Honda announces launch of all-new minicar Life for Japan. The latest Honda city car goes on sale there today.

Honda today launched its latest minicar called the Life in Japan.

The Life, Honda says, was developed with the concept of "daily smile technology". Which means that Honda understands the most essential element needed for any minicar to succeed -- and that's the cute factor.

Propulsion power will come from a 660 cc, 3-cylinder i-DSI engine, for both a front-wheel and a 4-wheel drive version, but the excitement likely comes from inside the cabin.

The Life includes more standard goodies than you'd expected from a minicar. A reflection, perhaps, of the collapsing car market globally and the necessity for incentives to drive sales. It is the first minicar in Japan to offer an audio system and a backup camera as standard equipment. It also includes Honda's Advanced Smart Parking Assist System -- a fancy wording for steering assistance.

It will also offer something called a Special Mobility Assistive version, which appears to simply be electric-adjustable seating. But such luxuries are always welcomed in minicars.

Starting price will be 1,410,000 Yen for the base version (14,387 US dollars) or 1,540,000 (15,714 US) for the 4-wheel drive version.


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