Every time a new vehicle from Honda's stable hits the road, the carmaker wins accolades for its design aesthetics. BR-V conforms to Honda's design philosophy of 'man maximum, machine minimum'.
Honda BR-V, designed in Thailand keeping the Indian market in mind, offers seven seats - a first in the mini SUV class. Competitors in its class offer only five seats; no wonder it was an instant hit when launched in Thailand.
Honda has built BR-V on the Brio platform that powers their sedan Amaze and MPV Mobilio. Honda has stretched the body a bit to accommodate the two additional seats. When the big wheels and bold arches join the length factor, BR-V looks double in size, compared to Brio.
Fasten your seat belts, let's take you through a test drive in Udaipur, the city of forts and palaces.
With its pumped-up look, Honda BR-V is a mini SUV that could walk tall among the biggies in the higher league. The fact that BR-V bears no resemblance to Brio is a commendable. In looks, it stands close to the carmaker's highly successful compact crossover CR-V. The chiselled grille, big bumpers, stretched wheel arches are responsible for this feeling. The scuff plates leave a lasting impression. The beefed-up roof rails also contribute to make this machine look bold and beautiful.
The 16-inch wheels give BR-V a 215 mm ground clearance. The muscles flexed from the bumper that holds the fog lamps, spread evenly to the sides and back like a well-toned body builder.
Honda has opted for a radical design for BR-V's rear - no SUV in India has dared to try something like this. The LED lamps bridging the tail lights on both sides, a loud Honda logo and the chrome garnish above the license plate are eye candies you cannot miss.
The body lines are similar to that of Amaze and Mobilio. The body cladding that flows from the front like a wild brook and passes by the wheel arches and syncs well with the SUV-ness. There is no doubt that, among the vehicles in the category available in our market, BR-V owns the most SUV-like look.
The interior has become more spacious. Seats in the last row offer more space than Mobilio and the seats have become cosier. Dashboard finish is entirely different from what we have seen in Amaze and Mobilio. Honda has also improved the quality of the plastics used. Though the stereo console is new, it doesn't gel well with the dashboard, like in the other newly launched cars.
Reverse sensor and reverse camera are missing. BR-V, however, offers a small boot space.
BR-V has both petrol and diesel engine variants and both versions offer extremely comfortable drive and handling experience. The changes made to the six-speed manual gearbox make the petrol model more sporty. Honda will offer its signature CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission) gearbox in the petrol variant. The 1.5-litre i-VTEC petrol brings out 119bhp of power, while the 1.5-litre i-DTEC diesel puts out 100bhp of power. The diesel model gives 21kmpl mileage, along with decent driving comfort.
BR-V has cut down a lot on the noise and vibration that was like a birthmark of all the vehicles built on the Brio platform. Honda has gone liberal on the usage of insulation paddings in BR-V, unlike in Mobilio and Amaze.
In BR-V, Honda has taken extra care to rectify the lack of pick-up problems reported in the petrol models of Mobilio. The new 6-speed gear box and changes made in the engine to reduce friction have delivered beautifully for the Japanese carmaker.