The all-new, 10th generation Honda Civic will be launched in India on the 7th of March, 2019. A new report in Overdrive suggests that Honda will adopt a premium price strategy for the new Civic. Ex-showroom prices of the Civic, according to the report, will be pegged between Rs. 18-24 lakhs, which means that the new sedan will be pricier than its competition that includes the Toyota Corolla Altis, the Hyundai Elantra and the Skoda Octavia.
What’s more, at these price levels, the new Honda Civic will be making a re-entry into the Indian market at a price tag that’s nearly 50 % more than what the 8th generation Civic used to sell at. Notably, the Civic is making a comeback into India 5 years after the older model was discontinued. And for the first time ever, the Civic will be offered with a diesel engine.
Coming to the prices which the competition sits at, the Toyota Corolla Altis starts from Rs. 16.45 lakhs, and the car is almost at the end of the life cycle. An all-new Toyota Corolla Altis will be launched in India next year, and is expected to have a petrol-hybrid option replacing the diesel motor. The Hyundai Elantra, which will be facelifted later this year, starts from Rs. 13.81 lakhs, and is easily the best value-for-money offering in the segment. It’s also the second best selling car after the Corolla Altis. The Skoda Octavia, which is another large, premium D- Segment sedan, is priced at Rs. 15.99 lakhs.
Compared to all these cars, the all-new Honda Civic will be about 10-20 % pricier depending on which car we compare it with. It remains to be seen if the D-Segment sedan buyer accepts the Civic at these higher price levels. Notably, the Civic offers two engine options – a 1.8 liter petrol with 138 Bhp-174 Nm, and a 1.6 liter turbocharged diesel with 118 Bhp-300 Nm. While the petrol engine will be offered only a CVT automatic gearbox as standard, the diesel engined version will get a 6 speed manual gearbox.
The higher price tag of the Civic could be down to the fact that it’s offered in petrol-automatic trim as standard whereas the competition offers a manual gearbox in base-petrol trim. Just the automatic gearbox is likely to cost between Rs. 1-1.5 lakhs, and is reflective of the higher price tag that the Civic is expected to sit at. For the diesel engine, we can’t really figure the reason for the higher price tag, especially considering the fact that Honda actually builds this engine at its Tapukara factory, in Rajasthan.
The new Civic, like its competition, will be assembled in India through the completely knocked down (CKD) kit route. While local engine assembly for the diesel motor, and the CKD assembly for the entire car, should have made the Civic quite affordable, Honda’s premium pricing strategy could have to do with the fact that the City sedan (which sits in a segment below the Civic) already comes with a premium price tag. Also, City owners are expected to upgrade to the Civic, and to maintain adequate price gap and maximize profits, Honda may be taking the premium pricing approach with the new car.