Upcoming Jazz gets more front end reinforcement for better crash test ratings
Since the Global NCAP tests happened a few months ago, there has been a lot of attention towards safety and a vehicle’s crash worthiness in India. Although there’s been barely any reaction from carmakers after the outcome of these tests, buyer awareness on safety is rising. In light of this, a crash test of the 2015 Honda Jazz (known as the Fit internationally) is of relevance to us.
The Japanese carmaker was disappointed when the 2015 Jazz received a below par rating for a certain front impact crash test conducted by the American Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) in March 2014. A steel bumper beam located behind the front bumper cladding broke during the test resulting in much more crash energy passing on to the driver’s side of the car. Honda engineers decided to tweak this bit by adding reinforcement and asked the IIHS to re-test the Jazz.
The reinforced Jazz received an ‘acceptable’ grade from its previous ‘marginal’ rating and overall received a ‘good’ rating on the other four crash tests. This gives the 2015 Jazz an overall ‘top safety pick’ rating which is the second best rating give by IIHS. The test in question is the front overlap crash test in which the front quarter of the car crashes into a stationary object like a tree or a parked car at 65kmph and the impact readings are analysed to rate the car.
Honda will launch the 2015 Jazz in India in the first quarter of 2015 and unlike its predecessor, the new Jazz will come with a diesel engine too. Pricing will be a critical aspect as the older Jazz was priced out of the market due to low amounts of local content. Honda has learnt a lesson from this though and will have very high quantity of locally sourced parts to get the price right.