Honda reveals New Small Concept car to compete with Tata Nano

Set up in 1995, the Honda Siel Cars India is a joint-venture effort by Honda and Siel Limited of India and the New Small concept codenamed EV-N is supposedly Honda’s answer to Toyota’s effort to compete in the ultra-small city car segment. Toyota has since announced that they will be introducing their own model in this segment and Honda would not want to be left behind.

The Small Concept is expected to be equipped with a 1.2 liter engine and will start selling in India come 2011 with a price tag of around USD8500 to 9600 which is about the price of the current Proton Saga.

Currently, only Tata commands the market share in this while Toyota’s Entry Family Car is set to be rolled out next year where they are planning to start production in December with an ambitious target of 70,000 units every year. The rumour is that, the new Small Concept might just be making its way into Malaysia.

This came about after the recent announcement that the low-cost A-Segment model will supposedly be assembled in Thailand and with most cars rolled out from our northern neighbours there is always a high chance that they make into our markets as they are more cost-efficient and economical.

Therefore, keep your fingers crossed and wait for the official announcement when the India Auto Expo takes place from 5 to 11 January 2010. According to reports, “Recently, Honda had hired around 30 engineers for its research and development team at Greater Noida (Honda Siel India’s base). The team will work closely with the R&D team in Bangkok to develop the small car and also focus on bringing down the production cost of this car by optimising component costs,”

With the demand for cost efficient car and practicality on the rise, it would not be surprising to find that more cars in this segment are being populated by car manufacturers. Tata has brushed the feathers of many by introducing the Nano and with the positive signs coming from the roads, Honda will surely want a share of the high-volume market.