Report: P. Tharyan,
Photography: Mohd. Nasir
The new fourth generation Honda City has oodles of space, is
fun to drive and gives you great fuel efficiency. This is a rare combination.
And mind you, it’s not just the 4 cylinder DOHC i-DTEC 1498cc diesel engine
which gives you some great fuel average (26kmpl as per ARAI) but also the
petrol ones. In fact the 4 cylinder SOHC i-VTEC petrol automatic gives a wee
bit better fuel efficiency (17.9kmpl) than the manual petrol car (17.8kmpl).
An automatic is the best bet these days in an extremely
crowded world of ours. Honestly speaking, when you have scooters, motorcycles,
rickshaws, trucks, buses and cars fighting for space on the eternally crumbling
Indian roads, it’s best to drive an automatic and let the engine and the
transmission do all the driving. All you
got to do is to keep your eyes on the roads and enjoy while the horses drive
you without a sweat. I got a chance to drive the automatic new Honda City.
Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) unlike a dual
clutch transmission is not known for its sportiness. A CVT takes care of your
wallet first (returns great fuel efficiency) and then lets you have fun with
some gentle acceleration. The new CVT from Honda delivers fuel efficiency of
around 18 kmpl.
With a new stylish look, almost fluidic in nature, this car
has everything a person looks for in a premium sedan. The company says that the
all new Honda City expresses Honda’s new design concept “Exciting H Design”
which will be applied to all future Honda global models. City is the first
model in India to adopt this new design concept. Honda always puts the human at
the centre, and at the core of our “Man-Maximum Machine-Minimum” philosophy.
Thus with the H design as the base concept, the styling
concept of New City is referred to as Sleek Crossmotion characterised with a
“low front face “, “airy bumper design” and “advance and high class solid wing
face”. The front design gets further accentuated with the smart “four head
lamps”. The clear cut side panel and a powerful looking fender adds to the side
charms. The rear design too is appealing, especially with the stylish rear
Honda calls it a Layered Floating Cockpit which is expressed
by advanced and high quality textures and a feeling of comfort. Everything
about the inner fascia looks fascinating, be it the control panel lights, the
touch controls for the air-conditioner, or the audio system. The new City
features an advanced 5 inch monitor Audio system with a unique LCD display. The
number of buttons are minimised to make it user friendly. The audio features an
inbuilt hands free telephone system, and the hands free telephone and audio
control switches on the steering wheel give the driver easy access to a wide
range of audio system functions. Parking is made easy with a rear camera
display on the monitor.
But it’s the blue and
white illumination meter with chrome accents that makes the car truly sporty
and premium. The combination meter displays a variety of information for the
driver. There is also an ECON button on the City that helps the driver to
further enhance the fuel economy.
The nips and tucks
While overall the length of the new City stays at 4,440mm,
the wheelbase has been extended by 50mm, and is now 2,600mm. Also, while the
width of the car stays same at 1,695mm, the shoulder room has been increased by
40mm. The front head clearance is improved by 10mm and the overall height of
the new City has been increased by 10mm. The knee room is up by 70mm and the
rear legroom improved by 60mm. For those who love moving with a tons of
luggage, there is good news. The total capacity of under and above floor in
trunk room has been secured at 510 litre. Besides, the trunk opening has been
widened further for better usability.
This innovative Honda Original CVT was developed as “Earth
Dreams Technology” and has been carried in City. High tension belt, CVT fluid,
and efficient oil pump are newly developed based on the technology of the
conventional CVT. Highly precise cooperative control “G-design Shift” with DBW
delivers fun to drive performance. Honda is betting big on this transmission,
especially with its new fluid. Except for that sound emanating from the engine
as if it is trying to tell you that it’s getting into the next gear, the CVT
performance is smooth. Knowing the three generations of Honda City charm, I can
bet this one’s too going to be a rage among the achievers!
New Honda City 1.5 litre
cylinder SOHC i-VTEC
Variable Transmission (CVT)/ automatic
117 bhp@ 6600rpm
145 Nm@ 4600rpm
Brake: Front/ Rear
Fuel Tank Capacity
Tyres: Front/ Rear
Coil Spring/ Torsion beam axle, Coil Spring
Disc / Drum
To be announced
early Jan 2014
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