Honda has confirmed it will electrify its HR-V small SUV this year that will take the fight directly to the new-gen Nissan Qashqai, Toyota C-HR Hybrid and Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross PHEV.
Just a teaser for now, nothing has been confirmed for the new HR-V save for its name – e:HEV – and the fact it will be revealed in full next month.
CarsGuide has contacted Honda Australia to see if the new model will come Down Under and is still awaiting an official reply, but the brand has previously confirmed that every new generation model will be offered with a hybrid powertrain.
If Honda Australia does put its hand up for the new model, it would be one of the only electrified model in the brand’s current stable following the Accord Hybrid launched in late 2019 and the discontinuation of the NSX hybrid supercar.
The popularity of the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid last year has proven that Aussies are ready to adopt fuel-sipping technologies on their family SUVs, a fact that Honda Australia could capitalise on with the new HR-V given the CR-V hybrid available overseas is currently unavailable locally.
The HR-V will use a two-motor powertrain that is standard in the European market, confirming that it will forgo a standard petrol engine in new-generation form – at least in that market.
The Jazz light hatchback also went hybrid-only in and was discontinued in Australia due to the waning interest and slowing sales of passenger cars.
With the Jazz and HR-V sharing the same platform – at least in the previous generation – it is likely the new crossover will mirror the hatchback’s powertrain options.
The hybrid Jazz makes use of a 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine producing a combined 80kW/253Nm, while a 73kW/11Nm 1.3-litre motor is available in the base car in Japan.
Australia could score the hybrid powertrain in higher variants, while price-leading grades might be powered by an internal combustion engine.
Aside from the engine, expect to see the usual boost in safety systems and in-cabin technologies as seen with each new-generation leap.
On of Honda’s teaser images confirms Apple CarPlay compatibility in some form with a large central floating multimedia system, while a physical volume knob and buttons for climate controls can also be glimpsed.