Honda Brio Facelift First Look Review

Agropedia

Honda Brio Overview

The Honda Brio, launched in September 2011, marked Honda’s aim of capturing the market of small cars and brought in the much-needed sales figures. The launch of Brio, along with the Amaze (its sedan sibling), has turned around the fortunes for Honda with the car eating up into sales of small car leaders, like Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai. The Brio is a very modern-looking car and appeals to the 21st century buyer in more than one ways. The price, value, space and comfort are good, if not the best, for its segment. Also, carrying the Honda badge has helped its case a lot.The Honda Brio is the second hatchback from Honda after Jazz, which was a world-class product only let down by its pricing. Being a compact car with a light steering and an added option of an automatic gearbox makes the Brio a very attractive proposition for a hassle-free city commuter.

The punchy yet fuel-efficient 1.2-litre i-vtec petrol motor pulls the Brio to three digits in a matter of seconds and can effortlessly cruise at such speeds all day. The engine is basically a slightly detuned version of the motor, which did duty in the Jazz hatchback. This has been done to increase fuel efficiency with the ARAI claiming a fuel consumption figure of 18.4 kmpl.Check for Honda Brio price in Chennai at Tryaldrive.

Honda Brio Exterior & Look

Changes to the exterior are minimal. The Brio retains its cutesy face, but there’s an all-new bumper and grille combo. As you might have figured out already, it’s the same setup we’ve seen on the updated Amaze, just with the chrome grille being swapped for a gloss black one here. It looks more mature now, but on a personal front, I still prefer the older face. The side and rear get absolutely no updates whatsoever, save for a stubby spoiler with LED lights and updated detailing in the tail lamps. The all-glass hatch is unique to the Brio, but it is surprising to see Honda skimp out on a rear wiper. The flat-ish tail is likeable, but the design is beginning to show its age. On a related note, we’d have loved to see the hot RS version that other Asian markets get, with the super-cool projector headlamps and dual-tone alloy wheels, but sadly that isn’t an option just as yet.

The age-old and slightly drab-looking dashboard has made way for a much better looking setup. It’s in line with what we’ve seen on the Amaze and, more recently, the BR-V. Quality is evidently better than, say a Swift, but probably just a notch below the Grand i10. The all-black theme with dull silver and carbon-fibre textured accents add a hint of sportiness to the overall package. The layout is functional, and ergonomics are spot on.

Honda Brio Interior & Comfort

If there was one area where the Brio needed the most attention, it had to be the cabin and particularly so, the dashboard. The original Brio’s plain dash was unappealing and took much away from the surprisingly roomy space. So, we are happy to report Honda has drafted in the dashboard from the Amaze and the BR-V. The design of the dash is more coherent and contemporary while the silver highlights and faux carbonfibre garnishes add a bit of sportiness too. Optional all-black seats and the redesigned instrument cluster further do their bit to uplift the cabin ambience.

The facelift also brings with it a longer equipment list. New to the Brio are electric controls for the air-con system and also a new 2-DIN audio system with Bluetooth connectivity.Elsewhere, the Brio remains unchanged. The front seats, while skinny, are quite comfortable, with the driver seat being height-adjustable. The rear seat affords passengers decent legroom, but is let down by a short seat cushion and consequent lack of under-thigh support. Still, the rear seat is better and far more usable than what you get in most cars of this size. Unfortunately, a smallish boot limits the Brio’s practicality.

Honda Brio Engine & Gearbox

The Honda Brio gets the same 1.2-litre i-vtec petrol mil as the Honda Jazz, albeit slightly detuned for better fuel efficiency. Like all i-vtecs, it’s a gem of a unit. Its fuel-sipping nature, coupled with its peaky power delivery post 6000 rpm, makes it not only fuel efficient but also a delight for enthusiasts.The engine develops 88 PS of power at 6000 rpm and torque of 109 Nm at 4600 rpm. This motor is mated to a five-speed manual or a five-speed automatic. Choose the auto box and supreme level of comfort awaits you. Be it in traffic or on the highway, the automatic gearbox seems well matched to the 1.2-litre motor.

The gearshifts are silky smooth, unlike the kind of reputation cheaper automatic transfer boxes have made for themselves. This one is relaxed yet alert. Though Honda Brio’s automatic gearbox does take time to shift down when you press the throttle fully, you don’t get irritated as you would in other cars. Also, to extract the most go juice, you can slot the gearbox in D3, 2 and 1. The transmission then holds the gear according to the respective number and the gear won’t go beyond third, second and first, respectively.For more information on Honda Brio check Rbts

The ARAI-claimed fuel economy of the Honda Brio is 18.4 kmpl for the manual variant. This is mostly due to its engine, the 1.2-litre i-vtec gem, and Brio’s lightweight construction (920 kg kerb weight). The engine is a de-tuned version of the motor used in the Jazz and is now more fuel efficient.For encouraging more fuel-efficient driving style, Honda has introduced an ECO function display on the speedometer, which glows green whenever it senses that you are driving economically. This, however, might be a bit distracting to the driver but it does a great job. The software running the above said function probably derives its readings from variables such as the vehicle’s speed, the selected gear and rpm of the engine.

However, we must convince you to not be too occupied with this 21st century tech while driving, since there are more things to worry about on Indian roads than just the fuel economy! The Honda Brio has a nice gearing setup, which allows for cruising on the highway while still getting a low fuel consumption figure. The 100+ kmph speeds with the motor rotating at 2,000 rpm still keep the green light aglow, indicating the fuel-sipping nature of the Honda Brio. We managed to extract 12.5 kmph while at it, which is a very good figure considering the nature of the drive.

Honda Brio Driving Dynamics

The Brio is a great city car, thanks to its compact dimensions, a fuel-efficient engine and a light steering. It does a nice job zipping about from point A to point B or just ambling about in the city with quiet restraint.But what happens when you show it a freshly-baked piece of tarmac with no sign of life around it? Well, we’re happy to inform you that this baby Honda keeps up with whatever you throw at it. Open the taps and the Brio reaches three-digit speeds in no time. Play with the revs and you’ll pass 150 kmph. While you are at those speeds, the Honda Brio doesn’t feel out of place. The steering has weighed up, the suspension is keeping the car in poise and there is not much jiggling about from this little performer. Despite its compact dimensions, the Brio always feels as composed as some large sedans.

The car feels tight and can stay like this for days, had it an everlasting fuel supply. NVH levels are well controlled too and little enters the cabin at higher speeds. The i-vtec motor is a smooth operator and goes about its business silently, until you press your right foot in disagreement. Being a light car with 88 PS power under the hood, the car zooms ahead with an effortless bellow, leaving behind most hatches in its wake. There is no hesitation from the motor, which, once past 3500 rpm, gives you the same doses of acceleration addiction as did the old Honda city with its 1.5 i-vtec heart. Like all Hondas, the Brio’s suspension is not suited for low speed use on rough roads. The springs crash and thrash about if you increase the violence and the Brio’s reassured ride stability is compromised. Thanks chiefly to a relatively harder suspension setup, the Brio handles corners with relative ease and composure, albeit with some amount of body roll.

Honda Brio Braking & Safety

The braking performance of the Brio is decent and on par with its rivals. The top version comes with ABS, further helping in the braking performance. The 175 mm-wide tyres also provide for a decent braking performance.The front wheels have got ventilated disc brakes while the rear ones have drum brakes. The brakes do a good job in stopping this sprightly little hatch, thanks to the lightness of the car The car has passive safety tech such as ABS (Anti-lock Braking System). The ABS system helps in case of sudden braking situations, and prevents the car from skidding and going out of control.

Honda Brio Price in Chennai

Honda Brio On Road Price is 5,58,076/- and Ex-showroom Price is 4,81,150/- in Chennai. Honda Brio comes in 5 colours, namely Ralley Red,Taffeta White,White Orchid Pearl,Alabaster Silver,Urban Titanium. Honda Brio comes with FWD with 1198 CC Displacement and 4 Cylinders with Maximum Power 87 bhp@6000 rpm and Peak Torque 109 Nm@4500 rpm DRIVE TRAIN FWD and reaches 100 KMPH at N/A . Honda Brio comes with Manual Transmission with FWD .

Honda Brio Final Word

Small on the outside, big on the inside and powered by an efficient and peppy engine, the Honda Brio always made for a great city runabout. Thankfully, the revised dashboard has added a good cabin ambience to the Brio’s list of positives and we quite like the way the facelift has turned out too. In many ways, then, the Brio does offer all that you’d need from a city car.

The Brio range starts at Rs 4.69 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi) and extends up all the way to Rs 5.95 lakh while the sole automatic version costs a steep Rs 6.81 lakh. The thing is, when you see the Brio in light of similar priced competition from the likes of the Maruti Ritz, the Swift, Ford Figo, Hyundai Grand i10 and even the Mahindra KUV100, the case for the little Honda doesn’t seem quite as compelling. Yes, it is better than before and improves on an already good package. But is it enough to bring the attention back to the Honda? Perhaps not. We fear it’s not a case of too little, but more a case of too late.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *