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Old 28th January 2010, 21:05   #1
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Talking All New Honda City Black Auto Transmission - 8000kms Ownership Experience Report

In this article I am going to share all my thoughts about my All New Honda City which I bought by April 2009. Before this I drove a Honda City GXi and you can say that I am a die hard Honda City fan. There is something special about the Honda City in terms of price and the features it offers. I believe that with this car you reach a saturation point in terms of comfort travel experience. I have test driven Mercedes C-Class and a lot of other cars. In my experience, as you move from the smallest/cheapest car, say Maruti 800 to higher versions, you will note a significant improvement in comfort and driving experience as you spend more and more. But when you spend nearly 10.5 Lakhs for a Honda City Auto Trans. version, you reach a saturation point in comfort. When you go for higher end cars, the marginal utility with every additional lakh spent reduces exponentially. Say for example you can get a Honda Civic AT for 15 Lakhs. For additional 4.5 lakhs, the level of benefits that you get is very less (if you keep social status thing aside). For 4.5 Lakhs, you could buy almost a decent small car. I may be a little biased towards my Honda City because I love it so much, but this is just my opinion.

I am no where near to an auto expert and you should not consider this as professional advice. Disclaimer given upfront.

First, I was planning to buy a Civic. Auto transmission was very important for me because I am a lazy person who does not want to keep changing the gears. But Civic came to 15 Lakhs when you choose AT. I also had a love for VW Jetta Comfortline which costed around 18 Lakhs. I was confused whether to spend an extra 3 and go for VW or settle with the Civic. This internal debate was going on inside my mind for several months and I was postponing my purchase. One day I realized that I cannot keep driving my old Honda City GXi manual transmission anymore and I felt a need to buy a new car immediately. At that time the New Honda City was launched just 1-2 months back and I decided to take a test drive. I had a preconceived notion that the New Honda City will not be much different from the old one in terms of comfort or performance and I also had an opinion that Honda has just changed the looks to bring some buzz and boost the sales. But when I had the test ride, my notions blasted away. The first thing that I noticed was that the seating position has been improved significantly and my thighs rested comfortably, which did not in my old Honda City. I am 5 ft 11 inches now. The second thing I noticed was that the suspension has been improved. It felt as if I was gliding on the highway and I was feeling like I was driving a German SUV! (Well, thats a bit of overstatement!). Since the price was significantly lower than Civic and Jetta, and also cars were depreciating assets... I decided to invest in Honda City AT.

The Automatic Transmission system comes with Paddle shift and is "intelligent". For example when you are driving the car in the Drive mode at 5th gear in a highway and if you suddenly want to overtake a truck, in manual transmission vehicles we change gear from 5th to 4th and then accelerate. Here in AT you just need to press the accelerator a little more in a quick manner and the car will know that you are in need of sudden acceleration and automatically change the gear to 4th and after you overtake it will change to 5th again. I am not sure whether its the same in other AT cars, but this I find very fascinating.

I am not satisfied with the interiors much, but for the price this is what you will get. I am planning to install leather seats soon and perhaps then the interiors will look a bit better. I am more inclined towards exterior style and performance of the car. I have put a lot of accessories in my car. Since I downgraded my buying decision from the Civic, I was ready to spend some extra bucks to make my car look unique.

Here's the list of upgrades/accessories I have made.
  • Front Grille - 16k
  • Door Sash Molding - 16k
  • Rear Spoiler - 15k
  • Side Protector - 4k
  • Parking Sensor - 4k
  • Sport Pedals - 1.5k
  • Original Honda Alloy Wheels - 57k!
  • Pillow x 2 - Rs.650
  • Seat Belt Pad - Rs.500 Approx.
  • Trunk Garnish - 4k
  • Chrome Finish for Silencer - 2k (I guess)
Now my car looks very very unique. The front grille changes the look of the car so much that sometimes people wonder whether it is a Honda City. The changes I have made allows me to express my individuality and I think these exorbitantly costly addons are an investment to my personal brand image. Well, this is so irrational... I know

I am getting a mileage of 13kmpl on the highways and 11kmpl in city. I am satisfied with these numbers. If you go for a manual transmission version, the numbers will be a little high... I guess 14/16. You can only put high octane speed/power petrol. Occasionally you can put normal petrol in case of emergency as I once did but there is a sticker on the fuel tank lid which say Only Speed or Power Petrol.

After the new Honda City was launched, another version of the same car was launched in another 2-3 months. This new version has beige interiors, chrome handle bars and 5 spoke alloy wheels. I did not like that alloy wheel very much. My 14 spoke alloys look much better. (Of course it costs like hell, it has to!).

My old Honda City does not care whether I wear the seat belt or not. But this new kid does not allow me to drive the car without the seat belts. Just like the Civic, there is a buzzer which will keep annoying you if you don't wear the seat belt. Other safety features include dual SRS Airbags and ABS which are not available in my old Honda City. I believe that ABS is worth every penny. Once in highways during night time there was a check point in the middle of the road and there were no reflectors in it... I saw it too late... at that time I had to turn the car and apply the brakes at the same time. I did and I did not lose control of the car. I have not tested the SRS airbags yet, but will let you know once I do so, he he

Now tell me honestly what else do you need from a car? It goes smooth, it looks good, has the latest safety features and changes gears automatically and last but not the least, it comes from Japan, the land of Samurais. If you are spending for a car which is costlier than this, then you are just spending for the status and brand image and a very little extra performance and safety. I would rather invest in real estate or any other similar appreciating asset than spend more on a car.

Wish you all the best for your future car purchases. Thank you for reading my article.

A REPLY/COMMENT IS DAMN IMPORTANT TO ME... I WILL GET DISAPPOINTED IF YOU READ THIS ARTICLE BUY DID NOT COMMENT!
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Last edited by GTO : 27th June 2011 at 15:19. Reason: Removing excessive smilies
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Old 28th January 2010, 21:20   #2
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karizmafan: Let me be the first one to congratulate you on the purchase, the car looks spectacular with those upgrades. I certainly understand and feel the same about Honda City. Wish you all the best!
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Old 28th January 2010, 21:40   #3
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Yours is indeed a unique City mate ! Congrats. Great choice of alloys. They are pricey yet look awesome. I hope the price you paid was for 5 alloy wheels. Can you also share your buying experience ? Which dealer did you get the car from ?

Last edited by rr_zen : 28th January 2010 at 21:42.
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Old 29th January 2010, 10:16   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rr_zen View Post
Yours is indeed a unique City mate ! Congrats. Great choice of alloys. They are pricey yet look awesome. I hope the price you paid was for 5 alloy wheels. Can you also share your buying experience ? Which dealer did you get the car from ?
Yes, 5 alloy wheels. I got it delivered in Coimbatore TVS Honda Dealer. Buying experience 10/10.
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Old 29th January 2010, 10:28   #5
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Hi karizma Fan, nice car ;-) , looks hot in black. Congrats!
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Old 29th January 2010, 12:39   #6
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I like it. Great one.
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Old 29th January 2010, 13:31   #7
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Only 2 drive gears? How many gears gets engaged in S?
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Old 29th January 2010, 13:46   #8
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Definitely looks great !!

But prices paid for accessories are too high by all means !!
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Old 29th January 2010, 14:05   #9
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Nice car mate. Personally I feel the extra accessories and chrome makes the car look a bit weird, but then I understand your need for individuality, and you can be sure that there will never be another City like that.

Good choice on the Auto and I am looking forward to more reviews from you. The City Auto might well be my next car of choice.
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Old 29th January 2010, 17:58   #10
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Thats one beautiful ride ! congrats .
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Old 29th January 2010, 18:49   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by subscrive View Post
Only 2 drive gears? How many gears gets engaged in S?
All 5 in both S and D. Manual gear changes are accomplished with the paddles on the steering wheel.

Good looking car. I'm not a fan of chrome, so I can't really say it appeals to me personally, but it looks good nevertheless. I think you need to complete the chrome strip across the blackened B pillars to complete the look.

Have fun!
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Old 29th January 2010, 19:43   #12
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Originally Posted by ImmortalZ View Post
All 5 in both S and D. Manual gear changes are accomplished with the paddles on the steering wheel.

Good looking car. I'm not a fan of chrome, so I can't really say it appeals to me personally, but it looks good nevertheless. I think you need to complete the chrome strip across the blackened B pillars to complete the look.

Have fun!
Thanks

BTW, what is blackened B pillars? I am not a techie :(
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Old 29th January 2010, 22:29   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karizma Fan View Post
Thanks

BTW, what is blackened B pillars? I am not a techie :(
The B pillar is the pillar between the front and the back door.
As it is black instead of the of being body coloured, he is referring to them as blackened out B-pillars.
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Old 30th January 2010, 00:36   #14
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Congratulations!!
One question -> do the Honda parking sensors come with a small screen or just a buzzer?
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Old 30th January 2010, 09:28   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karizma Fan View Post
Thanks

BTW, what is blackened B pillars? I am not a techie :(

Quote:
Originally Posted by aman9393 View Post
The B pillar is the pillar between the front and the back door.
As it is black instead of the of being body coloured, he is referring to them as blackened out B-pillars.

aman is right. Your chrome strips cover the window edges, but with the black B-pillar interrupting the full loop, it looks a bit disjointed and stands out as an aftermarket fitment. If you could somehow add small strips so as to make the whole thing a full loop, it would complete the Euro look. As it is right now, it's a bit of an eyesore.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SDP View Post
Congratulations!!
One question -> do the Honda parking sensors come with a small screen or just a buzzer?
You can choose what you want. The buzzer ones are cheap, coming in around 3K. The ones with an LCD screen and camera are considerably more expensive.
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