Honda Amaze threatens to finish off Honda City on Indian roads

It’s probably no surprise, but the recently launched Honda Amaze is thrashing the competition, including, unfortunately for Honda, it’s flagship Honda City.

According to October sales numbers, Honda Amaze sold 9,564 cars in October, while Honda city sold just 31 cars all over India during the month of October. A year ago, in October 2012, Honda had sold 3,976 Honda Citys. Honda City is set for an upgrade next month, when a newer design and a diesel option are expected to be announced.

And it’s not just the City that is hurting. In Honda Amaze’s cross hairs is the Honda hatchback, Brio, which saw its sales more than halve to 1,472 units in October 2013 from 3,700 units in the same month last year.

Not surprisingly, the impact of Amaze was not seen on the Accord, which is priced at about three times that of the Amaze, in the Rs 20 lakh range.

Honda is unlikely to complain. Overall sales for Honda was up smartly by about 40% to 11,214 cars in India.

The Amaze was launched about four months ago, and retails for about Rs 6-8 lakhs. It is the first car to combine the reliability and refinement of Honda with the economy of a diesel engine, and was a massive hit in a market that has grown tired of Maruti’s less-refined products.

That said, Maruti didn’t do too badly in October either, with its large hatchback segment (Swift, Ritz and Estillo) seeing a decline of only 1.2% for the month to 22,188 vehicles.

Interestingly, Amaze’s direct competitor, the Swift Dzire, too saw a 20% jump in sales to 17,211 cars in October. Consumers seem to be migrating away from the very small cars, as indicated by a 7% dip in the numbers of Maruti’s very small car range comprising of the 800, Alto, A-Star and WagonR. Total sales here was 39379.

GM India sold 2,679 units of Beat, 1,965 units of Chevrolet Enjoy and 1,837 units of Chevrolet Sail in October. Ford doesn’t give a break-up of its car sales.