Compact SUV’s really are the latest trend in the automotive industry, especially in India. Indians have taken a liking to compact SUV’s, because compact SUV’s really suit Indian road conditions like no other segment of cars. All Automobile manufacturers are interested in this segment and almost all major automobile manufacturers either already have a compact SUV in production or are looking forward to put one into production soon. Honda, being one of the top auto makers in India did not want to be left out and announced their plans to launch a compact SUV sometime ago.
The compact SUV from Honda is expected to be loosely based on the Mobilio which in turn is based on the Brio platform. With this SUV, Honda will be aiming at the larger crop of compact SUV’s like the Renault Duster and the upcoming Hyundai ix25 and will not be a sub-4meter SUV.
Consumers looking for a compact SUV will be spoilt for choice because, over the next 2 years, there will be a series of launches in this segment from all major automobile manufacturers, but Honda is looking to make a difference here. All the compact SUV’s which have been announced are all 5-seaters, but the Honda compact SUV will be a 7-seater, and I believe this will be a major deciding factor for any customer, as most Indians value utility more than anything else.
Reports suggest that Honda took executives from a few major Indian dealerships to their R&D facility in Japan to see the prototype of the compact SUV. As of now, there are no details of the engines which will be used in the compact SUV, but we do not think Honda will spend more on developing new engines, but will engineer the same 1.5 liter petrol and diesel engines used in the Mobilio to suit the compact SUV.
There is no report about any timeline for the launch of the compact SUV from Honda, but we’re sure it will take quite some time now, as the SUV has not even been revealed to the public yet.
(Note – The image of Honda Crossroad 7-seater compact SUV is just used as an illustration which was on-sale in Japanese market since 2008, however, the India-spec 7-seater compact SUV may defer from the model shown here.)
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GALLERY: 2008 Honda Crossroad