Following its global debut earlier this month at the Los Angeles auto show, the new Honda CR-V is about to be launched in Japan, its first global market. Vehicles are due to reach Japanese dealerships from 2 December, just days ahead of the start of sales in the US.

In Japan, both front- and all-wheel drive variants will be available. A base 2.0-litre engine will come as standard with FWD and a CVT transmission, while a 2.4-litre I4 (the only engine for North America) will be offered in combination with a five-speed automatic and all-wheel drive. The larger engine, while carried over from the old model, is 10kW more powerful thanks to a higher compression ratio. Both variants qualify for Japan’s eco-car tax incentives.

Of minor interest is that in none of the CR-V images issued to the media by Honda does the traditional Japanese market passenger side extra exterior mirror feature.

As for the question of production location, Honda is yet to confirm which plant is building the Japanese market CR-V. The third generation model was or still is manufactured at Sayama (Japan); East Liberty, Ohio (USA); Swindon (England); El Salto Jalisco, Nuevo León (Mexico); Ayutthaya (Thailand); P.T. Honda Prospect Motor, Karawang, West Java (Indonesia); and Wuhan, Hubei (China).

One additional production location for the new CR-V was confirmed by American Honda in May 2011: Alliston 2 in the Canadian province of Ontario.

Honda Motor Europe recently confirmed that the CR-V will be manufactured at the HUK plant in England from late in the third quarter of 2012.

Author: Glenn Brooks