearbox, with the CVT auto being an optional extra.
The VTi adds the 1.5-litre VTEC engine, "sports" trim, and side mirror-mounted turning indicators. Optional is the 7-speed version of the CVT auto with Formula 1 inspired gear shift paddles on the steering wheel; the VTi-S has a "sports" body kit, fog lamps, and 15-inch (380 mm) alloy wheels.
A "dot" on the "J" in Jazz on the rear of the first-generation model indicates whether it is powered by a 1.5 or 1.3-liter engine. The 1.5 litter version (VTi) has a blue dot and 1.3-litre version (GLi) has a red dot. The second-generation models can be differentiated by the presence (VTi) or absence (GLi) of audio controls on the steering wheel. The body kit for the VTi-S has changed since its introduction in 2003. The picture to the right illustrates the differences. The white Jazz VTi-S in the middle is a December 2003 model, while the left silver Jazz is a 2004 VTi with optional bodykit, the right silver Jazz is a 2004 model VTi-S.
Since its introduction to Australia, the Jazz has been imported from Japan. However in late 2005, Honda Australia began importing the Jazz from Thailand. The cheaper production costs allowed Honda to make significant price cuts across the Jazz range, although the color range has been reduced to six (compared to 12 in Japan).
In 2006, the Australian Honda Jazz received a few minor cosmetic facelift. At this stage a free trade agreement was established between Australia and Thailand which resulted all Australian Honda Jazz models being made from the Thailand factory. The model and trip variants remained the same excluding the cosmetic changes.
All models were upgraded to LED tail lamps as standard.
All 1.3 L Gli Jazz has the antenna mounted at the front behind just behind the front windscreen The VTi 1.5 L engine and body remained the same with the addition of a sports collapsible antenna mounting on the rear roof. The CVT paddle shift system was altered for easier use. The paddle system is down gears on the left and up gears on the right. The previous model had a shifter for both up down at the 3 o'clock and 9 o'clock positions.
The VTi-S is mechanically similar to the VTi but has a sports body kit. In addition, the LED tail lamps are smoked giving a more 'sporty' look.