Honda BRV Facelift Review & Test Drive

Honda BRV Overview ;

Honda came to India in 1998 and became an instant hit with the upper crust of the Indian middle class with the Honda City. When everyone else was driving around in carbureted Maruti Esteems with negligible features, Honda offered the likes of the electronic rear view mirror adjustment. And in the last 18 years of existence, the Honda City has been at the top of its game as one of the most favored cars in India (I should know… I have owned several). Sadly, Honda’s other cars have never enjoyed sales or ‘love’ like the City has. Fast forward to now – 2016. The SUV is clearly king of the Indian automotive segment. And until very recently, Honda did not have an affordable SUV which came with a ‘must-have’ diesel engine. Now they do. After years of dilly-dallying around with prospective products, Honda India finally has a compact SUV to offer in India. And it is the brand new Honda BR-V. For information on contact details of Honda car dealers in New Delhi

Check for Honda BRV Price, Review, Features & Specs at CarzPrice

Honda BRV Design & Style

The Honda BR-V belongs to the Brio family as the compact SUV is based on the same platform. However, the BR-V is the first car from the Brio lineup to break the mundane styling cues. It has got a heavily revised front, spruced up side profile and a new look for the rear. The projector headlamps are sleek and chunky, merging with the signature Honda chrome grille seamlessly. The front bumper is brawny getting some nice styling details along with a faux silver skid plate and an upright hood for that SUV stance. The front three-quarters of the BR-V manages to exhibit the SUV look but as you go towards the side profile, things are quite different.

The Honda BR-V resembles the Mobilio MPV to a large extent when viewed from the side angle. It has got the same kink on the B-pillar, roofline is identical and the lengthy MPV silhouette is quite visible. Honda has given it some rugged details for making it look a bit SUVish and these include tall roof rails, 210 mm of high ground clearance and black cladding on the lower half of the body. The rear has got some eye catching elements such as the new LED tail lamps with a long reflector panel connecting the cluster which gives it a wide look. There is chrome garnishing on the tailgate and a skid plat for the rear bumper. The overall design looks more MPV oriented rather than being an upright SUV.

Honda BRV Cabin & Comfort

Inside the Honda BR-V, the interiors again remind you of the one in Mobilio and Jazz with a similar layout and feel. Agreeably, Honda’s knack of maintaining its appeal by giving a stronger built quality and well trimmed interiors has always worked in all its cars and the same will be seen in this new crossover.

Firstly, getting inside is not difficult even for taller passengers as the larger front and rear doors guarantee good ingress and egress. The seats came in two versions, the first being rich quality leather and the second with premium fabrics. We expect the BR-V to sport the former as standard in their top end variant. The front row seats are comfortable and can be easily adjusted according to any size of passengers but then they aren’t wide enough which makes it a tight squeeze. Similarly, in the second row everything is acceptable and the larger window area also offers proper visibility but then passengers might have to fight it out in terms of space. There is a third as well but with a flatter profile, its best for kids and luggage.

Even though, conventionally, India has a liking for beige interiors but personally all-black finish has always been my favourite as they tend to make the cabin look a lot classier. On the BR-V, it is very straight cut and simple with the familiar layout of things. The steering wheel has controls to alter volume and change mode of entertainment while the instrumental cluster is simple triple-ring binnacle with a chrome surround. There is a gear shift indicator too located inside the tacho ring. One can access all information about the vehicle regarding trip readings, mileage and instantaneous consumption on the third screen.

The central console sports a touchscreen unit with navigation and Bluetooth compatibility. One can also stream music using a phone as well as connect via USB and Aux-In options. It also gets a piano black finish around the central area. Just below that is the air-conditioning system with automatic climate control but this one is not a touchscreen type like that in the Honda City and instead has conventionally styles buttons to operate with a digital temperature display.

In terms of practicality, there are multiple storage options like the twin cup holder on the central zone, pockets on door trims, glove box, one common pocket for the rear occupants and a large boot space. We do not have the exact quantity of bootspace as this was a prototype and not an actual production variant. Even then the boot space looked sufficiently large to accommodate multiple bags. There is also an option of folding down the third row of seats to increase the boot space.

Honda BRV Engine & Transmission

The diesel SUV gets the 1.5-litre i-DTEC engine from the City. The unit is quiet at idling, but gets noisy post 2,000rpm and stays that way to its 4,000rpm redline. But, according to Honda, the NVH has improved compared to the Mobilio. And one can tell both at idle and when driving. The engine makes 99bhp of max power and 200Nm of peak torque. In the real world this means good pulling power even from lower revs. Only catch is to avoid slipping under 1500rpm to avoid the lag. Power is sent to the front wheels through a six-speed manual gearbox which is a little notchy but the light clutch makes easy work of driving in traffic.

The petrol BR-V is powered by a 1.5-litre i-VTEC mill that belts out 118bhp of power and 145Nm of torque. This comes mated to a six-speed manual as well. But, additionally, there’s the option of an automatic, a CVT to be precise. This one too uses a front-wheel-drive layout. The petrol is quieter and more refined compared to the diesel. It revs well too and is best enjoyed when given the stick.

Honda BRV Ride & Handling

Most Hondas these days lack that incredible driver appeal that was a key part of the company’s DNA for decades. Still, they are still quite agreeable to drive, and that’s true of the BR-V too. It’s helped in a big way by that car-like driving position and good visibility. The steering is quick and accurate and this SUV will track true around corners; it really feels like a sedan from behind the wheel. What lets it down is its massive girth that can be felt at all times; you simply have to remind yourself that there’s a lot of car behind you when you try to push it hard. Body control is pretty impressive for something so big, it has to be said, and that’s due to a suspension setup that’s a little on the stiff side. Yes, the BR-V’s ride is a little firm, but like the other cars on this platform, it’s not too uncomfortable for it. Yes, you’ll get a bit of up-and-down movement over a really rough patch of road, but it’s really not bad enough to be a serious complaint. In fact, in most situations, it really handles a variety of surfaces quite well. It’ll smash out potholes quite impressively and it will stay quite flat out on the highway too; there’s even an impressive resistance to crosswinds. All things considered, the BR-V’s ride doesn’t have that excellent balance of the Renault Duster, nor does it have the soft, floaty ride of a Hyundai Creta (nor, thankfully, the associated body roll), and most owners will be quite happy with the comfort levels in here.

Honda BRV Safety & Security

Honda is offering dual front airbags and ABS as standard across all the variants except the base E petrol version of the BR-V. It is a good move but considering the marginal price increase with ABS, they should have offered it on the base petrol trim. None of the cars from the Brio family have been crash tested by Global NCAP so we can’t judge the structural strength of the BR-V yet. However, the after sales of Honda is quite trustworthy and low on maintenance, which is a boon for Indian buyers. The Japanese automaker currently has 298 outlets across 190 cities in India and they plan to ramp it up to 340 outlets by March 2017.

Honda BRV Price In Bangalore

Honda Brv Ex-Showroom Price in Bangalore ranges from 9,11,461/- (BRV E Petrol) to 13,24,676/- (BRV VX Diesel). Get best offers for Honda Brv from Honda Dealers in Bangalore

Honda BRV Bottomline

Lacks SUV appeal, but stands out for its unique seven-seat layoutThe BR-V is another example of the new Honda. This was once a pioneering company that commanded a premium and was full of innovation, but now it’s playing catch-up and ‘match-the-price’. That’s the sense you get with this car, except that in some crucial areas, it hasn’t caught up. Its performance isn’t class leading, it isn’t thrilling to drive and, most of all, its equipment list lacks some crucial items.But then, it’s got some aces up its sleeve, especially that last row of seats – it’s a unique proposition in this class, and one that will no doubt be a deciding factor for many. But that practicality has come at a cost, and that’s the looks. Though it tries quite hard, it just doesn’t give you the full SUV feeling. In image-conscious India, that’s a big misstep.So, it’s not a car you that will tug at your heartstrings, but it is a practical, reasonably priced and sensible choice, and for some, that will be plenty. Look at it for the sum of its parts and it does make a lot of sense. We just wish there could have been more equipment.

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