Honda Brio Facelift Review & Test Drive

 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.View offers on Honda Cars from Honda dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

Honda Brio Exterior

line with the global trend of a homogenous design language across multiple models, Honda has given a treatment similar to the recently facelifted Amaze. Changes at the front of the new Brio include a new bumper and grille, of which the latter is finished in black unlike the chrome finish on the Amaze. Changes on the side are limited to zero and this seems to be a missed opportunity as the company could’ve offered a new set of larger alloy wheels. That said, the Brio’s overall design still doesn’t look dated but the scope of this facelift could’ve been wider.

At the rear, there are minimal changes including a spoiler and a redesigned cluster for the tail lamps. The Brio has always stood out for sporting a cute and youthful design and the updates in the new one help it looks a bit sharper, especially from the front angle. However, we still feel that the changes should have included some more body panels.

Honda Brio Interior

The one area which needed the most attention is the cabin. The original plain jane dashboard has now been replaced with a more sophisticated one. This new dash is the one we have seen in Amaze and BR-V. The quality is much better and lends a contemporary look to the car. The all-black theme and dull silver highlights along with faux carbon fibre garnish add to the sportiness. The black or beige layout seems to be functional and ergonomics are also bang-on. And this can be seen in the fact that everything from knobs, switches to the digital air-conditioning controls are within the realm of the passengers.

Other notable inclusion is the revised instrument cluster that features new MID display and blue illuminated rings. Then there is new 2-DIN music system with Bluetooth, USB and Aux-In connectivity that does contribute to the entertainment package. Other than these, the interiors of Brio remain intact with the same skinny and comfortable seats. The driver seat is height adjustable while the steering is tilt adjustable. The rear seats though offer short seat cushioning and low on under-thigh support, it gives decent legroom to the passengers. Other comfort features include steering mounted audio controls, all power windows and foldable rear seat back.

Honda Brio 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 info on Honda Brio Visit

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

In terms of handling, the Brio is set on the softer side, leading to a good ride quality, wherein the cabin remains largely insulated from the undulations on the road. Going fast through corners results in a fair amount of body-roll but the Brio still manages to hold onto the desired line. The steering is light to operate, making the car easy to drive in traffic and at the same time it also offers a decent amount of feedback.Another area where Brio comes with flying colours is how composed the car feels on the roads, especially when dealing with corners. The car is a lovely runabout and the light steering, soft suspension and light clutch bear this testimony. The suspension is well-tuned; however, running over broken roads is still a reason for worry.

Honda Brio Safety

Brio features disk brake at the front and drum at the rear. For fast runs, the brakes have adequate punch while the pedal bite is also strong. The car comes with ABS and EBD for additional braking safety. Further, the safety of the passenger is ensured by dual front airbags, engine immobilizer, and rear windshield defogger.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 Cost in Mumbai

Honda Brio Ex-Showroom Price in Mumbai ranges from 4,73,597/- (Brio E MT Petrol) to 6,78,710/- (Brio VX AT Petrol). Get best offers for Honda Brio from Honda Dealers in Mumbai. Check for Brio price in Mumbai at Carzprice

Honda Brio Conclusion

The Brio with the updated design and features certainly makes a more value-for-money proposition than its predecessor. With a slightly sharper design and premium interiors along with new features, the Brio is now more competitive. However, I strongly feel that Honda has played it a bit too safe in terms of updating the car. While it isn’t the clear-cut winner in its segment, the new Brio does make a better case for itself now if you’re in the market for a compact, funky, fuel-efficient and reliable hatchback. The new Brio’s prices are mentioned below:

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