Honda Atlas Is Gearing Up To Sell Honda HR-V At The Start Of 2016 In Pakistan

thailand_2014_honda_hrv

 

Good new! As James May would say; Toyota, Honda, and PakSuzuki are planning to launch more cars in Pakistani in 2016-17. Reports coming from sources say that Indus Motors is planning to start assembling its ever popular Vitz in coming couple of years, although they have denied it but we are going to hold on to the news for now. Also, Pak Suzuki is going to replace their Cultus with Celerio.

But the most imminent launch by any local manufacture is of HR-V by Honda Atlas.

According to the news, Honda Atlas has already ordered for the HR-V CBUs (completely built units) from Thailand. Honda Atlas has taken help from their Thailand counterpart before in the shape of previous Honda Accord. It was mostly known as the ‘Thai Accord’ all over Pakistan. The sources from carmaker have said that the HR-V is going to cost customers somewhere around 3.5 million PKR.

If you look at it, Honda Atlas is currently far behind the competition. I mean they skipped a generation of Honda City and are dragging the current fifth generation City until seventh generation is launched internationally. By the way, the sixth generation Honda City made its global debut in India in November of 2013 and it looks beautiful. They skipped a whole generation and shoved a different shape grille in the mouths of their consumers as a soother and launched the ‘refreshed’ Honda City.

They did the same thing again with their Civic; another chrome grille for the Honda loyalists. Current generation Civic has continuously seen a decline in its sale. 9th generation Civic was launched in September of 2012.

The numbers in the graph below are from fiscal year to fiscal year (July to June). In FY 2012-13, the first couple of months had been where Atlas was still selling 8th generation Civic. Honda City has been selling fine though, and the number of total units have increased every year since FY 2012-13. That magic front grille has worked. No wonder they are not bothered with sixth generation City. And since the 10th generation Honda Civic is on the horizon, I don’t see current Civic selling more units of it as well. But until that happens, Honda Atlas needs something more than just Honda City.

Honda Civic Sales Figures

 

And that ‘something more’ can be this HR-V. It can potentially drag Honda Atlas to the front. At least that is what they are hoping for.

HR-V is basically a rebadged and faintly restyled Honda Vezel. The front grille is the most notable difference. The grille…its always the grille. Vezel is an all-Japanese vehicle and is built and sold locally in Japan, whereas HR-V was made to sell internationally. Vezel went on sale in japan in late 2013, whereas HR-V went on sale in late 2014 in Thailand, and in last May in USA. Initially, the HR-V was revealed at New York Motor Show as a concept car.

Vezel and HR-V both come with a 1.5l or a 1.8l engine. I did a quick search on PW used car section and found three 1.8l Vezel cars as well. However, the news is that the Thai HR-V sold by Atlas will come with a 1.5l engine. Vezel comes with a clever 7 speed CVT gearbox. Initially, Vezel along with new Honda Fit Hybrid were diagnosed with a couple of software bugs, and you can read about that in our previous blog post linked below. But those were found in only the early editions (2013-2014) of both cars.

Also Read: You Can Read Vezel And Fit Hybrid Thread Here

I’m pretty sure new Vezel or HR-V have updated software that fixed the potentially dangerous bug that could make the car speed up unintentionally. The Thai HR-V went on sale in Q4 of 2014. So unlike early Japanese Vezel, we can expect it to be bug-free. Is it me or the new cars depend way too much on softwares?! Anyway, moving along…

HR-V stands for Hi-rider Revolutionary Vehicle. The first generation of HR-V was absolutely hideous and was on sale from 1998 to 2006. And we must thank Honda for killing it. The second generation, however, is far better looking than its predecessor. The 1.5l motor in HR-V and Vezel (L15B) is a different variant of the same L15 we have in our 1.5l Honda City (L15A). The 1.8l of HR-V and Vezel must also be related to the R18 we find in our local Honda Civic.

1999 Honda HR-V

1999 Honda HR-V

Now the thing is, you can buy a new 1.5l Vezel from the market for 3.0 to 3.3 million PKR, depending on the color and variant of the car (fancier Vezel can cost more than that). And as mentioned above rumors are that the HR-V will be sold for 3.5 million PKR. And it is just a rumor. It is a possibility that HR-V will end up its customer costing more than 3.5 million. If it’s less than 3.5 million, than kudos to Honda and Honda Atlas, but a cynic in me don’t see that happening.

The question is, why would anyone want to spend 3 to 5 lac more on the same car with a different badge? Also, you can always argue that the Japan imported cars have better build quality and features than the Thailand imported HR-V. Toyota Indus tried doing that and failed miserably. They tried selling their Prius for PKR 4 million plus whereas you could buy the imported Prius for PKR 3 million at that time. I did a little research and PakWeels is filled with imported Prius for 2.2 to 2.5 million PKR including 2015 model Prius. And on Toyota Indus Motors website, it says exactly ‘PKR. 4,449,000/-‘ and that is a huge difference. You can buy another car in that difference. A friend working at a Toyota dealership in Lahore told me that they have sold only one Prius until now.

Same can be the case with HR-V. Right now importers and dealers know their Vezel are selling like hot cakes, so they can demand whatever they like. But when the market will get saturated, and Honda Atlas will have their Thai HR-V, the importers and dealers will reduce their asking prices as well. I don’t think there would be a lot of customers who would prefer spending literally hundreds and thousands of rupees extra just so they can have a multimedia system that is in English and not in Japanese, like Vezel’s.

 

  • HEARTY BOY

    DEAR WRITER,
    You forgot to mention the most important fact that the VEZEL is hybrid,people are getting 20kmpl+ avg from this car and performance from this car on sports mode.HR-V would just be a simple car with petrol avg compared to sedans.So why would any person even go for HR-V and spending 3-5 lakhs more while you can get VEZEL in 30 lakhs.

  • Guest

    But it has 2-doors only.
    Has a big flop factor in a country where people have big families, pathetic public transport and fill the car to the brim with friends, co-workers &c. if they cannot find their own family members.

  • Ali Parvez

    Best Blog Ever i have read on pakwheels… GOOD JOB

  • AbdulB1

    We make nothing here and import everything from outside. We could at least copy Thai govt. policies.

  • Ali

    I guess, introduction of HR-V by HA will only help the customers buying the imported version, whereas also offer an option to those who prefer 0-meter brand new imported vehicle

  • UTR

    bro there are very rare people that are getting 20+ average on vezel. Honda japan claims 24km/l for Vezel where as they claim 20km/l for HRV. Honda’s hybrid technology is not great as the looks of this car : p. So may be there is a chance of HRV being a success

  • Heartyboy

    Hahaha! 2 doors. Epic .have you really seen the car.Its back door handles are integrated in its windows.Its a 5 door hatch back,more precisely a cross over.

  • Hashim Abdullah

    Vezel Hybrid is only available for Japanese market hence can not be offered in Pakistan by Atlas.

    HRV lacks behind Vezel in lot of areas.
    Vezel is significantly power full, thanks to additional power produced by Electric Motor.
    It has 7 speed automatic (DCT) transmission as compared to CVT offered in HRV.
    More fual efficient than HR-V. More premium built quality and it costs less.

    Only an early launch of new CIVIC 2016 can save Honda Atlas.

  • Heartyboy

    Dear, maybe you are right.Honda,s hybrid technology was not good in Honda insight as compared to prius but with vezel they have nailed it.

  • Tech freak

    yup you are absolutely right.just one addition if they can launch new civic with 1.5 turbo engine.that would be a game changer

  • kkk

    These fat ass cars only take much space on the already messed up roads. Theres no control over the huge amount of traffic that gets blocked everyday. We need more comfortable and stylish hatchbacks made locally which will give these companies huge amount of profits more than what civic is giving them. Come to think of it, for 24 lac they are giving the same old crappy look in the civic with no special features and they all end up looking like taxies because every tom and dick is buying them. Theres absolutely no variety !

  • Usman

    They’re not getting 24km/l on Pakistani petrol!

  • Shahab Nasir

    How much does fuel economy matter for people buying a car worth 3.5 millions? People spending money perhaps are more concerned about the reliability and convenience of maintenance. as long as fuel consumption is a reasonable no it shudnt matter

  • Blitz101

    well i don’t think this is a good idea seeing the purchasing power of consumers in Pakistan Atlas Honda should think on making cars that are affordable by local consumers + they are fuel efficient ,they are being irrational .

  • ysk

    HRV is pretty cool. Selling very well here in Jakarta

  • Guest

    No dear.
    I have never seen it, I will never see it.

  • Ghayyour

    1.8L in vezel. A Joke?

  • Fahad

    Indeed.

  • Umer Sajjad

    Ummm i was thinking about something. The vezels currently being sold in pakistan are usually brand new, imported from Japan. But one can import a 3 year old car, which not only costs less in japan but also saves a lot of import duty. So in 2016, when japan will have 3 year old (2013 model ) vezels to sale wouldn’t the price drop drom 3.2 million to atleast 2.0 million here in the local market for those 2013 model vezels?

  • Sam khan

    Instead of bringing this 2 door fat asss crossover… Atlas honda must bring new models of city and civic in Pakistan were already too late.. Plus honda Jazz/ Fit is surely needed by potential customers..

  • Zee

    Honda HR-V pricing is equal to Honda Civic in US and Canada. Honda Atlas should introduce HR-V in price range of Civic PKR 2-2.5 million.

  • Dr. Aamir Liaquat Hussain

    No 1.5 here
    90 % chances are the same 1.8 engine and pathetic prosmatic not cvt.

  • Dr. Aamir Liaquat Hussain

    there is no 0 meter.
    they are around 100Km and believe me less than 100 people will buy… just like prius.. toyota noobs can’t sell 0 meter prius and in the end they gifted to islamabad police.

  • Dr. Aamir Liaquat Hussain

    we should start importing japanese fuel too

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