Honda has confirmed that the company will be introducing an unnamed hybrid compact sedan in 2014.
The president and CEO of Honda Motor Co. Ltd. Takanobu Ito told Carlist.my that a compact, B-segment hybrid global sedan is currently in the plans, adding that this model will be sold in various Asian markets including Japan.
In the weeks preceding the 2013 Tokyo Motor Show's opening, we have been tipped off by several industry players that the next generation 2014 Honda City is going to feature a hybrid variant but we refrained from publishing the news as it seemed too speculative.
At this afternoon's press event at the Tokyo Motor Show, we noticed that tucked away in one of the presentation slides aimed at the Japanese media, there was a slide which listed a compact hybrid sedan as one of the two more upcoming models to Japan.
When asked to comment more about this compact hybrid sedan, Ito was initially apprehensive to reveal any further information, explaining that the presentation slide was meant for the Japanese media.
Fortunately, he gracefully entertained our question and began to motion to Hiroshi Kobayashi, COO of Asia Ocenia (below) Region Operations to reveal further information to us.
Without specifically naming the model, Kobayashi confirmed that a B-segment compact sedan hybrid model will be introduced in both Thailand and Malaysia, adding that the model will first be introduced in overseas Asian markets, followed by Japan.
"The slide with the model shaded in grey shown earlier today was aimed at the Japanese media. This coming soon sedan is not in our current Japanese market line-up. We plan to launch this model globally as well so I guess it can be called a global sedan. Some markets will receive a hybrid variant, some will receive a non-hybrid gasoline powered model while other markets will have both models," said Ito (below).
The current generation Honda City is not sold in Japan but the earlier generation model was sold in Japan as the Fit Aria for a short period of time.
It is still unclear if the 2014 Honda City Hybrid will feature the current IMA hybrid system used on the Jazz Hybrid or the latest Sport Hybrid i-DCD system featured in the all-new Jazz that is currently on sale in Japan.
Honda Malaysia current hybrid models line-up consists of the Honda Jazz Hybrid, Insight, CR-Z and Civic Hybrid.