Honda Cars India Ltd. (HCIL) has over the years made an image for itself in this country. So much so that the products made by the company are readily associated with advanced design and technology, and is known for the qualities of durability, reliability and fuel-efficiency (Did I forget refinement!).
Honda has some big plans for the year of 2014 in India. In fact, the model line-up for the company in the coming year looks really promising and a big threat to the competitors. Honda will be seen with a new design philosophy incorporating its products with three design factors. Honda is calling it “Exciting H Design”, and claims that it will make its products more high tech, more beautiful and more durable. We can witness these design elements at work in their upcoming products listed below…
It looks like the Honda stall at Pragati Maidan sure will attract some crowd. Here is the list of all Honda’s Upcoming Products in India:
Honda plans to introduce in the year 2014 a new version of its hugely popular C segmenter – the Honda City. There are also plans to introduce a hatchback, called Jazz, an MPV called Mobilio, and even a compact SUV, Vezel, to take on the likes of Duster and EcoSport.
Out of these, the most anticipated car is the mid-sized sedan – the City. We Indians have loved its reliability and refinement. The 2014 City, based on the Jazz platform, will also feature for the first time a diesel engine. The 1.5-liter i-DTEC diesel from Amaze is a fairly good mill, but for the City Honda is likely to tweak it further and improve on consumption and refinement.
The petrol engine for the new City will be a carry forward from the current version of the car. The 1.5-litre i-VTEC petrol engine is currently rated for 118 hp and 146 Nm . The diesel is expected to churn out >100bhp and 200Nm of torque.
Availability of a frugal diesel, Honda hopes, will win them more converts to the brand. We just need better NVH levels on the City.
Honda world premièred the new City in India on the 25th of this month and will launch it officially in the market in January 2014. The new City is expected to be priced around Rs. 8 lakh for the petrol version and a lakh over that for the diesel for the entry variants. We have the exclusive spyshots of the car here.
The MPV Mobilio and the premium hatchback Next-Gen Jazz will also be unveiled during the Auto Expo in February and both these products look like a direct threat to home grown Maruti Suzuki’s Ertiga and Swift respectively.
The Mobilio MPV is a new market segment for Honda Cars India and it would be interesting to see how Honda finally positions this particular product. The functional people carrier shares platform with Brio and will come with the option of a diesel and a petrol engine. Again, the 1.5-liter i-DTEC diesel from Amaze should be the engine of choice for Mobilio, but since Mobilio will be expected to carry more weight Honda will dabble with the engine some to fine-tune it for the people carrier role.
Mobilio is expected to be launched in India towards the middle of 2014.
Though, the earlier Jazz did not do any good to Honda’s sales majorly because of its astronomical price tag, the new Jazz will be a much better price preposition because of promised high localization. Honda’s Next-Gen Jazz will be placed above Brio and will slug it out with the Swift, i20 and Polo. It will use the 1.5L diesel engine and 1.2L petrol motor from Brio. It should be priced around Rs. 5-7 lakh and by the looks of the car it should be a runaway success.
The new Jazz is expected to be showcased during the Auto Expo in Delhi and we might see it in the showrooms across the country some time during the middle of next year.
VEZEL COMPACT SUV:
Another interesting development is the compact SUV that Honda recently unveiled in Japan. Known as Vezel, this compact SUV is going to go on sale next month in Japan which is when more details of the car will be revealed.
It is expected to arrive in India in early 2015, but there is a possibility that Honda might want to showcase it at the Auto Expo to draw attention. The newly launched Vezel in Japan has a petrol and a petrol-electric hybrid engine. For India though, diesel engine will definitely be present.
These are interesting times indeed for Indian motor industry, which seems to be shaking off the effect of slowdown and hoping to do well in these far from perfect economic conditions. And Honda has announced it loud and clear; they want a major pie of the market! Their products also look a lot more competitive to take the matter in their hands!