Honda City is the C-segment car that redefined the entry level sedan segment in India with its modern design traits and luxury all at an affordable price tag. It is this model that helped the Japanese auto-maker to grab huge market share without a doubt. Last year, it entered into its 4th generation by undergoing a complete overhaul with respect to everything. Arrival of 4th generation model also marks the entry of diesel variants to the line-up. After one year, a new variant has been added to the series with all black interior scheme along with some new features. Let's take a close look into it.
1. Huge cabin space, practical diesel engine and easy manoeuvrability for city roads.
2. Class leading safety and comfort features. It is a car that offers value for money.
1. Its i-DTEC needs more refinements. Its rivals like Verna, Rapid and Vento deliver more power.
2. Its build quality feels cheap and is nowhere near to the levels of European rivals.
1. An advanced Audio Video Navigation system with 6.2-inch touch screen. It also features touch screen controls for AC unit, which is first in its class.
2. A huge 510-litre boot compartment can take in your entire holiday luggage.
HCIL has managed to regain its top spot in the C segment, thanks to the 4th gen City. Last year, this sedan set the markets ablaze with its i-DTEC engine option. Now, the manufacturer has rolled out new variants into the line-up with all black interior scheme. The Honda City i-DTec VX Option BL is the diesel version that sits on top of all the variants in its lineup. Powered by a 1.5-litre oil-burner, this sedan delivers a peak mileage of 26 kmpl. This new variant also comes with additional features like rear ISOFIX child seat mountings. On the other hand, the entire City line-up gets dual SRS airbags as standard feature.
There is no modification done to the exterior design whatsoever. The car maker kept the exteriors untouched, since this 4th-gen is just one year old. This new-gen model has a strong resemblance of its predecessor, owing to its aerodynamic body structure. Even most of its external dimensions remain to be the same as its earlier model, save for the wheelbase, which is increased by 50mm. Its front facade has a distinctive style with wing shaped chrome strip. It is embedded with the company's logo. Flanking this are the wide headlamp clusters comprising three segments. Its sides expresses the sporty characteristics with its crease lines. Being the top end trim, this variant gets alloy wheels as standard. These rims have an ordinary design and they are wrapped-in with skinny tyres. Chrome plated outside door handles and body colored ORVMs with turn indicators completes the overall picture. Its rear section has a more enriched look with everything designed in right proportions. There is a small chrome strip connecting both the light clusters and is accompanied by the Honda's logo on top of it.
Honda City's biggest plus point is its interior design. Its cockpit has a wide dashboard with modern design. There is an extensive use of metal inside that renders a premium touch to the insides. The steering wheel on the other hand, features a signature three-spoke design and is mounted with control buttons. There is enough space inside the cabin to accommodate five passengers. The interior design of this variant remains to be the same like other existing trims, except for the color scheme. Its interiors are done up in black rendering it a sporty appeal. The car also gets ISOFIX child seat mountings at rear that adds to the safety quotient. Apart from this, no other update has been given to this latest trim. It is loaded with tons of comfort features, which makes City the strongest competitor in its class. It has features like one push engine start/stop button with smart keyless entry, auto climate control with touch screen controls, reverse parking camera and cruise control system.
Under the hood, there lies a powerful 1.5-litre i-DTEC diesel power plant, which is also powering the Amaze compact sedan. Its really disappointing since the company has not tuned up this motor for City and as a result, it lags behind many of its nearest rivals. The only change that you can notice is that the motor is mated with a 6-speed manual gearbox, instead of a 5-speed gearbox in the Amaze sedan. As a result, the drivability on city roads feels much better. Also, it delivers high torque at low rpms, which eventually results in a better mileage. Leaving disappointments aside, we are completely satisfied with the way it performed. There is hardly any turbo lag and the power delivery remains linear. On open roads, we have reached a top speed of 140 kmph. Until 110 kmph mark, this engine feels relaxed, but once reaching 120 kmph mark, it starts to vibrate.
Ride and Handling:
Handling this sedan is simpler, thanks to the responsive steering. It comes with a suspension system featuring McPherson strut stapled at front and torsion beam at rear axle. Its handling remains predictable and gets better and better as the speedometer ticks up. The steering wheel feels very light and it does add-up to the fun on highways. This is an ideal car for city roads. If you are expecting for sheer dynamics of a European car, then this car won't fit into your requirements.
This C segment sedan comes with an ACE body structure, a signature layout of Honda for high strength. Being the high end trim, it gets all the necessary safety features including dual SRS airbags, ABS with EBD, security alarm and an engine immobilizer unit. Also, it is loaded with features like key-off reminder, day/night inside rear view mirror, driver seatbelt reminder, rear windscreen defogger and other such features. Now, this latest Black Edition trim also gets ISOFIX child seat mountings at rear that further enhances its safety quotient.
Despite having certain drawbacks, City is a perfect sedan for families. It is an ideal vehicle for day-to-day usage. It delivers better mileage, offers decent handling. Also, Honda's fuss-free after-sales and ownership experience are few reasons why you should go with this sedan. However, if you are a performance lover, then there are other models like Vento and Rapid for you to choose from.
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