Japanese automobile major Honda’s Indian subsidiary Thursday entered the diesel segment, launching its sedan Amaze, priced between Rs.5.99 lakh and Rs.7.60 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). The entry-level sedan’s diesel variant is powered by an all new 1.5 litre, four-cylinder (DOHCi-DTEC) engine with a fuel economy of 25.8 km per litre.
The diesel engine has been developed exclusively for India at the company’s research and development centre in Bangkok, Thailand, after extensive market surveys.
“With the best of both petrol and diesel technologies, we are very confident that we are ready for an exponential growth in our business in India,” said Hironori Kanayama, president and chief executive, Honda Cars India.
“Amaze will be a game changer for us and over the next few years we will look to increase our operating universe in India to around 50 percent.”
The petrol variant of the entry-level sedan is priced between Rs.4.99 lakh and Rs.6.60 lakh in manual transmission, while the automatic variant is priced between Rs.6.62 lakh and Rs.7.50 lakh.
It is powered by a 1.2 litre, four cylinder (SOHC i-VTEC) engine which gives a fuel mileage of 18 km per litre in manual transmission and 15.5 km per litre in automatic transmission.
The sedan is being manufactured at the company’s main facility in Greater Noida with localisation level of more than 90 percent.
However, body panels, critical engine components for both petrol and diesel engines, and manual transmission are being manufactured in the company’s second plant in Tapukara, Rajasthan.
The bookings for the entry-level sedan began April 1 and the deliveries started Thursday.
The company said it will expand its dealership network from the current strength of 150 in 97 cities to 162 facilities in 102 cities by the end of 2013-14 financial year.