2014 Honda City

2014 Honda City

The Good:
– Good power and economy
– Great cabin space and features
– Bit more quiet than rivals
The Bad:
– Higher-than-average pricing
– Hard cabin plastics
– Rear drum brakes

Some cars have that one defining feature with which to identify them with. With the Bugatti Veyron, it’s speed. With the Toyota FJ Cruiser, it’s offroading. With the all-new 2014 Honda City? Space. Lots and lots of space.

To accommodate all that space, Honda has had to make some compromises with the exterior styling. Try as they might with an abundance of horizontal character lines, there is no hiding that the City is a tall car, although it’s a much more attractive proposition than, say, the Nissan Sunny. It looks a bit more expensive than most of its rivals, and that’s because it is.

2014 Honda City 7

Inside, there’s enough space to rival a midsize sedan, thanks to a longer wheelbase. While generally airy up front, in the back you can fold your legs and sit if you’re of average height. That’s more legroom than a BMW 5-Series, in a sub-compact sedan! And it comes with no penalty in boot volume, which is also very generous. We’re glad to see that Honda is back to innovative engineering rather than just churning out direct rivals to Toyota products like in the recent past.

The engineering doesn’t end there. The City has a 7-inch capacitive touchscreen in top-spec trim, so it’s responsive to light touches on the big icons, although not the fastest sometimes. There’s also touch buttons below that for the above-average auto a/c, although that just makes it more annoying to change the temperature while driving. There’s also rear a/c vents, smart keyless entry with starter button, cruise control, rear parking sensors, decent CD/MP3 stereo, power windows and mirrors, Bluetooth phone with streaming audio, cruise control and all sorts of ports – USB, AUX and even HDMI. Further features include lots of cup-holders and door pockets, split-folding rear seats, tilt/telescoping steering column, ABS with EBD, and two airbags.

But while the specs sheet is decidedly fancy, the cabin materials are firmly in the sub-compact class, with hard plastics all over, even down to the armrests, oddly enough. There are cloth door inserts though, and the general look of the intricate dash is somewhat interesting.

2014 Honda City 4

The engine remains a carryover 1.5-litre 4-cylinder, still making 118 hp at 6600 rpm and 146 Nm of torque at 4600 rpm. But now it comes with a CVT automatic, which is one of the better applications of the much-hated transmission. It is responsive and hardly lets the engine get too loud. It also helped us eke out a 0-100 kph time of 10.4 seconds in hot June weather, while managing an average fuel consumption of 7.8 litres/100 km, and also keeping revs at under 2500 rpm at highway speeds – all very impressive for a car in this class. Don’t bother with the paddle-shifters though. The gearless transmission’s fake “shifts” were barely perceptible in “manual” mode.

The ride is slightly on the firm side, even jittery in some cases, although that could be down to tyre pressures. Wind and road noise never go beyond moderate levels at speed, and it’s rather quiet if you stay closer to 100 kph, which is a great achievement for a sub-compact.

Unlike the Jazz, the Thai-built City is not the most dynamic of cars though, with well-controlled but noticeable body roll and overly-light electric steering with little feedback. The 185/55 tyres on 16-inch alloys offer decent grip, while the ABS-equipped brakes offer stopping power from high speeds. But, with discs up front and drum brakes in the back, the rear has a tendency to wiggle under hard braking, while the brake-pedal feel is poor at low speeds in traffic.

Still, we feel the Honda City’s above-average price for the sub-compact is sort of justified. In terms of power, space and features, it is miles ahead of its usual rivals. And in terms of pricing, it cleanly falls between the sub-compact and compact segments. Were it not for the hard-plastic cabin and those drum brakes, we would’ve called it a legitimate alternative to the Civic even.

Price Range:
Dh 57,000-67,000

Current Model Introduced in:
2014

Body Styles:
4-door sedan

Engines:
1.5L 118 hp Inline-4 / 146 Nm

Transmissions:
CVT automatic

Setup:
Front-wheel-drive

Suspension:
Front: independent
Rear: semi-independent

Brakes:
Front: discs
Rear: drums

Curb Weight:
1092 kg

Length:
4455 mm

Wheelbase:
2600 mm

Top Speed:
190 kph

Test Acceleration 0-100 kph:
10.4 sec.

Observed Test Fuel Economy:
7.8 litres/100km

13 comments to 2014 Honda City

  • Hany

    Wonderful review, One of the good features also about this car that you’ve missed is its high ground clearance, making it superior in driving thru road imperfections and in the suburbs as I have 2005 city back in my home country.

  • Mohammad

    I think there’s a mistake describing the rear axle as “live” in the specs.

  • nabeal

    But for some reason people dont buy it over here. Back home honda city has good demand.

  • Sunil

    The last line in the review is the most interesting. Summarized it all.

  • Mosa

    I personally hate the interior of Honda cars. It always looks outdated, they should really do something about their heavy-chested steering wheels (pun intended)

  • RayD

    A colleague recently purchased a mid-opt version in this exact same colour. There are no alloys, push button start or sunroof. However the touch screen, Bluetooth etc are all present. The ride is relatively smooth and personally I found the dash layout better than the Civics.

  • Praveen Bisht

    I have 2006 city (Vtec) till date no issue . What i like about the car is the way rear seats fold gives enormous space at back. Worth spending extra Buck on this Car .

  • Ciprian

    My first car in UAE was a full spec 2007 City. Sold it as being an above average sized person, a larger car was needed. Though i loved the replacement, i still regret shifting this fun toy to the 2008 Fivehundred. Only one downside of it: as an aggressive driver i consume more petrol than average people and the city had an awfully small tank. Despite the almost perfect fuel consumption ratio i had to fill it very often.

  • Mohamed

    I just bought new City 2014, the multi function screen can’t connected my mobile Samsung S4, they can’t help till now in the agent

  • Nidhin

    I am planning to purchase honda city 2014 mid option.Kindly give some revies about the car who already bought the same or if u could put ur number in my email,it will be easy for me to clarify some doubts.

  • Shijo Thomas

    I have a 2013 City in Kuwait.. Till now its smooth as a new piece.. Excellent fuel efficiency.. Good control on road.. Just love it..

  • Yaser Alam

    I HAVE HONDA CITY 2014 ITS REALLY VERY NICE CAR COMPARING HUNDAI ACCENT AND TOYOTA YARIS

  • moaz

    its one of the worst offending cars in small sub compact, yaris has shit fuel econ but awsome handling and super ac, while city is huge from inside but shit in handling crap in breaking, and ac that needs two days to cool the car down, its the worst car after reno duster, when it came to handling this car is like a kees from baqala ( the small shopping bag !) it flies away even if some one farts on high way, its scary to control any thing above 80, it has no stability on highway at any speed period! i have drive 50,000 km in 6 months and asap my finances allow i am throwing the worst car i have ever bought! even my 1988 mazda 323 hatch back with 4 speed manual had better handling than this POS! oh and yes cops will ticket u left and right in small car! its an awesome car where speeds will never go beyond 100 but here forget it, rather suck up the bill on yaris fuel econ than this and sacrifice little in space u be much happier, yaris even at 160 sticks to road like a glue its that good! i am done with this POS!

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