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Old 22nd April 2020, 13:26   #1
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Default My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City

Ok to begin with - I am a bike nut. I would rather have 2 bikes instead of a single four-wheeler in my garage. The car for me is more for the family man in me than the petrol head in me.

But it’s not that I don't like cars at all. I love big brawny SUVs love big American muscle cars and do sometimes lust after AMGs from Mercedes and M series from BMW. My favourite car though is a Ford Mustang. Totally love it and hope to own it someday. Although with all the above cars, there was one thing in common. My bank balance reminds me that I cannot afford any of them presently! There were some cars which I could afford and did like though. Honda Civic and City, Ford Fiesta 1.6s, Mahinda Scorpio n XUV to name a few.

How did the City Come about
I had bought my first car in 2010. An i20 petrol. While it was a nice car it was not a car that tugged at your heart like the ones mentioned above. But being my first car and being on a budget at that time it was ok. There was no real problem with it, except for the dreaded steering rack rattle which i20s were famous for. Had the rack replaced and that had taken care of it. There was also an issue of some sound coming from the rear brakes which the company could never fix till I replaced the drums. I did have some good trips with it. The most memorable one being a 1100kms drive from Ooty to Pune in a day!

The old workhorse on her last day with me
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-e7dfd97b37a24e3f9567d39d63a9b82d.jpeg

The turning point probably came in late 2016. My wife and me were on my way to a client on a Sunday evening. A lady driving a Wagon R in front of us swerved wildly to avoid a dog or something on the road. We braked hard and we were rear ended by an Aria in full speed. The car was quite badly damaged. The rear 3 quarter panel had to be changed. After repairs the car was back and as good as new but the already distant relation with the car turned colder. But we still had no plans to buy a new car. As mentioned above the cars I liked, the Civic and Fiesta were long gone, hated the looks of the facelifted 2014 City, as well as a lot of quality issues had started showing up with the newer ones. The Scorpio and XUV were never really considered as we are just a family of 2 and did not need such big cars. Also, my running with 4 wheelers is really less (the i20 did 60000kms when we sold it in 7 years) and a diesel would not make any sense to us.

One boring afternoon in October an advertisement showed up advertising pre-owned cars on Facebook. The dealers name was Shreevas Motors on Marine Drives and they had a nice selection of cars. On a whim I liked their page and was asked to be notified whenever a new car was added to their inventory. Not knowing that I had just made contact with the people from whom I was about to purchase my next car from.

After a month later, at work, I got a ping from Shreevas motors updating me their new stock. The usually send mails every week and there are some lovely exotics like Jaguars, Mercedes, Beemers and even Skodas. Although this week they had one addition which caught my eye immediately. "Celebrity owned 2013 Honda City 30000kms"
Although I had still not spoken to my wife or parents, I gave them a call and inquired about the car. They said the car had just come in, belonged to a famous Indian Cricketer, and I was more than welcome to come check it out. They forwarded me some pictures and I was smitten!! The car looked amazing. They also sent me the complete service history of the car, and also told me that I could check with Honda as well. A quick call to Honda confirmed that everything was in order, nothing was tampered with, and the odometer was genuine. The car had been serviced about 2 months prior to being sold. However, they being in Mumbai and me in Pune they refused to hold the car for me. I on the other hand did not want to go till Mumbai only to find out the car was sold and the whole trip was for nothing. So, came up with a solution. I transferred a token amount to their account, with the condition being that the amount would be refundable if for any reason I did not like the car. They agreed, and a transfer was made. They also agreed to buy back the i20.
On 1st November Dad and I left for Mumbai in my car. Had mixed feelings. Did not know if this was the last time I was driving her. The drive was uneventful, and we reached Shreevas motors by noon. I saw a lot of cars parked but could not see the one we were here for. I thought these guys had sold it or something without waiting or probably got a ready customer and did not wait. Kaivan, the sales manager who we had been communicating with greeted us. Seeing the expression on my face and building anger, he burst out laughing and said the car is inside in the showroom. And there she was. My god it was love at first sight. The sharp pulled back edgy front design, the long side profile and the back with those gorgeous split tail lamps. The interiors were mint fresh, not a mark or soiled piece of plastic or leather (It was the top end V variant so came with leather everything) Everything felt tight and heavy, no pieces were broken or missing, no dents or scratches (a very minor one just on top of the right headlamp). I never knew I can fall in love with a four-wheeler too, being the motorcycle nutcase I am!

There were two things though that Kaivan pointed out

1. The original music system was a high end one which the celebrity owner (can I reveal the name?) had removed from the car. They had installed a very basic one in its place and I must say had not a very good job with it. And they had also completely ruined the center console plastic around it. I was fine, it gave me a chance to upgrade to something nicer and better at a later point of time. (More detailed post regarding the ICE upgrade in a later post.

2.The tyres were at the end of their life. Kaivan offered that they will change the tyres at an extra cost, I politely refused. I wanted to research a bit more before I upgraded to what I wanted.

I'll let the pictures do the talking.

Love at first sight, lovely arrow head design
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-3436c58897b046b58f704a73674af9b9.jpeg

Rear end with those lovely slit tail lamps
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-10c3b03683ee4ae0b5d72efd36af56c9.jpeg

The right side
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-9955b9bc53d54debbe77da9367bda26a.jpeg

The left side
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-bce7b99f1c4146ef89d2239c53abf5e1.jpeg

The front seat
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-7f507afcfe2640638633abf5a3938015.jpeg

The beat-up entertainment system installed as the previous owner had removed the one he had
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-2c35f09a4b644f1b94ae6b63a3ef0abf.jpeg

The rear seat
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-be192a9b22fc4d2db9c840bab14d7d98.jpeg

The Goodyear tyres it came with. At the end of their life
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-50064a22eb9e4a2d8a2035a743f90036.jpeg

We took a small test drive of the car around marine drives where one of the drivers from the showroom accompanied us and explained to us the features etc. This was absolutely the first time in my life I had driven an automatic and my hand and feet were instinctively going for the gearstick and absent clutch pedal all the time. It was amazing how seamlessly the torque convertor was working, and I could barely make out any jerks. The paddle shifts were also really fun to use (a more detailed report of them in the drive report)

After that we got down to a bit of negotiations and finally met a price we were reasonably happy with. We told them to let the token be that we had deposited with them and will transfer the rest before the delivery date. We set the delivery date for Friday, being an auspicious day for us. We showed them the i20 but they offered a ridiculously low deal for it. We decided to not sell it at the price they were asking it for, and to search for some options once we got back to Pune. We found a buyer the very next day for twice the amount Shreevas offered us.

Booking and Delivery
The whole week went by in a flash. Funds were arranged and wired to Shreevas. I went in for an outright payment as the interest rate was really high on a pre-owned car. Also, I kept 20000/- balance subject to final checks on delivery day to be paid in cash. D day was fast approaching. I was nervous and excited at the same time because it was the first time I would be driving an automatic and that too from Mumbai to Pune in evening/night traffic. We thought of taking a driver, but I could not convince myself that someone else drive her first before did once it was mine.

Reached Shreevas by 2:30. The car was washed polished inside out and kept ready for delivery. All formalities done, a small cake cutting ceremony done, pictures taken we left straight for the highway. Thankfully had a non-eventful journey till Pune and reached home without any problems. The hand and feet kept moving about like in a manual and was weird at first but soon got used to it.

Some pictures from the delivery

Behind every success in life are the women in your life.. my mom and wife
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-975c1a2b23af4b9092343d3ad5cb7d80.jpeg

About to set off to Pune
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-237147383de14453ab1ef3f2a32fecf3.jpeg

Home sweet home
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-5672dc244f154d19bb19fde5912e7116.jpeg

What I love about the car
Futuristic design. Not out of place even today
The engine. What a gem!
Parts/spares/service relatively cheap.
Smooth gearbox. Does not lag like the modern day CVTS
Fit and finish from a time when Honda used to not skimp

What I Don't like
Features skimped which even my i20 had
Useless OEM tires
Fuel filler cap is not lockable.
Ground clearance a bit on the lower side.
Weak Headlamps.

Alternatives considered
None. This was an impulsive buy and I was sticking with it once I had made up my mind.

On road price and discounts
The asking price was 6 lacs including transfer. We managed to bargain to 5.6 lacs including the transfer.

Usage
Its main use is well in the City. Weekends are usually taken up by my bikes. A couple of outstation runs have been done but nothing significant. Planning a road trip by the end of the year.

Overall impressions and buying pre owned
I must admit I was never a fan of buying pre-owned. I used to always think that pre-owned meaning getting stuck with a lemon that someone had discarded because obviously there was a problem with it. However, after being on these forums I did come to know that something like pre-worshipped does exist as well. And going through threads like GTO's pre-worshipped cars only cemented that. There is nothing wrong with buying pre-owned cars as long as you are confident, you do a bit of research, and are patient. Sure, you might come across something later on in your ownership, but most modern-day cars are easy to fix and repair unless of course there is some major issue in it. It’s always worth looking into, as you can buy a car from a segment higher up than your budget. Heck I paid less for the city than what I paid for the i20 when new!

Pre-owned or new it’s special when you turn around and look every time you park it
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-68492aa3ab2c41479fd396aa328c83a3.jpeg

Last edited by vb-san : 27th April 2020 at 13:29. Reason: Spacing, punctuation, typos...
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Old 24th April 2020, 19:45   #2
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Detailed drive Report

Engine and Gearbox
I had always heard stories about the legendary Honda Petrol engines and used to always wonder what the fuss was all about. But I have to say after experiencing it, all those stories are pretty much true. I have never experienced such smoothness and refinement earlier with my i20 kappa petrol. The silky-smooth pickup, nearly nonexistent engine sound and the top end power is truly amazing. The car can go on and on even when at full load and on an incline. Also, it being mated to a torque convertor unit, the shifts are seamless and does not have the rubber band effect which most modern day CVT gearbox have. Also, the paddle shifts are handy when you want a sudden dab of power. Simply press down and the car immediately shifts into a lower gear for those quick acceleration or overtakes. However, the real magic is when you shift into "S" mode. The sports mode enables you to hold the gears all the way till the red line and shifts up when you ask it to. Very useful for ghat roads or when you have a full load of passengers or luggage on a steep incline. However, the minute it detects you making a mistake or you in too high a gear at very low speeds it will immediately take over and downshift. The paddles did take a little getting used to but once I did they have been a proper hoot to drive!

The minute you touch the paddle the small screen in the console lights up showing what gear you are in. If you in sports mode it displays “M” assuming it’s for manual. In Drive mode it says “D” before the gear. If you try to upshift or downshift wrongly the screen blinks and goes blank indicating the gearbox has taken over and slotted, you in the right gear
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-f5031412f5f747c59507aa615e311970.jpeg

Screen stays blank if not using the paddles. Would have liked it to be on all the time to display the gear. The speedos are backlight and always on and not connected to the parking lights
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-07718fabbf5e441fb0c659d212781072.jpeg

Running Costs and Service
The car for its class is very economical to maintain. Although the car was just serviced 2 months before, I decided to give it once for a full checkup and service to Ethix Honda (Now Garvare) back here in Pune. I was fully prepared that they are going to come up with something we missed and was willing to have it fixed. Thankfully nothing was amiss, they confirmed the car was in good health. An average service costs between Rs4000 and Rs6000 per service. Although they keep pestering me to give the car twice a year, due to my low running I give it only once a year and that has worked out fine till date. The only thing I have changed till date are the driver’s side seatbelt tensioner and a bush in the left front side shock absorber. Also, when I installed the music system the guy managed to blow up a few fuses. Overall parts are much cheaper than my i20.

The customary drive to Mahableshwar in the monsoons for some divine strawberry milkshake!
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-8c2dbe7d0dd14a97bf01129c9e993048.jpeg
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-215c802d688949cba6fbf490a3dc113f.jpeg

Features
The car is the top end V model, hence came with all the bells and whistles. Alas with Honda there were very few bells to ring and whistles to blow! There was no climate control even in the top variant, it lacks a lockable fuel filler cap. Yes, someone can just press and open the fuel filler cap. It also lacks auto folding mirrors, which is a pain when the parking attendant closes the passenger side mirror and you realize once you strapped in. All the above features were present in my i20 and it was not even the top end variant. The OEM music system the car came with was strictly ok, did not even have a cd player. And the one that was fit in my car was even more useless and rattled so badly I thought the dash board was going to fall off!

Interiors
Although the features were less the quality of the interiors are top notch. The plastics and leather seat covers are of great quality. No squeaks or rattles in what is essentially a 7-year old car. Comparatively my father in laws CRV, my brother in laws Ciaz, and my brothers Polo have lots of rattles. I have read on the forum that Honda's quality has started going downhill and it shows in the newer models that I have experienced. Am glad I managed to get this one! The driver seat is comfortable for someone as big as me, the interiors are roomy for 4 adults. The 5th passenger is manageable but not welcomed. You sit much lower than most modern-day sedans. Gives a sporty connected to the road feeling.

Tires Headlamps and Ground Clearance
So will cover the 3 main issues I have faced with the car in one single post. The Goodyear tires the car came with are pretty useless. Also, as most have reported they are really thin and under tired and don't inspire confidence. Come on Honda, you throw in a 1.5 litre gem of an engine which is more sporty than economical, and then you give tires which are for economy and not at all sporty. After a lot of research, I upgraded to Michelin Primacy 3st 195 section tires. The ride quality is much better than before, and the handling and breaking is far more confidence inspiring.
Headlamps, the less said about them the better. The bulbs are really weak and are strictly adequate for city use but useless on the highways. Upgraded to Philips LEDs.

Ground Clearance: Although it is sporty and all, but it does scrape over really tall speed breakers when there are 4 people on board. It’s not as bad as some of the earlier ones as mine is the facelifted model and Honda had increased the suspension height by 5mm.

Last edited by vb-san : 27th April 2020 at 13:43. Reason: Spacing, punctuation, typos...
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Old 25th April 2020, 12:24   #3
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After doing some research for about a month or so after getting the car I finally decided on a bunch of accessories I wanted. Nothing too flashy or loud just some subtle ones

LED DRLs
I used to always love having DRLs but never got around to fixing them on the i20. I was determined to get the best ones for the Silver arrow and went in for branded Osram ones. They were very steeply priced compared to the Chinese ones but came with 2 years warranty. Using them for 2 years now and no issues till date

LED DRLs in the dark
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-bfba457787fc49138ada8c162884bdba.jpeg

LED DRLs in daylight
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-c8ed5d3dd7fa49c4ab822f82d5902647.jpeg

Headlamp Upgrade
Upgraded the headlamps as the stock bulbs were useless. Went in for Philips Led bulbs. They were plug and play and required no alteration to the wiring. Also upgraded the parking lights to LEDs to match the colour tone of the headlamps

Led headlamps
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-63eb8aa7702840c3ae00da34c2ec38c8.jpeg

Bumper Lights
Thrown in for free as a discount. Not sure if I like them or not and may not replace them if they blow.
They are Chinese of course and have been lasted me since 2 years no issues so far.

My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-61c4487ef1fd4f598d4b6abd4b31d332.jpeg

Illuminated Door Sills
Now this was something that I really wanted to get for a long time for 2 reasons. One it really looks amazing in the dark. And two my parking sometimes is in complete darkness and you often land up missing the step into the car. I was not getting one for my car and the original Honda ones were a steep 6000 with only the front ones being illuminated. Got these at another accessory shop for a cheap 1500. They are Chinese and are doing well for upwards of a year now.

Front door
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-fb60bfc0dbc540ae9adcf02fcd807d58.jpeg

Rear door
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-25c33727831143a3bb47b9ef277a8090.jpeg

Tyres
Once I got the car home the tyre change was priority as one of the tyres was continuously leaking air. Did some research and on this forum the most suggest upgrade was 195 sections. Went in for Michelin Primacy 3st tyres. Not a single puncture in the last 2 years. /15000kms of usage.
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-d3e26973b2744c208b0661efa90d4a2b.jpeg

Blessed
Not really an accessory but equally important are blessing from the Almighty and our priests. Also, that white car is from a time when I did not actually own a car.
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-0af9f214481740848742115a3834d177.jpeg

Last edited by vb-san : 27th April 2020 at 13:47. Reason: Spacing, punctuation, typos...
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Old 25th April 2020, 13:58   #4
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The ICE upgrade

This was the biggest upgrade the car needed hence took a lot of time researching it. I don’t like very loud music but like clear and deep sounds. I was also very adamant to get as close as a “factory look” as possible hence did not want any hacked or jugaad jobs.
Most people had upgraded to Caska which was the upgrade most showrooms were offering. I was pretty sold on it as well but then after seeing it in person o was not impressed much. The interface was laggy and very old school. Also, it was not exactly cheap. After a lot of reading online I finally decided to go in for a pioneer 8890BT head unit. While at it I also changed the speakers, added tweeters and also an amplifier. The center frame was also changed with an original OEM one and that finally got rid of all the rattles. Also upgraded the reverse camera to a higher resolution one and added parking sensors. Did damping as well for the speakers.

The splash screen which comes on when you start the car. This can be customised to any picture

My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-a857814ef728453ba12579e500892485.jpeg

Google maps work seamlessly via android auto. Apple carplay can be used as well
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-96539aa14a1e4062ba08a495004a32db.jpeg

You can control the volume for navigation and music separately
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-97053f579adf4079ae64b72ca8fe4a80.jpeg

Supports music apps like Gaana
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-25cd75cb1b124508b771d891ebe3d0bb.jpeg

Colour and theme of the system can be customised to any colour u want. I have kept it orange to match the colour of the Ac controls.
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-7e512df2f786406e9291eee25294fd42.jpeg

Can mirror your phone and use all functions on it with ease
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-17fcc752f6744a7b9c28aa98d10f6d1b.jpeg

Pressing this little mike button or saying “ok google” activates hands free voice commands. All functions like navigation can be activated by saying ‘ok google navigate to...’
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-824aa33b1d544588abee5ba53b0ca561.jpeg

The mike tucked away neatly behind the mirror
My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City-be25ee26e21b4c40994ddd9a3f706795.jpeg

Total amount spent including fitting was close to 50000/- But it was amount well spent and improved the look and feel of the center console besides adding a lot of functionality like maps and 3rd party music apps. The only problem I faced was that after installation the handbrake light would remain on even though the handbrake was disengaged. A quick visit to Honda solved it as some fuse had blown while installation.

Last edited by vb-san : 27th April 2020 at 13:50. Reason: Spacing, punctuation, typos...
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Old 27th April 2020, 08:07   #5
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Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 27th April 2020, 11:12   #6
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Default Re: My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City

Welcome to the club and congratulations. Here's my 2012 example.
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Old 27th April 2020, 12:05   #7
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Congratulations on buying a brilliant car. I have one and love it to bits.

The next time you change your tyres, I recommend 195/65 section. That will increase your ground clearance by another 10mm and your car won't scrape on any speed breaker again. I have that size and am very pleased with it.
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Old 27th April 2020, 12:19   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamza123 View Post

The splash screen which comes on when you start the car. This can be customised to any picture.
Congratulations on your City. 5.6 for this legendary vehicle is a great bargain.

Quick question on the Pioneer HU, I have the same model in my vehicle, I am not sure how to change the splash screen. Any idea how to change it?
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Old 27th April 2020, 12:22   #9
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Congratulations on the purchase. This is the best looking Honda City (the face lift of previous gen) in my opinion and it ages well even better than the current gen city. I was always under the impression that City had a CVT auto and never knew it had a TC auto gearbox. The engine is a gem and you should neither worry about reliability nor maintenance. This car will serve you well for a very long time. Only fly in the ointment will be the transmission whine when you rev the motor hard.
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Old 27th April 2020, 13:23   #10
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Default Re: My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City

Congratulations and wish you many happy kilometres!

Did you get the bumper replaced or was just the camera hole filled? Anyway, I'm glad you went out of your way to make it look stock!

Being a Honda, you can stick to ASS for the rest of the vehicle's life. I owned a 2012 Brio V M/T from 2016-2019 and service costs even with synthetic oil were extremely reasonable (Replaced everything from brake pads to an entire set of dampers). Just before I sold her, I wanted to fix her up like she deserved so I sourced a new hazard lamp switch, H/L leveller switch and a new gear knob and they were again inexpensive and delivered promptly. I'd recommend keeping an eye out for important service intervals (listed in the owner's manual) since you're not following the standard interval.

You'll also notice that the Alabaster Silver colour you own is really easy to maintain. Swirl marks are not easily visible so you could get it detailed less often if you wash carefully.
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Old 27th April 2020, 13:30   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hamza123 View Post
Detailed drive Report
Features
There was no climate control even in the top variant, it lacks a lockable fuel filler cap. Yes someone can just press and open the fuel filler cap.
Hamza123, The fuel filler cap should not open if the car is locked. It remains open as long as the car is unlocked. If this is not the case then you need to get it fixed.
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Old 27th April 2020, 15:10   #12
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Big mistake! I bought a used Honda City (2009 model) in 2013. For past 3-4 years, I have been looking for a replacement. Nothing looks like like a worthy upgrade and it just keeps on going. I think you are going to be stuck with this car for a VERY long time
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Old 27th April 2020, 18:00   #13
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Congratulations Hamza123 on the pre-worshipped purchase!
Your City looks awesome. Loved your review also.

One doubt, is not the gearbox CVT?
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Old 27th April 2020, 19:06   #14
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Default Re: My Silver Arrow! Pre-Owned Honda City

Hearty congratulations, and whether it's East or West, CITY will always be the best. Right from its inception, the type 1s and type 3s were altogether a blast to drive and own. Barring the Dolphin-ish type two which was an eyesore but had great driveability, and the recent T4s ones which I haven't had an opportunity to drive.

But Hondas do age really gracefully, like the Accent. They have a charm of their own. A well maintained one turns eyeballs even today.

Cheers!
VJ
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Old 27th April 2020, 19:48   #15
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Congratulations on the car! As someone else mentioned, the fuel cap is linked to the central locking.Good to see you've addressed the feature less music system and candles for headlights.
Do post pictures of LED output and installation.
What kind of FE do you get?

Jokes apart, only people who've owned/ heavily driven this model know what it's worth. I only wish it was built better as that can't be addressed, the sound insulation is below par.


However, here is another (2011) model here to stay for a long time.
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