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Tony O'Kane | Jul, 30 2014 | 12 Comments

Responding to rumours of a performance-oriented Type R variant of the newly-launched Jazz (which is sold as the Fit in some overseas markets), the chief engineer of Honda's all-new Jazz has confirmed that a high-performance Jazz Type R is not in Honda's immediate product plan.

"We have no specific plans for the moment, but you’re not alone in asking that question," Terunobu Kunikane said to TMR at the local launch of the Jazz range.

However, while the Jazz won't be getting a red 'H' badge any time soon, Kunikane said that strong global interest in such a model means a Jazz or Fit Type R could eventually become a reality.

"The USA and other regions and markets have asked that same question, so it’s certainly something that we might consider," he said.

Currently, the hottest version of the new Jazz/Fit is the Fit RS (pictured) that's currently only sold in Japan.

Powered by a direct-injected version of the Jazz's 1.5 litre inline four, the Fit RS has 97kW of power and 155Nm of torque, an increase of 9kW and 10Nm over the Australian-delivered Jazz.

The suspension tune is also firmer for the RS, and a unique bodykit provides a sportier look. Bucking the trend in Japanese cars to embrace an all-automatic line-up, the Fit RS is only available with a manual transmission.

But with such modest power and torque numbers, the Fit RS barely qualifies as a lukewarm hatch like the Barina RS - let alone a warm hatch like the Fiesta ST or Clio RS.

So while Honda is aiming for its upcoming Civic Type R to be the fastest hot hatch around the Nurburgring, it appears the company is content to leave the warm hatch segment alone for the time being.

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