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Beijing show: Honda’s Chinese hero cars

Smooth operator: Honda has revealed two sleek concepts at Beijing, including the Concept C sedan.

Honda unveils two new concepts for China but its ‘S’ focus extends global markets

24 Apr 2012

HONDA has unveiled two new concept vehicles at this week’s Beijing motor show in the form of a sleek-looking people-mover for global markets and an aggressively styled budget sedan designed specifically for China.

The Japanese car-maker also used the show to launch the first “originally developed” production model to stem from its joint venture with Dongfeng Motor Corporation – the Civic-based, Chinese-market Ciimo small sedan.

According to Honda, the global Concept S people-mover and Chinese domestic Concept C both show the direction of mass-production models the company will introduce next year, with the S featuring an unspecified hybrid powertrain, a spacious cabin and styling cues that point the way to new-generation wagons such as the next Odyssey.

The S – which stands for ‘stylish, smart and surprise’ – will be sold first through Dongfeng in China next year, indicating a budget orientation, although the global release that follows for western markets such as Australia is likely to push the model upmarket.

The Concept C – which Honda says represents ‘cool, challenge and China’ – is a China-only proposition at this stage, to be sold through Guangqi Honda Automobile Co, and its design was said to have been inspired by the image of a dragon.

15 center imageFrom top: The Honda Concept C, Concept S and the Ciimo.

The Ciimo is based on the same platform as the eighth-generation Civic, resting on a 2700mm wheelbase and measuring 4545mm long, 1755mm wide and 1450 mm high.

It is powered by a 1.8-litre i-VTEC four-cylinder engine and, combined with a manual gearbox, can achieve fuel economy of 6.9L/100km based on the official Chinese combined-cycle standard.

Speaking at the Beijing show this week, Honda Motor Co president and CEO Takanobu Ito said: “What continues to drive Honda forward is our passion to take on new challenges with our technologies, without being limited by what came before, and to create products that make our customers say, ‘I wanted this kind of car!’“We will concentrate this driving force here in China and build vehicles tailored to the needs of our Chinese customers. Toward this end, Honda and our joint-venture companies will work together to further localise our development, production and parts sourcing in China.”

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