Further strengthening Honda's automobile R&D capability in Brazil
Honda Automoveis do Brasil Ltda. (HAB), the Honda automobile production and sales subsidiary in Brazil, unveiled the FIT's crossover version called the 'FIT twist' at the 27th Sao Paulo International Motor Show 2012.
The FIT twist is developed exclusively for the Brazilian market, and it is the first model developed by the local automobile research and development(R&D) team in Brazil. While maintaining the ease of use and driving comfort of the original Fit, it offers a sportier vehicle image with a bold design realized through adoption of an exclusive front grill and roof rails as well as an exclusive seat surface material.
Honda also unveiled its lineup of new flex fuel vehicles, which are popular in Brazil, including CR-V Flex and Civic 2.0 which are scheduled to go on sale in 2013.
HAB also said that they will be investing 100 million Brazilian reais in its automobile R&D division in a span of two years to further strengthen its facilities and equipment. A new facility is set to be built by next year which will house hundreds more of new employees.
The strengthening of the local R&D capability in Brazil is a part of Honda's initiative to reform its global operations, which includes pursuit of "concurrent development by all six regions of the world," where each region will participate in product development concurrently and at the same level.
Honda also announced its plan to introduce the Acura brand in Brazil in 2015. For the purpose of introducing the Acura brand for the first time in South America, three models, Acura NSX Concept, Acura RDX and Acura ILX are being exhibited at the motor show as reference models.
In the press conference at the motor show, Takanobu Ito, president & CEO of Honda said: "For more than 40 years since we began our motorcycle business in Brazil in 1971, we have been offering the joy of riding, with more convenience and comfort for people's daily lives. To introduce more attractive automobiles more quickly to the Brazilian market, Honda will further strengthen its R&D capability in Brazil, including adopting locally optimized design to create products that directly respond to the voice of Brazilian customers."