2022 Honda HR-V to launch in Malaysia after June - VTEC Turbo, e:HEV hybrid hinted
Hans · Jan 31, 2022 10:00 AM
2022 Honda HR-V to launch in Malaysia within H2 2022
1.5 e:HEV RS hybrid shown to dealers, VTEC Turbo possible
Prices will be competitive against Toyota Corolla Cross
First launched in Malaysia in 2015 before it was updated with a mild facelift in 2019, the outgoing generation Honda HR-V is now the oldest model in its class. Compared to the all-conquering Toyota Corolla Cross, the current Honda HR-V is a much poorer choice.
Within our region, Thailand and Singapore have since launched the all-new 2022 Honda HR-V. Indonesia should be next, followed by Malaysia.
Sources familiar with the matter have confirmed that the all-new 2022 Honda HR-V will be launched in Malaysia ‘very soon,' and that dealers have already been given an early preview of the latest HR-V.
"Fantastic product. Against the Toyota Corolla Cross, this latest HR-V is a sure seller. I just hope that we can get enough supply, because that has been our biggest problem last year," a Honda dealer told WapCar.my.
Dealers are not privy to further details on specifications and estimated prices for the 2022 Honda HR-V yet, but the closed door preview session was done with an e:HEV RS variant, so it's safe to say that variant is confirmed for Malaysia.
2022 Honda HR-V - 3 engines, 1.5 VTEC Turbo possible
Features for Malaysia specifications, CKD 2022 Honda HR-V will mirror Thailand’s model but our source told us what unlike Thailand’s 1.5 e:HEV hybrid-only line-up, Malaysia’s powertrain option is likely to include other variant(s?) to cater for more traditional-minded customers, details of which are still unclear.
Globally, the 2022 Honda HR-V is currently only available in two engine options (keyword 'currently') - a naturally aspirated 1.5-litre i-VTEC and a 1.5-litre e:HEV hybrid.
China also sells two electric-only HR-V-based models, the e:NS1 and e:NP1, but these are China-only models so let's not complicate things.
The entry HR-V variant is powered by a 1.5-litre i-VTEC naturally aspirated engine makes 118 PS and 142 Nm. That’s quite a big drop from the outgoing 1.8-litre model’s 142 PS and 172 Nm.
On paper that seems like a downgrade from the outgoing car’s 1.8-litre unit, not to mention the Toyota Corolla Cross’ 1.8-litre Dual VVT-i option, so it will be interesting to see how the market reacts to this.
However if the 1.5-litre entry variant 2022 Honda HR-V priced cheap enough, why would anyone complain? Since our archaic vehicle tax structure is still based on engine capacity, the 1.5-litre variant has a 5 percent lower excise tax than the outgoing 1.8-litre model.
Moving one rung up the hierarchy, the two-motor full-hybrid 1.5-litre e:HEV is the definitely the better choice. The Atkinson cycle engine makes 106 PS and 127 Nm, while the two-motor e:HEV adds 131 PS / 253 Nm.
Unlike Toyota, Honda doesn’t provide a combined output for its e:HEV models, and you can’t sum up output of the engine and motor as they peak at different rotational speeds, but Honda says performance is comparable to a 2.4-litre naturally aspirated engine.
There are also strong rumours that a third HR-V engine option, a 1.5-litre VTEC Turbo shared with the Civic, CR-V, and Accord, could be making its global debut soon, either in Malaysia or Indonesia.
Output is still unclear but logically, the 2022 Honda HR-V VTEC Turbo should have a milder state of tune, one that emphasises fuel efficiency and smoothness over racy driving character. So expect it to make slightly less than the Civic's 182 PS / 240 Nm.
2022 Honda HR-V – estimated price for Malaysia
The outgoing HR-V 1.8-litre variants sells from RM 104,000 to RM 118,581, while 1.5-litre Sport Hybrid variant sells for RM 113,954.
Its archrival the Toyota Corolla Cross sells for RM 123,000 to RM 129,000, while the Hybrid variant sells for RM 136,550.
Our sources say that prices of the 2022 Honda HR-V will be very competitive against the Corolla Cross, hybrid variant included. With a smaller engine, starting prices could be lower than before but keep in mind that prices of semiconductor and steel have been on the increase.
We estimate that prices of the most popular 2022 Honda HR-V variants (likely the VTEC Turbo ones) should concentrate around the the RM 125k – RM 135k range.
Honda Sensing will certainly be offered, at least on the top specs variant. The 2022 Honda HR-V will also come with electric parking brake, meaning that its adaptive cruise control will have genuine stop&go capability (Honda calls it LSF, Low Speed Follow), something with the Corolla Cross’s DRCC (Dynamic Radar Cruise Control) that’s paired to a mechanical parking brake can’t do.
2022 Honda HR-V – when will it be launched in Malaysia?
Considering Honda Malaysia's current parts supply shortage woes (an issue that affects the entire industry, some more than others), a launch within H1 2022 is possible but it's a bit on the optimistic side.
Honda Malaysia's immediate priority is to ensure that orders for the very well-received 2022 Honda Civic FE are fulfilled in a timely manner. The recent floods in Shah Alam have also badly affected some suppliers' operations.
A more realistic launch timing should be in H2 2022, meaning that it won't benefit from sales tax exemption for locally-assembled (CKD) passenger cars, which will expire on 30-June 2022.
Compared to the Corolla Cross, the 2022 Honda HR-V is certainly a more emotional product. It looks a lot more expensive too.
However the Corolla Cross is not to be taken lightly. It's ticking all the right boxes. A just-nice 1.8-litre naturally aspirated Dual VVT-i for conservative buyers while more progressive ones can opt for the more powerful 1.8-litre Hybrid.
Its body size, engine capacity and power output, and asking price are at the sweet spot.
The Honda on the other hand, is forcing buyers to choose between a 1.5-litre i-VTEC from a Honda City, which many buyers will think is too small for an SUV of this size, or pay more a VTEC Turbo or a hybrid, neither of which are demanded by conservative buyers who make up a big portion of this segment.
However our source said Honda Malaysia isn't too concerned about the Corolla Cross, as the 2022 Honda HR-V will be 'priced right.'
"Everything the Corolla Cross offers, the HR-V will also have it, and then more," said our source.