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Matt, Mechanical Engineer
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 21600
Experience:  BEng hons Mech engineering, in auto industry 22 years
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Glad I found you. Am looking for a reliable runabout

Resolved Question:

Glad I found you. Am looking for a reliable runabout (town/shopping only) and found this Honda Jazz 1.4 i-DSI SE CVT-7 5dr reg 2003 80,000 miles automatic petrol for £1,700 at a local dealer here in Edinburgh. It had gone from here to their London branch and is on its way back for me to try. As they sell so fast usually I'm rather suspicious.
Q1. What should I (and my own mechanic) check for in particular?
Q2. AA review states that CVT-7 is a semi automatic. This is what has just died on my Fiesta. How reliable is this likely to be at 13 years old and this mileage?
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Car
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Expert:  Matt replied 11 months ago.


there's a few things to check for

the steering can be a bit sticky and dead in the straight-ahead position.

Servicing is expensive because of the need to re-shim solid lifters and because the engine has 8 special spark plugs.

Fairly poor parking brake works on rear discs and as the cars get older often will not hold without a hard tug. Best left in 1st or reverse gear when parked.

Honda recommends change of CVT fluid every 25,000 in "severe driving conditions" which includes regular driving less than 5 miles from cold otherwise CVT trouble can result.

There is a new, improved CVT fluid for the box, which requires the old fluid to be flushed out first. Cost should be no more than £150, so ask if this has been done

High cost of servicing. Valve/cam clearances cannot be checked without removing the inlet manifold, adding £80 to the cost of a service. 2nd annual service can cost £430 including a new set of front pads.
EGR valves can also block if cars are used a lot in traffic or for short runs from cold and this leads to jerky running.

Make sure the a/c works as compressors have been known to fail.

If its a grey import Jazz/Fit CVT-7s built between 5 June and 23 October 2003: the CVT belt may break, resulting in transmission failure. This problem was the subject of three separate recalls in the Far East, New Zealand and Australia. If the problem has been fixed in Japan there will be yellow paint on the left bonnet hinge bolt. 0

If buying check that the front passenger carpet fits properly.

Matt, Mechanical Engineer
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 21600
Experience: BEng hons Mech engineering, in auto industry 22 years
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