On May 5, Honda will launch its compact SUV, the BR-V, in India. It will compete with Maruti Suzuki S-Cross, Renault Duster and Hyundai Creta, among others. The BR-V shares its platform with the Brio, the Amaze and the Mobilio MPV. However, that’s where the similarity ends. While from a distance it looks more or less identical to the Mobilio MPV, get closer and you realise it’s unlike most cars you’ve seen in India.
On first looks the BR-V looks like a bloated Mobilio with a heavier stance, a prominent front-end and design cues we have seen before on the City and the Amaze as well. Even though it is being touted as a compact SUV its profile is more like that of the Mobilio.
The BR-V will be launched with both diesel and the petrol engines, a 1.6-litre 16-valve SOHC petrol engine that powers the City and also the Mobilio, along with a 1.5-litre 16-valve DOHC diesel that comes in the new Jazz, Amaze, City and the Mobilio. The diesel engine will be available with only a manual transmission while the petrol will have both a manual as well as a CVT.
The BR-V is comfortable, spacious, decent to drive and features an automatic option. It looks the part of an SUV and has the practicality of an MPV. All-in-all, it is a good car, but the Hyundai Creta is tough to beat. Moreover, the Renault Duster has just been updated and is one of the best off-roaders in the segment. Honda will really have to work hard on pricing the BR-V correctly to be a worthy competitor of the lot.