Tiny tots a growth market
BRACKET creep in the car business is every bit as greedy as the tax man’s insidious attack on your wallet.
Just as a pay rise can push you up in the tax brackets, so the arrival of a new model often means an unseen slide into a new size.
But the greed, in this case, is all on the buyer’s side.
We have become very spoiled over the past 15 years, as prices have barely moved while value has risen, so that even $13,000 cheapies now come with electric windows, aircon, power steering and audio, which once only joined the standard equipment list beyond $30,000. But how about the size? Lots of people tell me how much cars have grown, as they shop for something like a Corolla and find the 2015 model is more like an older Camry in the cabin. I got extra proof this week when I parked a new Honda HR-V a couple of times.
First up, it was alongside an original CR-V. Then behind an early-model Toyota RAV4.
Both times the HR-V looked to be the same size, give or take a couple of centimetres, yet it’s the baby brother of the CR-V and marks the return of a model that was a tiddler when it first sold in Australia. It’s about 30 centimetres shorter than the first CR-V.
Then I parked the HR-V alongside a current-generation CR-V. It is smaller, a little more youthful, and more obviously aimed at young singles than the families who are buying a new CR-V.
But anyone who thinks the new generation of baby SUVs are tiny tots is wrong.
Try this for size: Honda HR-V, 2015 edition