Pros: Visibility, light controls, quiet cabin, unobtrusive gearbox
Cons: Poor multimedia UI, slow touchscreen
Time flies when you are having fun, they say. In my case – given that I have spent most of last month just commuting in the city – time also flies when you are calm, unflustered and patient. And, of course, when you enjoy the car you drive every day. That car is my long term Honda City automatic.
So, what do I like about the City in the city?
The visibility to begin with. You might park sensibly with enough gaps to get the car out at both ends. But your fellow motorists most definitely won’t. That’s when the view over the hood, and a rear parking camera that allows three different aspect ratios, feel like the best things in the world. Who wants to step out in the sun, and look like an amateur driver trying to figure out if the bumper will graze or come out squeaky clean?
I also like the light steering. Now, don’t get me wrong, under that head full of grey hair and for all the talk about convenience, I am an enthusiast at heart. I too love a steering that oozes feel. But, in the city – what with battling bumper-to-bumper traffic, and having to make full lock turns at crawling speeds because an autorickshaw decided to break down right in front you – I’d definitely take ‘light’ over ‘feel’. And the City does light really well.
It’s also a quiet operator. Use your right foot judiciously and the City’s 1,5-litre petrol engine will almost always hover around the 2,000rpm mark. Helped by the smart CVT, of course. And, at this engine speed, you can neither feel nor hear the drivetrain working. Apart from the serenity, this approach has another life changing effect, especially for us, the Indian car user – high fuel economy! We have been getting figures around the 13kmpl mark.
Otherwise, the ride quality at slow speeds is supple and quiet; the seats are comfy enough to lure you into dozing-off for a couple of hours if you are being chauffeured; and there’s enough space for almost all your knick-knacks. The touchscreen and interface of the multimedia system, however, remain the sore points. The system is unintuitive, slow, and in a serious need of an upgrade.
Next month, I intend on exploring my enthusiastic side. I will take up some highway jaunts, do a few runs up and down a switchback, and drive the City with a heavy right foot. So stay tuned.
Vehicle Log -
Odo - 6009km.
Km this month – 1,731km.
Fuel – 135.2lts.
Fuel Efficiency – 12.8kmpl
Pictures by Kaustubh Gandhi
Click here for our previous long term report of the Honda City ZX CVT