Honda will add safety features to their entry level cars, the Brio and the Amaze. While not giving us exact details, Raman Kumar Sharma, vice president Honda Cars India, said the updates will be added with the beginning of the new product life-cycle of the individual cars – Honda Brio, Honda Amaze, Honda Jazz and Honda Mobilio.
The competition has already gone ahead on the safety front with Maruti and Hyundai offering ABS and airbags across the trims. Ford, though, has been the first one to make the safety features standard. We expect Honda to offer the safety add-ons for the Amaze, the Brio and also the Jazz.
Coming to the Brio hatchback, it was launched in India back in 2011. Honda tends to update their cars every three-four years. But, it has been five years since the Brio's launch without any major upgrades. Honda says, the Brio sales are going as per their expectations with little or almost no apparent intention to get the Brio up to date.
When asked about the Civic, Mr. Sharma said that Honda is continuously studying the market and will get new products at the right time. In case of the Accord, we had expected Honda to bring in the hybrid to compete with the Toyota Camry. But unlike Toyota, who builds the Camry as CKD, Honda plans to get the Accord Hybrid as CBU. Like the Civic Hybrid that costs over Rs 20 lakh, the Honda Accord Hybrid may turn out to be way too expensive to sell in spite of the government sops for hybrid cars.
Honda has increased its car manufacturing capacity from the two plants in India to 3,00,000 units per annum and currently sells the Honda Brio, Amaze, Jazz, Mobilio, City and the CR-V in India. Honda has also unveiled the Mobilio based BR-V along with the Honda Accord at the Auto Expo 2016, which will be added to their product portfolio by the end of this year.