Monday, May 16, 2011

Honda finally wakes up – Honda City to come in a Diesel Variant by 2013-14

This will not be for the North American market, the Honda City is a vehicle that would go between the Honda FIT and the Civic and is available predomininatly in India. However, with Honda now having a 2nd diesel engine in their 'repetoire', some day (wishfull thinking) we may see a diesel Honda here!
Late Latif and prone to mistakes, Honda (well, you know. Look at the Honda Jazz) has finally had to face reality. With competition in the segment it has dominated since the last few years getting more and more stiff, Honda has decided to finally power its segment winner with a diesel mill.

Honda had already started seeing a decline in sales of the City with the launch of Volkswagen’s Vento. Analysts say that Honda’s sales figures with the City would have been much higher in the previous two booming sales years had a diesel option been made available to the buyer. Lately with the launch of Maruti Suzuki’s Diesel, Ford’s new Fiesta, Hyundai’s 2011 Verna, the upcoming Nissan Sunny and the more up-market Renault Fluence, the segment stands to be even more competitive.

And with the onset of a decline sales year and the VW Vento making the top spot and as the proverbial final straw, Honda has stated that they will make available a diesel Honda City to the public soon and by soon we mean 2013-14, by which time a lot more of the market would also have gone.

According to sources, Honda has said that they are preparing to develop a diesel engine to power the Honda City in the Indian auto industry very soon. Honda will be developing a new diesel engine in the range of 1.4L-1.6L according to what will fit the Honda City best
Mr. Janeshwar Sen, Marketing & Sales, Senior VP, Honda Motors India, stated, “We are developing a diesel engine in Japan to power City. It could take us more than two years. The rapid dieselisation of the market has happened only in the last one year, since the price difference between diesel and petrol has gone up from Rs 10 to Rs 21. We had to prioritize our efforts to be a big brand with big volumes, which will come from the Honda Brio. We believe we make the best engines and, therefore, there is no question of importing. Till then, we will continue to dominate the petrol segment.”


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