Honda is coming back with a bang; onslaught begins with the new Amaze

When Honda took the wraps off the New Small Vehicle Concept at the 2010 Auto Expo in New Delhi, a lot was expected of them from their much-awaited foray into the affordable segments of the market. A slew of models they brought in - the Brio in 2011, the Amaze in 2013, the Mobilio in 2014 and the BR-V in 2016 - is proof Honda expected a lot from this platform as well. Unfortunately, with the exception of Amaze which tasted success in its first few years, the rest have turned out to be damp squibs in India.

But, Honda isn't giving up on them! They're coming back strongly and it is time the competition sits up and takes notice. Want proof? Just rewind your thoughts to the 2018 Auto Expo in New Delhi and google Honda's debut at the 2018 Jakarta Motor Show in Indonesia. 

Let's start with 'Hamara Dilli' first. The second-generation Amaze that made its world premiere at the Auto Expo this year was a star of the show and going by the response it garnered at the unveiling, expect the all-new model to fly off the showroom floors as soon as the cars reach there. And why not? Slated for launch later this month, the new Amaze appears to have improved considerably in pretty much every aspect over the outgoing model. Gone is the quirky design the Amaze is known for. Instead, the upcoming model gets a clean, almost-mini-City-like styling that not just looks better but far more proportionate too. Yes, we have said that for a sub 4-meter sedan! Going by the pictures floating around, the new Amaze's interiors are a quantum leap over its predecessor, ditching the low-rent Brio-based cabin for an upmarket one complete with segment-first features like cruise control and paddle shifts! Honda has even paired it's 1.5-liter i-DTEC diesel engine to a Continuously Variable Auto Transmission (CVT), a marriage that's likely to be exclusive to India. 

While Maruti-Suzuki's Dzire is on a different planet, we could already feel the rest of the compact sedans scratching their heads!

A couple of weeks back at Jakarta, Honda dropped the next big hint in the form of the New Small RS Concept. While the model on display was a racy little hatch, strip it off the sporty elements and what you see is pretty much the second-generation Brio. Interestingly, the fascia is not a carbon copy of the new Amaze, quite unlike the present Brio family of cars that look the same up until the B-pillars. The hatch looks bigger and more mature now, thanks to the horizontal headlights and the muscular front bumper with the large air dams. While the profile still has the tipped-forward stance and the two sloping character lines like the existing Brio, the rear has been completely revamped. The all-glass rear hatch has been ditched in favour of a conventional unit with sheet metal at the lower half. The loud taillamps are gone too, replaced by sleeker units with regular lenses. Ignore the superb sporty bits though. The chin spoiler, those side skirts, the huge rear roof spoiler, the bumper inserts, the darkened lights and the gloss black touches would not make it to the regular Brio. Still, this is something to look forward to. 

If the interiors are improved as much as they have in the new Amaze and the car remains a hoot to drive like the present one, the new Brio will do a lot better. They just have to bring this here.

That's not all. Recent reports indicate Honda is working on two new compact SUVs based on the same platform and aimed at the Maruti-Suzuki Vitara Brezza and Hyundai Creta, two best-sellers in the market right now. While the BR-V might be replaced with the bigger of the two, what happens to the WR-V when the other one debuts remains to be seen. 

Clearly, Honda wants to compensate for the lack of success of the first-gen Brio-based models in India with this new model onslaught. And if they do what they've seemingly done on the new Amaze with each of these models, they certainly deserve to succeed this time around. 

Bring them on, Honda, but please price them sensibly!


  1. The 2018 Amaze is really a New Beginning to sub 4 meter segment

    1. Yes, a new beginning for Honda. But, Maruti-Suzuki's current Dzire is the one we would say that redefined the sub-4m segment.