Phuket Gazette

PHUKET: The Thai automobile market may have headed downhill by more than 30 per cent this year, but Honda is in gear to make up lost ground with the launch of its latest HR-V model.

The company trimmed sales forecasts at the end of last year as the slump in Thailand’s market took hold and Honda’s deliveries plunged in the last quarter of 2013.

“Every Japanese carmaker was hurt in Thailand, and so was Honda,” Kota Yuzawa, an analyst at Goldman Sachs Group in Tokyo, told Bloomberg in January. “Honda hasn’t launched its new hit products in the region, so we’ll have to wait until next year to see a pickup in volumes.”

Honda’s answer was showcased in Phuket recently at the “All-new HR-V Premium and Sport Night Opening” event.

Thailand is the third country after Japan and China to get this small crossover model. The plant here will also export it to Asean markets.

In the Kingdom, the HR-V is expected to see competition from the Mazda2, Mitsubishi Triton and Nissan X-Trail, while it battles it out on the roads elsewhere against the Ford EcoSport, Peugeot 2008, Nissan Juke and Holden, among other sub-compact SUVs.

Nonetheless, the Honda HR-V is set to become a core model in the brand’s local Australian line-up when it arrives Down Under, according to CarAdvice.

First introduced as the Vezel in Japan last year, the HR-V is a small crossover with an attractive design and E85 compatibility, reported The Nation.

It has a 1.8-liter engine developing 141 horsepower and 172Nm of torque, paired with a Continuously Variable Transmission with seven-speed paddle shifters.

The HR-V features a generous package including a panoramic sunroof, LED daytime running lights and LED tube taillights, a seven-inch Advanced Touch Screen audio system with Siri voice command, a seven-color adjustable ambient meter with LCD and Multi Information Display, two USB ports, a power outlet, smart entry and multi-utility seats with three adjustable modes – Utility, Tall and Long.

Additionally, it offers Electric Parking Brake, Automatic Brake Hold, Vehicle Stability Assist; Hill Start Assist; Emergency Stop Signal, three-angle rear-view camera and six airbags.

The sub-compact SUV price starts at 890,000 baht for the S version; 975,000 baht for the E; and 1.045mn baht for the EL version.

This article first appeared in the December 6-12 issue of the hard-copy Phuket Gazette newspaper. Digital subscribers may download the full newspaper, this week and every week, by clicking here.

Keep checking the Phuket Gazette, join our Facebook fan page or follow us on Twitter @PhuketGazette for the latest news updates.
— Isaac Stone Simonelli

1

This car will be a serious competitor for the Nissan Puke for the 'Ugliest Car of the Year' award.

Posted by Fritz Pinguin December 8, 2014 01:16:56PM

Reply

3    1

2

This car will be a serious competitor for the Nissan Puke for the 'Ugliest Car of the Year' award.

Posted by Fritz Pinguin

How can we tell? PG has managed to write an article about a car without giving us a single decent picture of it. But that's ok as they tell us it's similar both to a Mazda 2 and a Mitsubishi Triton. Now I can't think of two less similar cars.

Posted by CaptainJack December 8, 2014 03:48:14PM

Reply

2    0

3

This car will be a serious competitor for the Nissan Puke for the 'Ugliest Car of the Year' award.

Posted by Fritz Pinguin

How can we tell? PG has managed to write an article about a car without giving us a single decent picture of it. But that's ok as they tell us it's similar both to a Mazda 2 and a Mitsubishi Triton. Now I can't think of two less similar cars.

Posted by CaptainJack

Google is your friend – should be links to a couple hundred pics there. Give it a try, Captain. Sir. And as an exercise for improvement of your apparently limited capacity imagination, might I suggest Bentley and Proton?

Posted by Mike Lewis December 8, 2014 05:27:08PM

Reply

0    0

3

This car will be a serious competitor for the Nissan Puke for the 'Ugliest Car of the Year' award.

Posted by Fritz Pinguin

How can we tell? PG has managed to write an article about a car without giving us a single decent picture of it. But that's ok as they tell us it's similar both to a Mazda 2 and a Mitsubishi Triton. Now I can't think of two less similar cars.

Posted by CaptainJack

Google is your friend – should be links to a couple hundred pics there. Give it a try, Captain. Sir. And as an exercise for improvement of your apparently limited capacity imagination, might I suggest Bentley and Proton?

Posted by Mike Lewis December 8, 2014 05:27:08PM

Reply

0    0

2

This car will be a serious competitor for the Nissan Puke for the 'Ugliest Car of the Year' award.

Posted by Fritz Pinguin

How can we tell? PG has managed to write an article about a car without giving us a single decent picture of it. But that's ok as they tell us it's similar both to a Mazda 2 and a Mitsubishi Triton. Now I can't think of two less similar cars.

Posted by CaptainJack December 8, 2014 03:48:14PM

Reply

2    0

1

This car will be a serious competitor for the Nissan Puke for the 'Ugliest Car of the Year' award.

Posted by Fritz Pinguin December 8, 2014 01:16:56PM

Reply

3    1

Right push panel.

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