Please Tell Us Your City
Aditya Chatterjee Aditya Chatterjee Saturday 01 December 2012

The Honda City is the main reason behind Honda’s premium image in India. It has been the reigning dominator of the sedan segment and features in every car manufacturer’s rival list in India.

Honda City

Modern and contemporary design with premium interiors makes the City a near to perfect premium sedan. The quality of finishing in this sedan is the best offered among its competition.

Battling a tough fight against all the diesel options offered by its rivals, Honda City still manages to command its strong position. However, with so many options being available in the market, will the Honda City hold on to its charm is what we find out in our review.


The Honda City has always had the design which looks ahead of its time. Except for the dolphin model, every generation of the City has impressed everyone with its futuristic design appeal.

Honda City

Sleek tail lamps along with the long stretched radiator grille make the front design of the Honda City very sporty. The radiator grille has been generously treated with chrome but very tastefully and does not look tacky at all. The front bonnet flows towards the nose of the front fascia. On the front bumpers is the contrast black air intake vent which gels well with the overall design.

The City is based on the Arrow shot form design which is seen on the raised shoulder line from the headlights to the rear profile. In the mid life facelift the ground clearance of the City has been improved and is now at 165mm which is a welcome change over the earlier offering as the lower section used to get scraped while crossing speed breakers especially when the car was filled with occupants.

Honda City

The 10 spoke alloy wheel look very sporty and so does the slender roofline. The smart and crisp design of the City make it look very athletic compared to its competition.

On the rear profile, the rear boot lip gets all the major attention as it is short and sporty. The tail lamp design is smart and the line descends from the boot through the rail lamp to the lower half of the rear profile which make it look very dynamic.

Honda City looks right when seen from any angle as it does not have any artificial lines which flow out of proportion but instead a smart profile throughout the exterior profile of the car.


This has to be the best cabin of any D segment sedan available in India. Its ultra premium feel and sophisticated treatment combined with the supreme finish of trims makes the interiors of Honda City a great space to be in.

Honda City

On the instrumental panel is soft blue lit display with three rings in an aluminum finish which show the speedometer, tachometer and the fuel left. It is a very clean arrangement. There 3 spoke steering wheel offers a very precise grip, it also has steering mounted controls for audio as well as cruise control settings.

The central panel has been done very neatly with the correct colour combinations of light beige teamed with dark plastics. The plastic quality is fantastic and so it the materials used in the door trims.

Seating inside the Honda City is very comfortable as it has been cushioned really well. Even for taller passengers there is no discomfort of any sort. The legroom and the headroom offered for the front row of passengers is superb while for the rear row of passengers the same is decent.

Honda City

Among the storage options, it has a decently spacious glove box. Also under the armrest of the driver, there is a small storage box. There is a small pocket of the front door trims which can hold few tickets and miscellaneous paper bits. The boot space in the Honda City is very generous too.

Overall the interiors of the Honda City are simply close to perfect and leave no reason to complain. The smart use of chrome inside, materials used in fabric and everything inside the cabin of the City makes you rave about it.


The Honda City is powered by a 1.5 L, 4 cylinder i-VTEC engine which produces a maximum power of 118 PS at 6600 rpm and a torque of 146 Nm at 4800 rpm. This engine is offered in a 5 speed manual as well as in 5 speed automatic options which comes with paddle shift.

Honda City

Before the drive, we reviewed the Air Conditioner as well as the audio system as these two are the ones which do their duty most of the time. The Air Conditioner is effective and is indeed powerful but then my favorite is the one which used to come in the previous generation which was very powerful and did not take time at all to cool the cabin. Also one more dire need is an Automatic climate control option. Music system is nice across all frequencies. Even when played at maximum volume, the speakers don’t tremble.

Coming to the drive, no one can oppose the finesse and performance rating of the i-VTEC engine. It is a treat of every sort. This engine behaves in the exact way we want it to. While commuting, it becomes very subtle. With extremely low NVH levels, this engine is not audible at all. This unit which is matured on commuting also behaves in an enthusiastic way when teased. The way the i-VTEC growls at peak rpms is simply addictive and makes one push the engine really hard.

Honda City

At higher speeds, cause of its aerodynamic design, the Honda City is extremely stable. The steering offers a very crisp feedback and its handling is fantastic. The combination of McPherson struts at the front and torsion beam for the rear make the suspension quality of the Honda City very comfortable. The braking offered is also very impressive.

The raised ground clearance has removed the worries of taking the vehicle on bad roads. There was some customer feedback about the rear suspensions in the earlier version which has been improved in the new version.

Honda City

Even in the safety aspect, the Honda City offers quite a lot with ABS with break assist, dual Airbags for the front row passengers, Electronic Brake force distribution and G – Force control technology in which the structure absorbs the impact and makes the shell a strong cage around the passengers.

Tech specs
Technical Specifications
Make Honda
Model City
Variant V MT
Engine Displacement (cc) 1498
Power PS / RPM 118/6600
Torque in Nm / RPM 146/4800
Gear Box 5/M
Tyres 175/65 R15
Fuel Tank Capacity (L) 42
Dimensions in mm
Ground Clearance 160
Turning circle radius in M 5.3
Length 4420
Width 1699
Height 1480
wheel base 2550
Kerb weight Kgs 1100
Mileage in Kmpl
City 14
Highway 16
Features E MT S MT V MT
Ex showroom price in Rs 826432 882017 937062
Alloy wheels No No Yes
Front Fog Lamp No No Yes
Halogen Headlights Yes Yes Yes
Height adjustable driver seat  No Yes Yes
Advanced integrated Audio No Yes Yes
Seat Fabric Greyish Beige(New) Beige(High Grade)
Steering mounted Audio control No Yes Yes
Rear seat arm rest Yes Yes Yes
Tilt steering column Yes Yes Yes
Power door lock Yes Yes Yes
Power windows front and rear Yes Yes Yes
Headlight height adjuster Yes Yes Yes
Dual front SRS Airbag Yes Yes Yes
ABS with Brake asst Yes Yes Yes
Rear window De Fogger Yes Yes Yes
Variant V MT Elegance 1.6 SX VTVT
Ex Showroom price Mumbai 937062 855236 891466
Engine Capacity (cc) 1498 1598 1591
Power (PS/RPM) 118/6600 105/5250 123/6300
Torque (Nm/RPM) 146/4800 153/3800 155/4200
Gears 5/M 5/M 5/M
 Key Features
Power Steering Yes Yes Yes
Power windows Yes Yes Yes
Central locking Yes Yes Yes
A/C with climate control Yes Yes Yes
Alloy wheels Yes Yes Yes
Integrated CD/MP3 Player Yes Yes Yes
Steering mounted audio controls Yes Yes Yes
Remote  keyless entry Yes Yes Yes
Electrically adjustable ORVM Yes Yes Yes
Driver seat height adjustment Yes Yes Yes
Rear arm rest Yes Yes Yes
Real-time mileage indicator Yes Yes Yes
Immobiliser  Yes Yes Yes
ABS with EBD Yes Yes Yes
Dual airbag Yes Yes Yes
Mileage claimed 16 15 17

The verdict comes as a no surprise that Honda City knows the game very well and seats very high at a very strong position. Petrol heads vouch for the i-VTEC as the most performance friendly unit available.

Honda City

The heat of lack of a diesel motor is there and Honda has been facing it from a very long time as that is the only drawback of the City. As a make gap arrangement, Honda has started offering the City in CNG option but has not hinted on any diesel engine option for the City.

Honda Brio Amaze would be the first Honda sedan to get the diesel engine in India and it would be interesting to see if the Brio Amaze diesel sedan affects the sales of the City even in the slightest way possible. 

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