New 2020 Honda Jazz hybrid set for summer launch in Europe
The all-new Honda Jazz hybrid supermini (known as the Fit in some markets) was unveiled at the 2019 Tokyo Motor Show and will go on sale in the UK and Europe in summer 2020, with pricing yet to be announced. It'll be offered as both a regular five-door hatchback and as an SUV-styled 'Crosstar' variant.
The new model boasts Honda's latest 'e:HEV' hybrid powertrain, which will be the only engine offered in European markets. Honda says this is a step on the road to it offering an electrified version of its entire line-up by 2022.
Honda describes the new Jazz's styling as an "evolution" of the familiar Jazz silhouette, and says it will improve on the model's traditional strong points of driving comfort and interior space. A slimmer windscreen pillar promises better visibility, while there's a new horizontal light cluster and discreet spoiler at the rear.
No power output, performance figures, fuel economy or emissions data have been announced for the dual-motor hybrid powertrain yet, but Honda is promising "an exceptional blend of strong and effortless driving performance and impressive fuel economy," along with "a smooth, responsive and direct driving feel".
Inside, the new Jazz will feature the latest infotainment and connectivity technology, with in-car wi-fi and an LCD touchscreen with a smartphone-like interface, along with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone pairing.
On the practicality side, the new Jazz retains the previous model's characteristic 'magic seats', with bases that flip up to free up more cargo-carrying space in the cabin. A wide centre-console armrest and improved, wider seats also promise to increase comfort for occupants.
Finally, Honda is fitting the new Jazz with a wide array of safety equipment, including collision-mitigation braking, day and night pedestrian and cyclist detection, adaptive cruise control and lane-keeping assistance.
In addition to the standard five-door hatchback, there's a rugged 'Crosstar' variant, similar to other SUV-styled superminis such as the Ford Fiesta Active and Hyundai i20. In January 2020, it was confirmed that this version will be offered in Europe alongside the regular hatchback.
The Japanese manufacturer is lagging behind its rivals in the push towards electrification: the only other hybrid model it offers in the UK is the CR-V Hybrid SUV, which launched in late 2018. More recently, it unveiled the pure-electric Honda e city car, which arrived in early 2020.