By on November 3, 2016

Honda Gienia, Image: Honda China

The unloved Honda Crosstour was last sold in 2015 and heavily criticized for its awkward, ungainly styling. After only 2 years, Honda has brought back a car with nearly identical styling in the 2017 Honda Gienia.

Available only in the Chinese market, the Honda Gienia is based on the Honda City, a sedan version of the Honda Fit. Dimension wise, the compact crossover Gienia is significantly smaller than the defunct Crosstour.

The Gienia is equipped with the same engine as the Honda Fit — a 1.5-liter four cylinder putting out 132 horsepower. Pricing starts at around $11,000 (75,000 yuan) with top versions topping out at $16,000 (110,000 yuan).

Honda’s marketing strategy in China takes a page out of GM’s marketing strategy in the mid-’60s: there is a vehicle for every segment, no matter how small the segment might be. Competing with the Gienia within Honda, there’s the aforementioned Honda City sedan; the Greiz, a restyled City; the Fit hatchback; the XR-V and Vezel Fit-based crossovers; and the Crider, an enlarged version of the City.

Clearly, Honda wants to make sure it covers all its bases, even if some models compete with each other.

Then again, with a population of 1.4 billion people and a rapidly growing middle class in China, the “niche” market for the Gienia will probably make it profitable to sell, even if it only takes a tiny percentage of the Chinese market.

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30 Comments on “Mini-Me Crosstour: The New Honda Gienia...”


  • avatar
    ctowne

    wow. cribbing the Pontiac Aztek. How low hast ye fallen Honda.

  • avatar
    dukeisduke

    “Gienia”? Huh?

  • avatar
    Numbers_Matching

    Hideous.
    The wheel/tire/well/arch/aperture ratio really buggers up the side profile and is at least 25 years out of date.

  • avatar
    tsoden

    KILL IT… WITH A STICK!!!

  • avatar
    Notmyname

    While I prefer the look of sedans to hatchbacks, I do understand the added space benefit of the hatchback design.
    But, I’m not sure I understand a hatchback(or technically a lift back) that doesn’t have any of the added space of a hatchback

    The smartest thing Honda can do with this car is not bring it to the US

    • 0 avatar

      The value of the liftback is less space (although it *does* have more) but more access. It gives a massive opening to the overall space in the vehicle. So many sedans have huge trunks but quite small openings which significantly restrict what you can put in them even if the space is otherwise large enough…the liftback removes that.

  • avatar
    Kenmore

    I hope the Chinese like it and buy bunches!

  • avatar
    B_C_R

    I bought a Crosstour and I have to say that I’m quite pleased with it. I looked at a Subaru Outback with the H6, but the newest gen is only mated to a CVT. Truth be told, the CVT wasn’t bad, but I’d have a lot of reliability problems with the last Subaru’s I owned, so I shopped around a bit.

    On the table were the Ford Flex Ecoboost, Honda Pilot and the Forester XT. The Flex was insane, like bonkers fast, but it was too much vehicle to park and drive. If you want something that’s Mustang fast off the line, give one of these a consideration.

    The Pilot was one of the most unremarkable vehicles I’ve ever seen or driven, and I mean that in the best way possible. There was nothing wrong with it, but I just didn’t care about the Pilot whatsoever. Buy this if you want to rob a bank and get away without anybody noticing your presence.

    The Forester XT, which has the same HT CVT as the H6 Outback, but feels a lot more planted when driving. Sightlines were better than the Pilot, but even its well sorted CVT just felt like a problem waiting to happen.

    Somewhat discouraged by all of this, a Crosstour showed up on a lot with only 8k miles on it. It had all the boxes checked, plus remote start and tinted windows. I scoffed at the idea of it at first, but the buttery smooth V6 and the excellent 6 speed automatic swayed me to at least consider it. I took it home for the night and let the wife drive it too. She liked it, so that’s what I drove home with.

    Likes:
    -Honda V6 is baller.
    -First automatic transmission that I enjoy driving.
    -Solid fuel economy for a heavish 4WD carish thing.
    -Quiet rattle free ride — something I didn’t know was a thing after years of Subaru ownership
    -Lots of onboard distractions and gadgets.

    Dislikes
    -Lots of onboard distractions and gadgets. Seriously, who needs all this s#@t in a car?
    -Somewhat wallowy handling characteristics. The Forester XT excelled here.
    -Mediocre sightlines. Side camera and rear camera helps, but it’s still a somewhat claustrophobic place to be. Forester excels here too.

    Meh about
    The styling has grown on me. I would rather have a Crosstour that has the proportions of the Acura TSX wagon, but those were heavily decontented and only came as a FWD 4 cylinder. Too bad.

    So yeah, the it’s a Compromise car for somebody who doesn’t want an SUV, but can’t find a decent wagon in the US. Plus, did I mention the V6 is excellent?

    • 0 avatar
      SCE to AUX

      Keep after your transmission so you can stay happy with that car. As you may know, Honda V6s are often tough on the automatic transmissions behind them.

      • 0 avatar
        gtemnykh

        Non-issue since the early-mid 2000s IIRC

      • 0 avatar
        B_C_R

        Those issues with with their old 5 speed auto. Lots of the problems were due to heat soak in cramped engine bays and fluids never getting changed. This six cogger is a pretty stout unit and still serves shift detail in the new Ridgeline.

        Still, those old problematic 5 speed autos lasted longer than the new 9 speed ZF transmission that only lasted 20k miles at the hands of Motortrend staff.

        http://www.motortrend.com/cars/honda/pilot/2016/2016-honda-pilot-elite-review-update-3/

        Honda is going to replace the troubled niner with their in-house designed 11 speed, because it goes all the way up to 11.

    • 0 avatar
      JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

      I’m glad you like it, far be it from me to judge. And I understand how the powertrain holds advantages over Subaru’s.

      Hell, I want a Nissan Cube with a vinyl wrap to make the exterior look like a Borg Cube from Star Trek. Put “WERBORG” on the license plate, with “Resistance is Futile” on the plate frame.

      Lol seriously, though, I like odd things, but I’m not much for wagons so the CrossTour holds no appeal to me. It works for you and I think that’s great (not being sarcastic in the least here).

      • 0 avatar
        B_C_R

        I’d suggest a first gen Scion xB over a Nissan Cube. The drivetrain of the first gen xBox is extraordinarily reliable, mostly because it’s a top hat connoisseurs way to drive a Yaris with plenty of headroom leftover.

        • 0 avatar
          JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

          Well, the name Cube fits with the theme.

          I found a Cube with automatic trans issues, would like to explore putting a manual in it. But, I don’t have the time or money for such as that right now.

    • 0 avatar

      Interesting to hear your thoughts. My dad just replaced his Accord and we convinced him to look at more utility-focused vehicles. The three that made the list were the Outback H6 (last-gen), Acura RDX (last-gen), and Accord Crosstour. Once he got over the looks, he was willing to give it a try but we couldn’t locate one to drive in any close proximity. In many ways, it would have been the perfect vehicle for him, but you have to really want one bad and be willing to go a long way for it used.

      As a result, and partially due to a greater trust in Honda, he went with the RDX. It just so happened that the model he found was the perfect price, condition, and trimline for him. Still, I’ll always wonder how the Crosstour would have been…

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus_3.0_AX4N

    I think this looks 60% better than the CrossTour, but that’s pretty far from calling it attractive. To each, their own.

  • avatar
    gtemnykh

    I actually think this is awesome. 5 door utility that the Civic “sedan” should have had. Great price, it’s not the “Fit plus $3000 because CUV buzzword” that the HRV has going on. Good ground clearance without any actual CUV pretensions. Shnoz looks like it came off a much larger car, stupidly large overhand for seemingly no reason (crash test worthiness?).

  • avatar
    Higheriq

    I see a CrossTour crossed with an Insight.

  • avatar
    sportyaccordy

    This car is the rolling embodiment of the early stages of economic development.

  • avatar
    Rochester

    Something is deeply flawed in Honda designers, routinely creating these directional-spoked wheels, but neglecting to create a left-side and right-side.

  • avatar
    Zykotec

    Wait, does Honda actually begin to rival BMW in their number of CUV versions?
    I doubt they can ever lose any money as it’s a parts bin special, and China is huge enough to call ‘niche’ a 6 figure number. In the meantime Homdas lineup in Europe is tiny while we’re waiting for the New Civic to arrive.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    It doesn’t look good, and I expect little since I was well aware what a Fit looked like before ordering mine.
    It’s probably the color though. Genitalia never look that great in blue.

  • avatar
    rpn453

    The Crosstour is awkward-looking to the point where I consider it ugly, but it has substance. It doesn’t look cheap and pathetic like this thing.

  • avatar
    HotPotato

    “it’s pronounced Gina”

  • avatar
    993cc

    “based on the Honda City, a sedan version of the Honda Fit.”

    So, it’s the hatchback version of the sedan version of a hatchback?

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