Apparently it’s going to take one of our North American Cohorts, like nifticus, for me to be introduced to some of the Japanese domestic cars that I’m interested in and have never seen before, as our Japanese correspondent apparently has no love for tall, boxy things like this Honda Mobilio Spike. I’m always on the lookout for what might be a good replacement for my xB, and so far, this one is the one. It’s only some five inches longer and two inches taller than the xB, but has vastly more interior room, thanks to Honda’s space saving technique of putting the gas tank under the front seats as well as a really long wheelbase.
This little box can seat seven or five in limo-like comfort, carry lots of cargo or be converted to a camper van. And given that it’s based on Honda’s Fit/Jazz underpinnings, it’s undoubtedly fun to drive, as far as boxes go.
One of the keys to its phenomenal space efficiency is its long wheelbase, which is a full ten inches longer than the xB. And it has twin sliding doors.
The Spike is a variant of the Mobilio, which has a bit of extra glass in the back because it’s the seven-seater version.
The Spike is more of a personal “lounge” car, with a giant rear seat and blanked out C Pillars for more privacy.
Here that rear seat, with stretch-limo leg room. It’s got more than my xB, which is one of its best features. How many cars have a decidedly better rear seat than front seat?
And the cargo area with the seat folded is vast, much more than the xB.
Which explains why folks are turning them into mini-campers.
This is one that’s available for rent in New Zealand. Pretty sweet, if traveling solo. Not exactly sure if that’s something I’d use or need, but it’s good to know just in case…
And yes, it’s powered by the same drive train as the Fit/Jazz, with which it’s loosely related. The Mobilio Spike and gen1 Mobilio were built from 2002-2008.
After that, the gen2 Mobilio and related Freed replaced them, and no thanks, not interested. It’s got to be boxy.