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Used test: Honda Jazz vs Toyota Yaris vs Volkswagen Polo verdict

The latest Jazz and Yaris are hybrids, while the Polo sticks to petrol power, but which of these small cars makes the best used buy?...

Honda Jazz vs Toyota Yaris vs Volkswagen Polo fronts

Our verdict

So, has the VW Polo been rendered obsolete? Well, the answer is no. In this company, its lack of electrical assistance may put it last in terms of fuel efficiency, but you couldn't call it uneconomical – far from it. It remains as capable as ever, with poor reliability to blame for it missing out on the top spot. 

With excellent fuel economy and the likelihood of bulletproof reliability, the Toyota Yaris will suit many buyers to a T. However, for those who demand a high level of space and comfort, it's simply no match for its two rivals (to the point where it gets pushed into third).  

Not only is the Honda Jazz unprecedentedly spacious, but it's cheap to run, well-equipped and decently quick, too. It feels like a genuine step forward in the small car game, landing it in first place. 

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1st – Honda Jazz

Honda Jazz 2021 rear

For: Lots of standard luxury and safety kit from new; great driving position; seriously practical

Against: Not much fun to drive

What Car? rating 4 stars out of 5

Honda Jazz review
Used (2020-) Honda Jazz review
New Honda car deals
Used Honda cars for sale

2nd – Volkswagen Polo

Volkswagen Polo 2021 rear

For Quietest cruiser; good to drive; roomy; cheapest car here
Against Least economical; concerning reliability

What Car? rating 4 stars out of 5

VW Polo review
Used (2018-) VW Polo review
New VW car deals
Used VW cars for sale

3rd – Toyota Yaris

Toyota Yaris 2021 rear

For Exceptional fuel economy; Toyota’s reliability record; lots of safety kit; decent handling
Against Firm ride; cramped rear seats; small boot; noisiest at speed

What Car? rating 4 stars out of 5

Toyota Yaris review
Used (2020-) Toyota Yaris review
New Toyota car deals
Used Toyota cars for sale

Specifications: Honda Jazz 1.5 i-MMD Hybrid SR

Engine 4cyl, 1498cc, petrol, plus two electric motors
Power 96bhp (petrol), 79bhp (electric)
Torque 97lb ft (petrol), 187lb ft (electric)
0-60mph 8.6sec
Top speed 108mph
Official economy 62.8mpg
CO2 emissions 102g/km

Specifications: Toyota Yaris 1.5 VVT-i Hybrid Icon

Engine 3cyl, 1490cc, petrol, plus two electric motors
Power 114bhp (petrol), 79bhp (electric)
Torque 89lb ft (petrol), 104lb ft (electric)
0-60mph 9.0sec
Top speed 108mph
Official economy 68.9mpg
CO2 emissions 92g/km

Specifications: Volkswagen Polo 1.0 TSI 95 Match

Engine 3cyl, 999cc, turbo, petrol
Power 94bhp at 5000-5500rpm
Torque 129lb ft at 2000-3500rpm
0-60mph 9.5sec
Top speed 116mph
Official economy 53.3mpg
CO2 emissions 120g/km