Honda North America will turn its back on the Vezel name for the brand’s new baby SUV, instead reviving the Honda HR-V badge.
The announcement came at the 2014 New York auto show where Jeff Conrad, senior vice president and general manager of automobiles for American Honda, said the new HR-V and all-new Fit (Jazz) city car will be key to the company’s success in the coming years. In Japan, the car bears the awkward name Vezel.
“Both Fit and HR-V demonstrate how great things can come in small packages, and no one does this better than Honda,” said Conrad. “Together these models also represent Honda’s step-by-step expansion of our production in the region, which has been key to our success in America for more than 30 years.”
The US market HR-V will be built alongside the Fit at Honda’s Mexican plant. Australian versions are expected to be built in either Thailand or Japan.
Honda Australia is yet to confirm what it will call the new model, but it is almost certain to follow the US and name the new model HR-V. The car is set to go on sale either late in 2014 or early in 2015, competing with the Ford EcoSport, Holden Trax,Peugeot 2008, Suzuki S-Cross, Nissan Juke and Mitsubishi ASX.
The HR-V badge was used on a quirky, boxy three- and five-door baby SUV which was sold between 1999 and 2001 in Australia.
Tell us what you think – should the new baby SUV be called Vezel or HR-V in Australia?