Falling sales have forced Honda India to pull the plug on the Civic sedan which has sold just over 50,000 cars since its launch in 2006.

Marketing and sales chief Jnaneswar Sen told The Hindu’s Business Line that sales of the car have been falling steadily over the years with other models such as the City eating into its sales.

The last of the Civic models was sold in March this year. “We felt there was no point in investing in a segment that was declining over the last three years,” he said.

The Civic, which competes with Toyota's Corolla and Hyundai's Elantra, is part of the lower D segment. This segment of passenger cars have an engine capacity of 1.8 litre or more and are bigger three-box cars. The segment sales dropped 29% to 19,239 units in 2012-13 over the previous year and the Civic sold 70% less, 685 units, during the same period. In its first year of launch in 2005, Civic sold as much as the entire segment in 2012-13, Business Line noted.

In another development, Honda has said it would launch a new generation Jazz next year while a new City and a multi-purpose vehicle are also expected to be launched soon. A compact SUV shown at the Detroit Auto Show recently may also be launched in India.

Sen said spending announced recently involves setting up a diesel engine plant, a foundry and a 120,000 unit car manufacturing plant. The diesel engine plant, with a capacity of 163,000 units will make engines with about 80% local content, expected to go up to 90%.

Honda also plans to export engine components from this plant to Europe.

Sen said the company currently has two platforms on which various car models are built. The Brio platform consists of the Brio, the Amaze and the yet to be launched seven-seater MPV while the Jazz platform supports the Jazz, the City and (the yet to be launched) compact SUV.

He said the Brio had performed exceedingly well for the company last year, lifting total sales 35% to 73,300 — Honda’s best performance since it began operations in India. The carmaker has about 3.9% of the total passenger car market in the country, placing it fifth.