India Will Get the Debut of Honda’s Midsize Suv in the Middle of 2023

The all-new Honda SUV aimed for the Indian market will go on sale by the middle of 2023. In the upcoming months, this SUV will make its worldwide debut and initially hit the market in India. At the same time as the City facelift was introduced, Honda also announced that beginning in 2023, they would be introducing a new model to the Indian market every year.

  • Honda SUV coming by mid-2023
  • Will rival Creta, Seltos, Grand Vitara
  • City facelift prices start at Rs 11.49 lakh

Vehicle production capacity will be increased before its debut

With the release of the updated City in July and the new midsize SUV in September, Honda Cars India (HCIL) hopes to gain a foothold in the Indian passenger vehicle (PV) market and eventually overtake its competitors.

Takuya Tsumura, CEO of HCIL, recently told our sister newspaper Autocar Professional that the company plans to strive to grow more quickly than it did in 2017 as a result of the new releases increasing the size of the potential customer base. By bringing the new SUV closer to introduction in April 2023, production at the company’s plant in Tapukara, Rajasthan, is expected to expand from 540 vehicles per day to as many as 660 vehicles per day.

Ex-showroom, the new City variant priced between Rs 11.49 lakh and Rs 20.39 lakh was recently released by Honda Motors India. The hybrid-powered variants have also been made more accessible by the firm by being made available in the V (Rs 18.89 lakh) and ZX (Rs 20.39 lakh) trims of the updated City.

The updated City is priced between Rs 15,000 and 35,000 more than the outgoing model, but the company claims that the value extended to the customer is significantly higher due to the inclusion of ADAS features, which are otherwise unavailable even in the manual-transmission variants of the updated City.

Newly released competitors to the refreshed Honda City include the Skoda Slavia, Volkswagen Virtus, Maruti Suzuki Ciaz, and the Hyundai Verna.

Urban Hybrid Funding Increased

In FY24, Honda plans to increase production of the hybrid versions of the refreshed City, anticipating that hybrid sales would make up 15 to 20% of the City’s overall sales.

According to Tsumura, HCIL was unable to meet the soaring demand for hybrids in India because of decreased funding from Japan. We anticipate that between 15 and 20 percent of City sales will come from hybrid trim, and with the arrival of the refreshed City, we should be getting higher allocation for hybrid versions,” he continued.

Evaluations of CKD and CBU Hondas destined for India

Tsumura has stated that Honda Cars India is set to retain its profitability even in the current financial year, after the firm broke into profit in FY22 after consolidating its manufacturing footprint from two facilities to one. The business also notes a trend towards more expensive models with more bells and whistles as the market continues its ascent.

While the top-tier models of the Amaze and City account for about 60% of total sales, the percentage of HCIL customers who choose for automatic transmission has increased to between 40% and 50%. Honda Cars India will remain committed to serving the market’s growing demand for high-end vehicles, the company claims.

Honda is looking at the possibility of importing luxury vehicles to India via the CBU and CKD routes once again to strengthen the brand’s position there. Together with the release of the new SUV later this year, HCIL will unveil a new customer interface (CI) for its showrooms, an investment of Rs 260 crore from a branding and retail viewpoint.

HCIL claims great momentum for the brand’s previous offerings, Amaze and City, in the smaller cities, and it currently has roughly 326 locations throughout 238 cities in the country. The percentage of sales attributed to Tier 3 cities is estimated at 30 percent.

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