Honda HR-V is expected to compete against Hyundai Creta, Nissan Kicks, Renault Duster and will likely be positioned below the CR-V
According to Team-BHP member RavenAvi, Honda Cars India has displayed the long-awaited HR-V to dealer principals in New Delhi and its production could begin soon. The launch will likely be scheduled for the festive season in the later part of this year and it will be powered by BSVI compliant engines. Sticking by its announcement of strengthening its premium products, Honda recently introduced the CR-V and Civic while the second generation Amaze continues to drive the major chunk of sales.
In the domestic market, new entrants MG Motor and Kia are debuting with premium SUVs in the coming months and the existing manufacturers are pondering new ways to increase sales numbers by expanding their reach into above Rs. 10 lakh space with SUVs and crossovers. With the SUV segment right from sub-four-metre models to vehicles in sub Rs. 20 lakh are gaining attention, the car companies are starting to respond.
Tata and Nissan launched the Harrier and Kicks respectively in January 2019 while a mid-size SUV from Ford-Mahindra partnership, heavily localised India-spec Skoda Kamiq and Volkswagen T-Cross, a probable range-topping Maruti Suzuki premium SUV sitting above Vitara Brezza rivalling Hyundai Creta, Citroen’s C5 Aircross by end 2020, seven-seater Harrier and more are waiting in the wings.
Honda relies heavily on sedan sales more than any other mainstream brand as the Amaze and City are ace players. But they should not stray away from the fact that Honda has a big lineup of SUVs and bringing what suits the Indian market is paramount for future growth. This shines the spotlight on HR-V which is sold by the name Vezel in Japan and has a country-specific iteration in China as XR-V.
The Vezel VE-1 is an all-electric version of the HR-V with 340 km driving range on a single charge and the HR-V Sport variant is strapped with a 180 bhp turbo engine from Civic. The different avatars of the HR-V show the adaptability of the platform being used and we reckon it has the ingredients to compete against Hyundai Creta, Tata Harrier, Nissan Kicks and will slot below the CR-V.
The tenth generation Civic will have given a big boost for Honda as its sales number has skyrocketed in its very first month to more than 2,200 units. Honda could utilise its perception among Indian buyers as a premium brand by rightfully positioning the HR-V and it is expected to be powered by the 1.8-litre i-VTEC petrol and 1.6-litre Earth Dream diesel engine from Civic.