Honda Malaysia has officially launched the latest edition of the City in an event earlier this week, nearly a year after the car was unveiled in Bangkok. However, the Malaysian version of the B-segment car differs from the ones sold in Thailand in terms of specifications.
While Thai models are fitted with a 1.0-litre VTEC Turbo engine, the cars in Malaysian Honda showrooms come with a 1.5L DOHC i-VTEC powertrain. The S, E and V variants produce 121PS and 148Nm. while the RS e:HEV variant (available Jan 2021) features a Multi-Mode Drive (i-MMD) system, a first for Honda Malaysia. This setup, which benefits from an added electric motor, allows the RS to pump up the torque figure to a whopping 253Nm (which is currently the highest in its class), although the power drops a bit to 108PS.
Using the i-MMD powertrain and Intelligent Power Unit (IPU), the RS can swap between three driving modes, namely EV Drive, Hybrid Drive and Engine Drive with minimal fuss. Deceleration Selector Paddles allow for power regeneration while reducing the car’s speed without needing to hit the brakes. Transmission-wise, the S, E and V spec cars transmit their power through a CVT, and the RS gets an electric CVT, or e-CVT unit. Fuel consumption of the RS is a claimed 3.77L/100km, while the other variants post a slightly less miserly number of 5.4L/100km, which is still rather respectable.
The outgoing City is by no means a dwarf among its competitors, but the new model has been given a noticeable bump in size. Side-by-side, the fifth-gen City is a massive 111mm longer and 54mm wider than its predecessor, while being 10mm lower. The car simply stretches typical B-segment measurements with its 4,553mm length, 1,748mm width and 1.467mm height. The refreshed exterior still retains the familiar City silhouette, but with updated styling. All variants get LED DRLs and LED rear clusters, but only the V and RS versions get LED headlamps and fog lamps – the S and E variants make do with halogen projector headlights and no fog lamps.
Also exclusive to the RS are gloss black front grille and wing mirrors, carbon-patterned front lip, rear bumper diffuser and trunk spoiler. The S and E feature 15-inch alloys wrapped in 185/60R15 tyres, while the V and RS sport 16-inch items clad in 185/55R16 rubbers.
There are five exterior colours available, namely Passion Red Pearl, Crystal Black Pearl, Modern Steel Metallic, Lunar Silver Metallic and a new addition, Platinum White Pearl.
On the inside, the new City gets a modern makeover with a dashboard layout that is typically Honda: practical but not plain. There’s an air of sportiness, particularly in the RS, which is equipped with Honda’s Ultrasuede seats with red stitching. The seats in the V are covered in leather, while the S and E are fitted with fabric seats.
Rear air-conditioning vents are now standard across the board, a boost to comfort that is further substantiated by the increased legroom.
Found on the E, V and RS variants is an 8-inch infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and AndroidAuto, while the S gets a standard radio. The V and RS are equipped with an impressive 8 speakers, twice as many as the other two variants.
Behind the steering wheel of the RS is a 7-inch interactive TFT meter cluster, a step up from the analogue-digital combination cluster of the other variants.
Perhaps the new City’s most prominent advantage is its suite of safety technology, some of which are never seen before in the B-segment. The automaker’s LaneWatch system, which uses cameras to monitor blind spots and feeds a live view to the infotainment system, is fitted in the V and RS variants.
The RS also gets the Honda Sensing active safety treatment, which comprises Adaptive Cruise Control, Collision Mitigation Braking System, Forward Collision Warning, Lane Keep Assist System, Road Departure Mitigation, Lane Departure Warning, and Auto High Beam.
The V and RS variants also come standard with six airbags, two more than the S and E. All variants have Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA), Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake Distribution (EBD), Brake Assist (BA), Emergency Stop Signal (ESS), Hill Start Assist (HSA), Rear Seat ISOFIX and the newly introduced Rear Seatbelt Reminder. The E, V and RS get a multi-angle reverse camera to aid parking manoeuvres. The RS also has an electric parking brake as well as Auto Brake Hold (ABH), which keeps the car stationary at the press of a button.
Interestingly, Honda has added Remote Engine Start to the City, which lets the driver start the engine via the keyless remote while the doors are locked. This helpful feature allows the cabin to cool down with the air-conditioning first on a hot day. This is available on all variants barring the S.
The RS variant will only be available in January 2021 and its price is currently in TBA status. Meanwhile, the OTR price with sales tax are RM76,800, RM84,800 and RM89,800 respectively for the S, E and V variants. For further information about the new City, visit the nearest Honda Malaysia showroom (do note that due to the different versions of Movement Control Order being implemented in various areas, dealership operation is subject to relevant SOPs). You can also head over to Honda Malaysia’s official website!