New Delhi: Honda Cars India Ltd on Thursday launched its compact crossover model WR-V in the country, priced between Rs7.75 lakh and Rs9.99 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).

Based on the Jazz platform, the WR-V comes with both petrol and diesel powertrains. The two petrol variants are priced at Rs7.75 lakh and Rs8.99 lakh while the diesel trims are tagged at Rs8.79 lakh and Rs9.99 lakh (all prices ex-showroom Delhi). The petrol variants are powered by 1.2 litre engine while the diesel versions come with 1.5 litre powertrains.

Honda, however, stayed away from introducing an automatic variant of the model. “The fast evolving Indian market has shown strong demand for compact vehicles that are stylish, comfortable and have premium features," Honda Cars India president and chief executive officer (CEO) Yoichiro Ueno told reporters in New Delhi.

With the launch of the Honda WR-V, Honda is offering a vehicle for recreational usage as well as comfortable driving for daily use in the city, he added. “We are confident that WR-V will help us to fortify our premium image in all segments," Ueno said. The model comes with various features like satellite linked navigation, smartphone connectivity, dual airbags, anti lock braking system, among others.

India is the first country to manufacture and launch the Honda WR-V in the world. It is the first model developed by Honda R&D India in association with Honda R&D Co. Ltd, Japan. Ueno said that with the launch of new City sedan last month and WR-V now, the company is poised for a consistent growth in the coming months.

“We have started the year on a positive note. The new City has received an overwhelming response with over 14,000 bookings till date. Around 40 per cent of the total bookings have been made for the top-end variant of the model," Ueno said. He added that the company is also studying to bring some premium models into the country.

Speaking at the launch, Honda Motor Co.’s chief operating officer, regional operations (Asia & Oceania), Noriake Abe said India is the first country to manufacture and launch the Honda WR-V in the world which is testimony to the Japanese company’s commitment to the Indian market.

Giving an account of Asia Oceania region, he said that countries like Indonesia, Philippines and Vietnam posted robust growth while in India, the company faced “tough business environment". “Demonetisation led to cash crunch and severely impacted consumer sentiments and our business. From February, the sentiment has improved and so is the business," he said.

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