Honda to be ready with a baby CRV by 2014
Compact SUVs have already become the next big thing, not only in India but globally. We have Ford Ecosport, Chevy Trax and likes waiting to make a strong statement. So itís only natural that Honda too joins the bandwagon.
The new mini SUV will borrow the underpinnings from its big brother the CRV, but the platform will be shorter and will have less ground clearance. The length of the baby SUV is expected to be around 4.2 metres. There was some speculation in the market that the new compact SUV will be called the HR-V.
Being a compact SUV, itíll most probably be a front wheel drive car with Hondaís real time AWD gracing the higher variants. The 4◊4 system will be controlled electronically unlike the CRVís hydraulic system. Also Honda has reduced the weight and the frictional losses in the drivetrain to improve the efficiency.
Propelling the car will be a 2.0 litre i-VTEC petrol motor generating 150 Bhp. A 2.2 litre, 150 Bhp diesel developing a torque of 350 NM also might find a place under the hood. Apart from these motors, we reckon the 1.8 litre Earth Dreams diesel is also a suitable option.
There will be a hybrid version too. It will make use of the Honda CR-Zís drive module. We can expect a 1.5 litre petrol engine mated to a 14 Bhp electric motor with a combined power output of 125 Bhp.
With everything from the chassis to powertrain being sourced from the existing Honda models, the baby CRV should not cost Honda a bomb to develop. Low development cost means that the baby CRV will make sense economically and it could become an affordable global product.
Every manufacturer is going in with full force in the compact SUV segment and this seems to be the best selling segment in the coming years due to their practicalities.