Earlier this year we tested the Honda Brio hatch, and were pleasantly surprised by how roomy Honda managed to make an essentially small car. It was a pretty good drive too with the 1.2-litre engine. Now Honda have announced that they are launching the Honda Brio sedan, and rather unbelievably they claim that it’s even more spacious than the hatch. In this segment the Honda Brio is a very nice contender, and from the pictures we think it doesn’t look too shabby either. They’re keeping the 1.2-litre engine in place too, which is nice. We’re certainly looking forward to testing this one.
HONDA BRIO SEDAN
All the zip – and much more space!• Subcompact sedan joins trend-setting Brio hatch in South Africa
• Extended wheelbase provides roomy cabin and spacious boot
• Lively and economical 1,2-litre i-VTEC engine retained
• Exceptional safety and convenience features
Just more than six months after the debut of Honda’s affordable and zesty Brio entry-level hatchback, the range is being extended with the addition of an equally dynamic and contemporary sedan version.
The four-door sedan retains the Brio’s trademark bright and bold design language, linked to zippy performance, exceptional efficiency and compelling value. However, it adds the practicality of more interior space and a large luggage compartment to the successful Brio formula.
More space, more practicality
By extending the Brio wheelbase by 55 mm, Honda’s engineers have achieved an even roomier cabin with exceptional rear legroom, while the generous boot has a 405 litre capacity.
That additional space and practicality will appeal to young families seeking a trendy and attractive car that is also affordable, economical and versatile, while benefiting from Honda’s exceptional track record as far as reliability and longevity are concerned.
Although slightly larger and significantly more spacious than the Brio hatchback, the Brio Sedan’s kerb mass has increased by only 30 kg, which means that it retains Brio’s zippy, energetic character.
Efficient, enthusiastic powerplant
The sedan retains the Brio hatchback’s modern and economical 1,2-litre i-VTEC powerplant. The compact four-cylinder engine produces a generous 65 kW of maximum power at 6 000 r/min, accompanied by a torque peak of 109 Nm at
4 500 r/min.
Drive is to the front wheels via a five-speed manual gearbox. An efficient five-speed automatic gearbox is also on offer in the Comfort model – an option that will be particularly appealing to urban commuters who have to regularly endure heavy traffic.
The Brio Sedan’s favourable power-to-weight ratio allows brisk dynamics, with a 0-100 km/h acceleration time in the mid-12 second bracket for the manual models. More importantly, fuel consumption is frugal, with a combined cycle figure as low as 6,1 l/100 km for the manual-gearbox Trend 1.2 model.
Roomy, comfortable cabin
But it is the interior that is set to be the Brio’s star attraction. The front layout is identical to that of the hatch, with an ergonomic approach that prioritises occupant comfort and driver appeal.
The layout of the instrument dials and controls is intuitive, and generous equipment levels, even on the entry-level Trend model, ensure a high degree of comfort, while the even more luxurious Comfort model adds an extended features list.
New, wide-opening rear doors ensure easy access to the roomy rear bench seat, which features exceptional leg and headroom. A rear centre armrest with integrated cup holders adds a further touch of luxury.
Both active and passive safety are comprehensively addressed, with the likes of ABS brakes, dual front airbags and Honda’s Advanced Compatibility Engineering (ACE) body structure ensuring excellent occupant safety.
Two trim levels, two transmissions
The Brio sedan will be offered in two model variants – the 1.2 Trend, available with a five-speed manual gearbox, and the 1.2 Comfort, offered with a choice of five-speed manual or five-speed automatic gearboxes.
“The Brio hatchback really took the market by storm when we launched in early December last year,” says Graham Eagle, director of automobiles at Honda Motor Southern Africa.
“It brought Honda’s famed quality and reliability within the reach of a broader audience, while introducing a vibrant energy and youthful appeal to the brand.”
Eagle says that while the hatch is specifically targeted at young and trendy motorists, many of them first-time buyers, the sedan extends the nameplate’s reach to include young, style-conscious families with an appetite for the four-door’s extra space and practicality.”
“Compact sedans are growing in popularity, and the expanded Brio range will provide an affordable, economical and visually vibrant option for young family buyers seeking a spacious, contemporary and well-equipped four-door saloon.
“We’re also extending the appeal of our Brio hatch with the addition of a new, entry-level Trend model to augment the exiting Comfort variant. We’re convinced that this will allow even more motorists to share in the Brio magic,” Eagle concluded.
Model range and pricing
The recommended retail pricing of the new Honda Brio Sedan is as follows:
1.2 i-VTEC Trend Manual R128 900
1.2 i-VTEC Comfort Manual R136 900
1.2 i-VTEC Comfort Automatic R146 900
The prices include a two-year/30 000 km service plan, and a three-year/100 000 km warranty, while services are at 15 000 km intervals.