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AUTOMOBILES - HONDA CR-V 2005

Honda CR-V 2005

The new 2005 Honda CR-V

Bowing to market  demand,  Honda Siel India introduces a manual version of the popular CR-V SUV. But no diesel nirvana for the Indian SUV lovers yet.

BY OUR AUTOMOBILES EDITOR
15/1/2005

The new Honda CR-V comes in two variants - manual and automatic transmission. The manual variant costs Rs 14,57,000 and the automatic, a lakh more: Rs 15,57000.

The first Honda CR-V came to India in July 2003. This had only an automatic version. Like its brother Accord, CR-V too is imported into India from Japan. The company says it will think of manufacturing the SUV in India once the annual sales volumes touch 3000 units.

The new Honda CR-V comes with a 2.4 litre DOHC i-VTEC engine. This is an improvement over the earlier CR-V in India, which had a 2 litre engine. Both manual and automatic CR-Vs will run on petrol only. Apparently Honda Siel Cars, which brings CR-Vs to India believes that we Indians are richer than Europeans. The Diesel CR-V runs on European roads. Expect SUV-standard fuel bills.

Honda Siel expects sales of Rs 2500 crore in 2004-05. Last fiscal, it was Rs 1600 crore. Lets see.

Apart from Honda CR-V, the company currently also brings Honda Accord from abroad. Honda City is made in India. Till now, Honda has sold 280,000 units of CR-V across 160 countries since its launch.

Honda Siel Cars calls it the Creative Life Vehicle. Whatever. It's rated as one of the most advanced sports utility vehicles coming to India. Other SUVs on Indian roads are Ford Endeavour, Mitsubishi Pajero, Chevrolet Forester, Suzuki Grand Vitara, Hyundai Terracan and well, Tata Safari too. Mahindra says the Scorpio is a car.

The CR-V interiors feel sturdy and quite comfortable. The Honda CR-V looks rugged as all SUVs are supposed to be. The symmetrical lines of the nose and the headlamps of the CR-V reminds you of the same design attributes as the Honda  City and the Accord. The high-mounted vertical tail-lamp cluster adds to visibility. Not for you, for the car that's following you on the highway.

The vehicle in India will be positioned in the premium sedan segment, besides the SUV segment. "With the launch of the CR-V, we will be pioneering a new segment in the Indian automobile industry. The CR-V offers its customers the distinctive combination of the comfort of a sedan with the thrills of a SUV," says Honda Siel India chief H Yamada, President & CEO, HSCIL said.

The second generation Honda CR-V to be launched in India is the most recent version available internationally and comes equipped with a 1998 cc i-vtec engine and a 142-bhp on tap.

Honda Siel Cars is 99 per cent owned by Japanese automaker Honda and the rest by the Siel group of India. Honda Siel Cars India is also investing Rs 150 crore (Rs 1.5 billion) to ramp up capacity to 50,000 units annually and eyeing over 50 per cent growth in turnover at Rs 2,500 crore (Rs 25 billion) this fiscal.


 

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