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by Tim Beissmann

A production-ready prototype of the Honda Brio (previously codenamed the ‘New Small Vehicle’) has made its world premiere at the 27th Thailand International Motor Expo overnight.

Developed specifically for developing Asian markets, the Brio will battle it out with other low-price micro city cars from local and global manufacturers, starting with Thailand and India from 2011.

Honda says the Thai model is scheduled for a March launch, with fuel economy of around 5.0 litres/100km and a starting price of approximately 400,000 baht ($13,750).

The Indian model is expected to be launched later next year and will be better suited to the wants and needs of that market, with Honda emphasising the importance of achieving “a good balance between vehicle performance and price”.

At 3.61m long, 1.68m wide and 1.48m tall, the Brio’s dimensions are similar to a Fiat 500. According to Honda, it was designed to be easy to use in urban areas while asserting a strong presence, and spacious inside with “highly efficient packaging”.

Honda plans to use resources from its motorcycle business in the South East Asia region and to source parts and materials – such as sheet metal – locally for the production of the Brio.




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