The Honda Fit (Jazz in most other markets) has been a decent success here in the States. It's economical, somewhat fun to drive and not painful to look at. But it just seems to lack something. Oh, right, sportiness and a bright red Si badge!

To earn the Si designation, the versatile econocar was given new dampers, a larger front anti-roll bar, and modifications to the electric power steering system. Then Honda went nuts and dropped in the 3.0 liter V6 from the Accord... No, not really. In fact, the Jazz Si retains the Eurospec 1.4-liter four-cylinder with 98 hp. Seems hardly worthy of an anti-roll bar of any size.

Helping auto enthusiasts distinguish the Jazz Si is a new body kit, 16-inch wheels with low profile "tyres" and various upgrade interior trim pieces.

If Honda intends to sell a Fit Si here, they better have some plans for a jazzed-up engine to go with those "stylish" side skirts and LED reading lights.
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2012 Honda Jazz Si
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Honda Jazz Si

New Limited Edition model to be introduced in summer 2012
Revised body styling emphasises fun-to-drive appeal
Suspension and steering changes improve ride and handling
Unique interior trim compliments enhanced exterior styling
16-inch alloy wheels fitted as standard
1.4-litre i-VTEC engine with manual transmission
Maintains acclaimed Jazz space and versatility with Honda´s 'Magic Seats'
Comprehensive safety package includes Honda's Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure
VSA stability control system and six airbags as standard
Maximum five-star safety rating in Euro-NCAP crash tests

Making its debut at the Geneva Motor Show is the new Honda Jazz Si, which will reach showrooms in Summer 2012. This new version combines the space, versatility and frugal running costs of the existing Jazz 1.4 i-VTEC but with increased dynamic appeal. The retuned suspension is echoed by styling revisions inside and out.

The Jazz Si was developed by Honda Research and Development Europe and will be manufactured in the UK. Emphasising the sharp appearance of the Jazz Si is a new body kit. This consists of new front and rear bumpers, with deep valances and prominent side skirts. Stylish 16-inch alloy wheels are fitted with low-profile tyres, while front fog lights, dark-tinted privacy glass and a straight exhaust tailpipe complete the transformation.

Inside, the Jazz Si has black and silver supportive seats, with the addition of a sports inspired leather-trimmed steering wheel. To ensure the Jazz Si has substance as well as style, revised suspension settings have been adopted. New dampers are combined with a larger front anti-roll bar to improve straight-line stability and body control. The electric power-steering system has also been modified for improved feel and response. This has been achieved without undermining one of the strengths of the Jazz – its refined and comfortable ride.

Standard Jazz Si equipment includes automatic climate control, cruise control, front fog lights, LED rear combination lamps, remote audio controls on the steering wheel, USB socket, trip computer, powered and retractable door mirrors, height-adjustable driver´s seat, and electric windows- with an auto-up function for the driver– along with the unrivalled flexibility bestowed by the Jazz' Magic Seats.

One of the key considerations for Honda's designers and engineers during the development of the Jazz Si was to preserve the key strengths that owners of the existing Jazz enjoy about their car.

The Jazz Si is powered by Honda's familiar 1.4-litre i-VTEC 100PS (73kW) engine, acclaimed for its performance and high fuel economy. This four-cylinder unit develops its maximum power at 6,000rpm and has a peak torque output of 127Nm at 4,800rpm.

It's paired with either a five-speed manual or CVT transmission. This is the same transmission variant offered with the conventional models

In five-speed manual form the Jazz Si has the acceleration as the traditional models and has a top speed of113mph.

Along with the greater dynamism the Jazz Si retains the easy-to-drive character, smooth controls, comfortable ride and long-distance refinement of the standard Jazz. The Jazz Si therefore offers the best of all worlds – a small car that can effortlessly cover long distances and is also fun to drive.

The excellent safety of the Jazz remains a key component of the Jazz Si, too. It employs Honda's Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure, which compensates for collisions between vehicles of different sizes and deflects crash energy away from the passenger cabin.

ACE body structure is part of a comprehensive package that helped the Jazz achieve a maximum five-star safety rating in Euro-NCAP crash tests. Standard protection features include Honda's VSA stability control system and anti-lock brakes to help the driver avoid an accident. Should a collision prove unavoidable, however, there are six airbags, three-point seatbelts all round, with reminders to warn the driver if someone has failed to put their seatbelt on, anti-whiplash head restraints and ISOFIX child-seat tethers and top anchors.

The Si variant of the Jazz was developed and engineered entirely in Europe and it will be in dealer showrooms at the end of August.

Honda Jazz SE with Idle Stop The Jazz SE with Idle Stop makes its debut at the Geneva Motor Show 2012 and further demonstrates Honda's commitment to reducing CO2 emissions and improving fuel economy. The 1.2 litre Jazz with Idle Stop will be sold alongside the existing Jazz range and will not lose any of the practicality associated with the model. The Jazz SE with Idle Stop sits above the S A/C in the model line up and also benefits from the addition of Auto Climate Control and body coloured door handles and mirrors.

The Idle Stop system automatically switches off the engine when you come to a stop improving efficiency and delivering a combined fuel economy of 54.3mpg and CO2 emissions of 120 g/km – representing an improvement of approximately 3g/km in comparison to 1.2 litre Jazz. The system is also optional so that the driver can switch it off when it is not required.

SPECIFICATIONS

1.2 litre petrol engine specification
Displacement: 1198 cc
Fuel Consumption M/T: 54.3 mpg Combined
CO2: 120g/km of CO2