Mobilio:Honda’s answer to the Maruti Ertiga

mobilio exterior(1)

The MPV segment has seen a large growth rate in the Indian market since monocoque MPV’s like the Maruti Ertiga were launched. In comparison to the traditional ladder frame construction monocoque are cheaper and have more car-like ride and handling. The Innova which was a huge success is unfortunately become quite expensive, so downward of 10lakhs buyers have no choice but to go in for the Ertiga. This growth in the segment and success of the Honda amaze based on the same platform has inspired Honda to develop the Mobilio, again based on the same platform as the brio and amaze.

The Mobilio looks very similar to the Amaze and Brio upfront. Just a few minor changes have been made like the large chrome front grille and the sporty air dam and fog-lamp housing. It sits on a stylish set of alloys. The body is full of prominent sharp lines and cuts just like the Brio which makes this a funky MPV. The rear is equally interesting with the sharp tail-lamps, Honda city-like number plate area. Honda plans to minimize costs by sharing common parts like the rear-view mirrors, door handles , headlights etc.  As a result the Mobilio shares it’s complete interior with the Brio and Amaze. But with the increased dimensions and Honda’s clever packaging skills the Mobilio is extremely roomy on the inside. Also the second row passengers will be getting dedicated AC vents just like the ones seen on the Innova.

 

mobilio exterior(2)

The Mobilio will most likely be powered by a detuned version of the 1.5l i-Vtec petrol engine seen on the Honda city. It will come with two transmission options,  a 5-speed manual gearbox and a 5-speed automatic gearbox with paddle shifts. The important engine for the Indian market will be the 1.5L diesel(earth dreams) motor already seen on the Amaze which produces 100ps of power and 200Nm of torque. It will be mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox. The concept has a ground clearance of 185mm. Other than that the dimensions have been vastly increased. The Mobilio has a 2650mm wheelbase which is 245mm longer than the Amaze.  Unfortunately the Mobilio is 4390mm long. This is not good news as it will fall in a higher tax bracket. Maybe Honda will have to plonk the smaller 1.2L petrol or reduce the ground clearance in order to reduce taxes and price the car more competitively. 

So finally to conclude, the Mobilio has everything an MPV buyer wants. It has a fuel efficient diesel engine, a very spacious cabin, good reliability and hopefully a good affordable price tag when launched in India. Only time will tell if the Mobilio will be as successful as the Ertiga and if it will affect it as much as the Amaze affected the Dzire and Swift sales.

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