The utility vehicle segment is seeing a huge boost in demand, prompting automakers to bring in their own compact MPVs and SUVs. Honda recently confirmed that its working on a new MPV which is based on the Brio. This vehicle will be launched first in Thailand, with an India launch happening within a years time. The Brio platform will be used in bringing in more products to the market, including a sedan which is expected to hit showrooms next year. This is part of Honda’s plans to double sales in the Indian market by 2018.
The Honda Brio MPV will be a 7-seater and will have a similar profile as the Maruti Suzuki Ertiga. It will rival the Ertiga and Mahindra Xylo, with the 1.5-litre iVTEC petrol motor from the City powering the MPV. Honda will also equip the Brio MPV with a diesel heart, specifications of which are still unknown. Expect prices to start around Rs. 7 lakhs for the base variant. Our rendering shows the Brio MPV to be quite good looking. The rear of the Brio MPV could be similar to the Brio hatchback and thus made entirely of high grade glass.
Honda was once the top automobile manufacturer in India, but has not slid down to eleventh position. Last month, sales declined by a massive 74% as the shift towards diesel cars continued in the Indian market. Honda plans to regain lost market share by bringing in the diesel version of the Brio soon, while the City and Jazz are likely to get diesel engines within 18 months time. This along with new products based on the Brio platform will lead the charge for the Japanese automaker, who has decided not to bring the new Civic or CR-V anytime soon.