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Test driving the Honda City Hybrid: Impressions of a 4th-gen City owner

ADAS features are a great addition. This needs to be factored in while doing any cost comparisons with the sedan's petrol model.

BHPian aniket13 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Went to Crystal Honda, Pune (Bavdhan) with my brother to get the OEM cover for my 4th gen City. The accessories manager requested us to sit as the cover was procured from an adjacent warehouse. 2 glasses of refreshing kokum sharbat (juice) were served - much appreciated in the scorching Pune heat.

Got bored, eyes fell on the new Honda City Hybrid. Immediately asked one of the guys if I could get a test drive. He took my driving license, filled out some forms, and within the next 5 minutes, all three of us were seated in the car. Here's my impression from a brief 15 minutes TD:

Positives

  • Extremely addictive pull - this is not the CVT I've known, or is this the eCVT and new engine combo? Anyway, I have never driven a DSG/DCT, but this eCVT will easily fulfil my adventurous desires.
  • Steering is extremely light with decent feedback (lighter than 4th gen). It does get heavy once you speed up. The car also feels more planted and stable, the suspension is stiffer than the previous gens.
  • ADAS features are a great addition and they work well. This needs to be factored in while doing any cost comparisons vs petrol City.
  • NVH levels are top-notch. Set the gear lever to D mode, release the brakes and the car starts eerily creeping forward without any noise. With minor acceleration I was at 80+ in no time - only noticed due to the ding at 80kmph. This is a massive improvement from my 4th gen City.
  • Decent sound quality. Nothing to complain or rave about.
  • Cabin space and comfort - segment-leading! Not sure what kind of sorcery Honda does to extract this amount of space and comfort in the City - hats off to them for achieving this. Rear seats are as comfortable as sitting on a sofa.

Negatives

  • Tyres are still skinny - but they are not much of a concern as compared to previous gens.
  • Touch-screen is a sore point. It might fulfil the purpose however there are two key negatives - 1) Poor resolution. Makes the already poor camera look even more dreadful. I was struggling a bit to use the lane-watch and parking cameras due to reflections in broad sunlight. 2) Takes away from the overall aesthetics of the interior that is built to near-perfection.
  • Last but not least - Boot space. For someone used to 500L+ boot capacity - the Hybrid's meagre ~ 300L will be a bit of a heartache. This is not only a perfect city car but an equally competent highway cruiser. This could be a deal-breaker for someone used to packing the boot to the brim for long trips, picnics, etc.

Overall, an amazing proposition. The sales rep indicated a 6-8 month-long waiting period for the eHEV and 15-30 days for the petrol Honda City. The booking amount is 10k (I think, can't remember exactly). Only White, Grey and Golden-Brown color options are available for the eHEV "at the moment".

On a side note - really amazing to see movement in the sedan segment due to Honda, VW, and Skoda. Kudos to them! Here are some completely random pictures from the TD and showroom, because why not:

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
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