Behold! The all-new Honda City is here – that’s what people from Thailand can claim. Those residing in countries such as India will have to wait until late next year. Most will agree that the new model doesn’t look much different from the one it replaces. The design is more of an evolution rather than a revolution. Honda, it seems, wanted a conservative approach for the new City’s looks. And yet, the current design philosophy is instantly recognisable. For the first time, Honda will sell an RS version of the City in Thailand.
Honda City RS
There’s a bit of Amaze and Civic in the exterior looks. Indoors, the all-black theme injects a whiff of sportiness but robs the car of the essence of space. For India, however, Honda is likely to stick with a dual-tone theme. The main highlight, by a mile, is the neat dashboard design. It looks upmarket and, with those silver-coloured contrasting trims, further accentuates the sporty feel that Honda has targeted. It is way better in terms of design than the hotchpotch layout of the fourth-gen model.
Now in its fifth generation, the Honda City sits on a platform which is marginally shorter than its predecessor’s. Even with that, the new model is significantly longer and a bit wider. As far as the height is concerned, the Thai-spec model falls short of the outgoing derivative. Depending on the suspension setup and the wheel size, that could change for India.
Features? Well, those will be market-dependent too. However, if we look at the previous record, the Thai-spec and India-spec Citys have shared quite a bit. The new model gets LED-powered headlamps and DRLs, 15-inch alloy wheels (India should get a size larger), an 8.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system, a multi-angle rear-view camera and automatic climate control. These features are in addition to others such as a multifunction steering wheel, ABS, EBD, six airbags, Hill Start Assist and Vehicle Stability Assist.
In the powertrains department, the City gets a new 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder turbo-petrol engine. It produces 120bhp/173Nm and comes mated to a 7-speed CVT (Continuously Variable Transmission). As per Honda, “the new engine provides driving performance superior to the 1.5-litre engine in the previous generation” and can return up to 23.8kmpl as per Thai calculation methods. India might get this powertrain option, in addition to the BS6-compliant versions of the 1.5-litre petrol and diesel engines.
So, there you have it. The new Honda City looks good on the outside, gets a much-better interior and a brand-new engine option. The real question is, will it pack enough to worry the rivals in India?