When the Honda Fit – the name for the Jazz in Japan – was launched in 2001, it arrived at a time when consumer tastes were changing. Traditional sedans were no longer appealing and motorists in Japan wanted compact and eco-friendly cars. The Fit proved to be just the sort of car they preferred and not surprisingly, the model outsold the Corolla which had been the bestselling car in Japan year after year since it was launched in 1966. It even became ‘Japan Car of the Year’ for 2001, strong validation of the product concept being right for the times.
The Fit was also right for other markets where small was increasingly preferred as urban conditions became more and more congested. Honda exported the car to many countries, including the big US market. In Malaysia, where it was introduced as the Jazz, its entry was modest as it was an imported CBU model but it still attracted interest due to its practical and innovative features.
Eventually, Honda Malaysia began assembling the model as strong demand was evident, and it has remained a popular hatchback in the local line-up. The current generation in the Malaysian market is the third generation which was launched in 2017. From the line-up of four variants, Honda Malaysia has chosen the Jazz 1.5V for the ‘1 Million Dreams’ Special Edition that will be given away at the end of this month.
Specially for frontliners
In the past year, the heroes in the fight against COVID-19 have been the frontliners, especially those in the healthcare areas. As a way of saying ‘Thank You‘ to these Malaysians for their dedication to protect us and save lives, the Jazz ‘1 Million Dreams’ Special Edition is reserved for a winner from this group that includes those in the Health, Defence, Public Service and Education sectors. They are invited to submit entries and select the ‘FRONTLINERS’ category to identify themselves when filling out their details.
Like the other six Special Edition models, this exclusive Jazz comes in a dual-tone finish with a white body and black roof. At the front, the black grille has a red highlight line running across it and there are also similar red lines on each door mirror. At the rear end too, a red highlight has been added below the bumper. The alloy wheels, finished in black, also have the red highlights.
The Jazz has a spacious platform which provides a roomy interior. Exclusive features within are the ‘1 Million Dreams’ wording embossed on the half-leather front seats, while the leather-wrapped steering wheel has red stitching and a centre mark to indicate to the driver where the front wheels are pointed (which may not always be where the nose is pointed!).
Innovative ULTRA Seats
Right from the start, the Jazz has had ULTRA Seats in the rear and the concept for these seats came about after the leader of the development team and his members spent long hours observing how people use their cars, especially when out shopping. And by simply making it possible to fold the rear seats upwards against the backrests, a taller space was created which would be useful when carrying tall items like plants.
At the same time, the seating layout was also made more versatile with additional variations, including one that allowed stretching out to relax. The interior designers also thoughtfully added grocery hooks to the underside of the ULTRA Seats.
With the Jazz 1.5V variant, there are a number of premium features such as paddle shifters, touch controls for the air-conditioning system, engine pushstart button and keyless entry, and cruise control.
The occupants are well protected not just by the tough G-CON structure but also airbags on the front and sides. Active safety systems such as ABS, Vehicle Stability Assist, Brake Assist and Hillstart Assist are provided to ensure that the driver can avoid accidents or maintain control in slippery conditions.
The engine is the familiar SOHC i-VTEC 4-cylinder unit which produces 120 ps/145 Nm, output that will enable spirited performance as the Jazz has a kerb weight of 1,099 kgs. The Jazz was the first Honda model to introduce the CVT in the Malaysian market and this transmission type remains in use as it promotes fuel efficiency.
While you can’t buy the Jazz Special Edition, there are three variants of the model that you can choose from, with prices starting from RM72,511 (excluding insurance). A MUGEN package is also available, along with optional packages to enhance functionality or looks.
Additionally, as part of the ‘1 Million Dreams’ campaign, there is the Shopee Coins Giveaway for those who participate in any of the ‘1 Million Dreams’ activities on honda.com.my or at an authorised Honda dealer! Up to 1,000,000 Shopee Coins are being given out to 150 weekly winners.
The lucky winners will be announced at a Grand Finale scheduled to be held by the end of this month.
Visit any authorised Honda dealership nationwide to participate. Locations of dealerships can be found at www.honda.com.my.