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New Honda City: First Look Review

  • Nov 27, 2013
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The City has been Honda’s best selling model in India ever since the the car hit the Indian market in year 1998. Over the years, the Honda City has garnered a sizable fan following throughout the country owing to its high quality build, reliability, performance and efficiency which placed it in a league of its own in the mid-size segment. So much so, that even when general market sentiments were down, the petrol only Honda City was having no problems stacking up the numbers on the sales charts.

In a bid to keep its successful formula intact, Honda has worked on improving the popular third generation City, and come out with the new model that features design alterations and mechanical tweaks over the previous car, while the overall essence of the car remains the same as that of its predecessor.

 



The fourth generation Honda City wears the company’s H design language that focuses on three criteria, namely, High Tech - representing the company’s innovative spirit, High Tension - relating to the athletic form of its vehicles and High Touch - relating to fine  surfacing and texture.

As can be seen from the images, the 4th generation city maintains the exterior profile of its successful predecessor while featuring updated design elements such as new bumpers that feature a variation of angular designs and smooth curves, the head lights maintain a similar look to those on the earlier car while the bulbs have been rearranged to place the indicators on the outer edge, the front grille is in tune with the H design theme incorporating the ‘solid wing face’ which consists of a solid bar of chrome stretching from end to end and the H logo placed in the center. The front bumper has a centrally located air dam while there are plastic fog lamp housing as either end that accommodate circular lamps.

 



Around the sides, a prominent crease runs from the lower section of the front doors to the tail lights giving the car a sporty profile that is further accentuated by a rearward sloping coupe-like roofline featuring a shark fin radio ariel, the lower section of the doors features a curve stretching from the top of the rocker panel at the front to the rear wheel arch, lending a visual break, while new five spoke alloy wheels complete the new side profile.

At the back, the new Honda City gets new tail lights that are sleeker and longer and flow on to the boot lid. The tail lights are connected by a strip of chrome located over the license plate holder. The boot lid and bumper slope out from under the tail lights to give the car a bigger look. The rear bumper gets a curve at the lower section to break the monotony of the otherwise flat contour with a faux rear skirt incorporating reflectors. The rear tow hook is mounted centrally under the bumper and the silencer is mounted under the right side of the car.

 



Inside, the 4th generation Honda City gets a new dashboard with an easy to read instrument cluster sporting blue rings surrounding the three circular dials housing the speedometer, rev counter and vehicle information display. The leather wrapped steering is nice and chunky to hold and gets controls to the infotainment system and cruise control. The infotainment system itself has been integrated neatly into the center of the dashboard with the sleek central air vents mounted on top. A segment first in the new City is the touch sensitive air conditioning control panel. The new Honda City also gets keyless entry, push button start and sunroof.

 



The biggest highlight about the latest avatar of Honda’s best selling model is the significant increase in cabin space with more leg room, head room, knee room and shoulder space that gives the new City’s cabin an extremely airy feel which combined with good quality trim pieces gives the car an upmarket appeal. The front seats are supportive, the cushioning is soft and provides good under thigh support. The rear seats too have good cushioning and the back rest is inclined in a comfortable angle. The rear bench can seat three adults in comfort with plenty of excess legroom and knee room (thanks to the 50mm extended wheelbase), but you do wish for more under thigh support.

The 4th gen Honda City will be powered by the renowned 1.5 litre i-VTEC petrol motor while the diesel model will be powered by the company’s 1.5 litre i-DTEC engine that will now be mated to a six-speed manual gearbox for more frugal highway cruising, which could make this the most efficient diesel mid-size sedan in the country. Both engines will be tuned to deliver more power and efficiency.

 



While the new Honda City appears to be a step up in every aspect over its predecessor, its pricing will remain crucial for the car’s success in the Indian market.

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