Japanese car major Honda on Tuesday announced its foray into the highly competitive low-price compact car segment in India with the launch of its Brio model, priced between Rs 3.95 lakh and Rs 5.1 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi).
The company, which is present in India through a joint venture with the Siel group, Honda Siel Cars India, said it is also targeting revenues of Rs 112 crore this fiscal from the export of auto components from India.
"With Brio, we will be entering a new segment for the first time in India. It has been designed and developed specially to meet the needs of customers here," HSCI president and CEO Takashi Nagai told reporters in New Delhi.
He said the company had promised to price it less than Rs 5 lakh and has been able to do this through cost-efficiency measures and high localisation of components. However, the top-end variant of the vehicle will cost Rs 5.1 lakh.
"The Brio is at present about 80% localised and over the next few months, it will reach 90%," he said, adding, "This has been key to the pricing strategy of the Brio."
The Brio will compete with the likes of the Hyundai i10, Maruti WagonR and General Motors Chevrolet Beat, which are priced in a similar range.
The Brio will be available in four variants.
Nagai said the company expects a large chunk of the customers for the Brio to come from smaller cities, whereas demand in bigger cities is likely to be for existing models such as the City, Civic and Accord.
"The compact car segment will soon become the second pillar of business for Honda in India," Nagai said.
Commenting on the development of the car, which is powered by a 1.2-litre petrol engine, he said HSCI's engineers have been involved in the project right from the drawing stage.
On exports of components, Nagai said HSCI has already started shipping components of the Brio to Thailand from its facility at Rajasthan.
"We will have export turnover of Rs 112 crore this fiscal," he said.
The company also exports components for the City and Jazz to Malaysia and Indonesia.