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Honda to introduce new models in India in fiscal 2018-19

Honda Cars India plans to introduce several new models in India over the next two years. Besides the new BR-V, a compact SUV that goes on sale on May 5, Honda plans to launch a cross-over (code-named 2FM) based on the Jazz platform in 2017.

The Honda 2FM is likely to be a Jazz with a rough road package. Such a variant is already on sale in certain international markets under the ‘Fit Twist’ brand name. The Honda City facelift is also slated for 2017.

The India unit is also said to be working on developing a new generation Brio compact car, Amaze sedan (code-named 2UA and 2UB) and the new generation Accord and CR-V. All these models are expected to be launched in India in fiscal 2018-19.

Honda, which had come back strongly in the passenger car market with the new generation City, Jazz and Amaze, saw its fortunes slip in fiscal 2015-16 as new model launches from Maruti Suzuki India and Hyundai Motor India found greater acceptance among car buyers in India.

According to the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers, Honda sold 192,059 units in 2015-16, advancing by a mere 2% over the previous year.

Its share in the passenger vehicle market dropped to 6.8% from 7.2% in the year-ago period. Sales of the Mobilio and Brio saw a steep decline of 74% and 30%, respectively, over a year ago period.

The Jazz and Amaze which were seeing strong sales growth till last year saw volumes taper off due to intense competition from rival models.

The new product activities are expected to help Honda stay in contention with Maruti and Hyundai.