Honda BR-V 2016 – premiere at GIIAS

The upcoming BR-V will be another one of Honda’s similar in size and correspondingly named compact crossovers. Unlike CR-V and HR-V, however, Honda BR-V 2016 won’t feature in most of developed markets like North America, Australia or Europe. It is intended as an affordable option in developing Asian markets and it was initially presented at Gaikindo Indonesian International Auto Show.

The Engine range

Initial models, like the one presented in Indonesia, will be powered by the 1.5L 4-cylinder petrol engine which manages to return 120 hp and 107 lb-ft of torque. As expected, most of produced cars will be tied to 6-speed manual stick, but upscale versions will be given the ability to upgrade to CVT gearbox. For now it seems that front-wheel drive configuration will be the only one offered, but don’t be surprised if Japanese decide to offer all-wheel drive as an option; at least with top grades. Likewise, don’t be surprised if Honda BR-V 2016 expands its powertrain lineup later on with similar 4-cylinder turbo diesel option.

Design – Interior and Exterior

To begin with compact crossover’s description, one has to note that Honda BR-V 2016 is still a concept. Even as it is, however, BR-V is more than ready for production. It shares plenty of cues with already mentioned CR-V and HR-v, especially up front and from the sides, but it also shares some cues with Mobilio MPV which features in the same markets. We suspect that Japanese will change very little prior to actual production, and most of these changes will be based around chrome removal from the concept.

While BR-V is supposed to be more refined than other Honda’s options in India, it is unrealistic to expect that every single model will feature chromed grille, window margins and garnishes – especially since we’re talking about affordable car.

Inside view

Most of the cabin will be furbished with plastic and cloth. However, more upscale models might offer more refined materials. Still, leather and wood are as far from BR-V as Honda, as a badge is from German luxury brands. Most important news about 2015 Honda BR-V’s interior, however, aren’t materials. It’s the space. While compact might not be the most spacious option around, it will still be able to accommodate up to seven passengers.

It will be interesting to see how much room will third seat passengers have, but our guess would be very little. Feature list will be in accordance to BR-V’s niche. That is to say, Honda’s newest compact crossover won’t be as tech-savvy as its developed market counterparts, but it should still manage to offer air conditioning, AM/FM/CD/MP3 player and capable sound system with at least four speakers.

Safety options

Safety isn’t as important category in Asian developing markets as it is in North America, for instance. That’s why six standard airbags in Honda BR-V 2016 come as surprisingly welcome feature. Apart from that, compact crossover offers anti-lock brakes, hill-start assist and electronic brake force distribution.

Honda BR-V 2016 Price and MPG

While official fuel economy ratings are still undisclosed, and won’t be for the time being, around 35 mpg combined is expected from most of available BR-V’s. Prices are estimated for the range between 8 and 10 lakhs which translates to between 800,000 and 1,000,000 Indian rupees. This, in turn translates to a range between $12,000 and $15,000 in American dollars.

Honda BR-V 2016 might not become the most prolific crossover in Japanese maker’s lineup, but it should have a large impact in Asian markets regardless. It is quite affordable and efficient, and that’s exactly what developing countries put emphasis on. Still, some people would agree that there’s plenty of space for more refined interior and more advanced equipment which will both elude the BR-V for now.

Honda BR-V 2016 main image

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