The all new Honda City made its debut in Thailand in November 2019. The latest generation of the subcompact sedan is now on the verge of being introduced in Malaysia and India, and will gradually be launched in other markets thereafter.
The 2020 Honda City for Thai market comes equipped with 1.0 liter (998cc) P10A2 three-cylinder turbocharged engine that produces 122hp and 173Nm of torque and comes mated to a 7-speed CVT gearbox. This is specifically to comply with Thailand’s stringent Eco Car Phase 2 regulations, whereas as reported earlier, other markets are likely to get different engine options.
It was already expected for the new City to get a hybrid variant, since fuel efficiency is a major concern for most markets and conventional engines are gradually being replaced with electrifications one way or the other. Reportedly the 2020 Honda City will get the same dual-motor hybrid powerplant that has been offered with the all new Fit/ Jazz. The 2020 Fit was unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show in late 2019 and has just been launched in its home market.
Dubbed as e:HEV, the system consists of two electric motors connected to the 1.5-liter i-VTEC petrol engine, a lithium-ion battery pack and a fixed-gear automatic transmission. This powertrain has a combined output of 109hp of power and 253Nm of torque. According to Honda, the e:HEV system in latest Fit/Jazz delivers up to 22.23 km per liter under European WLTP testing cycle.
Honda’s newly developed hybrid powertrain switches between three drive modes – pure EV, hybrid and petrol. The e:HEV transitions between pure-EV and hybrid modes for city driving but on highway speeds, it will switch to engine mode which will be supplemented by the electric motors for on-demand acceleration. In terms of performance, the Fit Hybrid achieves a 0-100km/h sprint time in 9.4 seconds and a top-speed of 174km/h.
In hybrid mode, the system can divert excess power from the petrol engine to recharge the battery via the generator motor. When braking, the powertrain engages EV mode to harvest energy using regenerative braking to recharge the battery.
Camouflaged test mules are actively being spotted on Malaysian and Indian roads which suggest an imminent launch most likely within the first half of this year. We will have to wait to see what other engine options alongside the 1.5L hybrid are going to be offered, and whether the 1.0L turbo is going to be offered outside of Thailand or not.
Honda in Pakistan still has a strong faith in 5th gen City that made its debut back in September 2008. Nobody really knows for how long the 5th gen will be sold in our country. Now with the launch of all new City, the local assembled one has become two generations behind the global model. Only time will tell whether Honda Atlas has plans to introduce the all new City in Pakistan this year, or we may as well expect the company to introduce the out-gone 6th generation City in our country.