Honda Vezel 1.5 X i-VTEC

Oneshift Editorial Team
24 Apr 2015
 

The fun crossover for the family.

Honda Vezel

The Honda Vezel is the long-overdue successor of the well-loved Honda HR-V, which went out of production in 2006. Since then, the compact crossover segment has seen many new contenders, and subsequently goalposts within the segment have been moved further. The controversial but fun Nissan Juke is a shows that small crossovers can be fun to drive, while the recently retired SX4 was a practical family runabout that was both good looking and great value for money. With other newcomers such as the Citroen C4 Cactus and the Renault Captur entering the marketplace, how does Honda’s newcomer compare to the competition then? Months after its initial sales last year, we finally have had the chance to find out with a test drive.

 

Exterior

Without doubt, he Honda Vezel’s styling is clean and sharp. The creases on its body gives the car a refreshing appearance, and the front fascia is especially handsome. Honda has done well with styling and designing the Vezel, especially having to resort to being daring with its design to look attractive.

In front, standard LED daytime running lights enhances the car’s fresh looks, while front fog lights is a neat standard feature too. Around the car, black plastic body mould surrounds the lowest portion of the bodywork for a rugged appearance.

Rims differ from model to model, but alloy wheels are standard on all models, with sizes starting at 16”. Top-spec cars have rather interestingly-styled polished alloy rims.

The hidden rear door handles is a neat touch that adds to the character of this car.

 

Interior

The interior of the Vezel is a truly wonderful place to be. The clean styling of the car’s exterior is replicated on the inside too. The minimalistic centre console is a joy to look at and to use. The fancy air conditioning touch sensitive switchgear is easy to understand and operate, while the touchscreen head unit packs all the tech you need.

In addition, niceties such as push button start, keyless entry, and LED headlamps are all standard features too. Higher spec models are equipped with Honda’s City Brake Assist (CTBA), a collision prevention system. When sensors detects an impending collision while travelling at 30km/h or below, the system will apply the brakes for the driver, saving the driver a considerable sum of repair bills.

Interior quality is great too, soft touch plastics line the interior, and none of the controls feel tacky. The red contrast stitching on the black leather is a nice touch too. This contrast stitching appears on the seats and doors panels, enhancing the mood in the cabin.

Passengers in the car sit high up, offering a commanding view for the driver and passengers. Round the front and back, legroom and headroom is plenty. It’s a doddle to fold the 40:60 split-folding rear seats. Moreover they are flush with the boot floor when folded too, creating a massive load space.

 

The Drive

Underneath the attractive body, the Vezel sports a chassis and 1.5-litre engine that are shared with the latest-generation Honda Jazz/Fit. Despite weighing in at about 100kg heavier than the Jazz/Fit, the output of 129 bhp and 155Nm of torque is sufficient to coax the Vezel’s increased bulk along decently.

While it is rather odd that a car this big employs such a tiny naturally aspirated engine, the advantage is excellent fuel consumption. During the test drive, we managed to achieve 17.5km/L. which is nothing short of top of class.

The CVT gearbox found in the Vezel is smooth and rather responsive, and allows the car to pull strongly across the power band. It is better than most of the CVT gearboxes we are used to, and definitely has a hand in contributing to the great consumption figures too.

To drive, the Vezel is fun and easy. The steering is light, but not completely devoid of feel. The Vezel feels nippy to drive and well-mannered on the road. Body roll is minimal due to the harder springs on the car, and they in turn result in a harder rider, but not uncomfortable.

The Vezel then, not only appears to be a fun crossover, it is similarly fun to drive too.

 

Conclusion

The Vezel is one of Honda’s finest product in recent years, and one of the strongest and most competent car in the compact crossover segment.

We love its great looks and good driving dynamics, while its fuel efficiency will win over its owners, and the spacious, practical, and modern cabin will win the hearts of its occupants. Moreover, priced from just $106,800; the Vezel is great value for money, and is represents itself to be one of the best family cars in the market.

 



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Honda Vezel 1.5 X i-VTEC (A)

Research this Car

Engine

Engine Capacity 1497cc
Engine Type Inline 4
Compression Ratio 11.5:1
Bore x Stroke (73 x 89.4)mm
Power 129bhp @ 6600rpm
Torque 155Nm @ 4800rpm
Power to Weight 106.6 bhp per ton

Performance

Acceleration 11.6s (0-100 km/h)
Top Speed 187 km/h
Fuel Consumption (combined) 15.6 km/L
Drag Coefficient 0.320

Misc Technical Data

Drive Type FF
Steering Electric

Measurements

Body Type SUV
Dimension
(L x W x H)
(4295 x 1770 x 1605) mm
Wheelbase 2610 mm
Turning Circle 11 metres
Kerb Weight 1210 kg
Boot Capacity 435 L
Fuel Tank Capacity 40 L

Brakes

Brakes (Front) Ventilated Discs
Brakes (Rear) Discs