Honda sketches its new Brio-based MPV
Drawings of Honda's new people-carrier revealed, car to debut at the 2013 Indonesia International Motor Show in September
Car sketches have grown to be increasingly accurate these days. Datsun showed us a sketch of its comeback city car, and the real deal turned out to be very nearly the same car that was drawn on paper. We hope this trend continues, because Honda has released the first sketches of its new MPV, and boy do they look promising.
If you look at the sketches closely (not the nose-pressed-against-the-screen closely), you will see that the front-end clearly denotes where the new MPV is coming from. Yes, that's the snout of the Brio, which means that this is a more people-welcoming version of Honda's cute hatchback. Based on the same platform, the new MPV will have a similar face with a few tweaks, but everything changes from the A-pillar onwards.
You see, this may be an MPV, but it isn't your average people-lugger, and it isn't very tall. The roof appears to be quite low-slung, and the whole car looks more 'station wagon' than dyed-in-the-wool MPV. Those sharp creases, slashes and bulgy wheelarches coupled with that floating D-pillar all point towards aggressive styling for this new MPV. Those rear tail-lamps even remind us of the BMW 5 series Touring. Noice.
This is Honda's first MPV for the Indonesian market, and has been co-developed by Honda's R&D departments in Thailand and Indonesia. Stretched to accommodate three rows of seats, the Brio-based MPV should share most of its interior components with the Brio/Amaze to help keep costs down. Knowing Honda, you can expect clever interior packaging to carve out maximum passenger and luggage space, and just about enough features to keep you satisfied.
When it does eventually come to India, it will be powered by a 1.5-litre petrol (since chances of it being under four metres are slim, and it won't make sense to have a 1.2-litre mill), and us Indians, being lovers of oil-burners, will also get the frugal 1.5-litre, 99bhp i-DTEC diesel motor. The front wheel-driven MPV will be mated to a five-speed manual gearbox, and we don't expect Honda to offer an automatic 'box as an option.
The new seven-seat Honda is slated for an Indonesian debut at the 2013 Indonesian International Motor Show commencing on September 19, but it will find its way to India only mid-2014, and will be priced very close to Maruti's Ertiga. We'll have more details and pictures closer to the car's debut but for now, how do you like the sound of a reasonably-priced, diesel-powered Honda people-carrier?