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Honda Sensing in India’s New City Hybrid

With the Honda Sense package of safety features, the tech-laden City hybrid will have an edge in the segment.

In the coming months, Honda India will launch the much-anticipated City Hybrid in our market. The City Hybrid was supposed to debut in India over a year ago, but it was postponed due to COVID-19-related lockdowns and production delays.

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Honda Sensing in India's New City Hybrid
Honda Sensing in India’s New City Hybrid
  • City Hybrid to get Honda Sensing tech in India
  • Honda Sensing consists of many active and passive safety features
  • Expected to be the most fuel efficient sedan in its segment

Honda Safety Sense is Coming to The Honda City Hybrid

Honda will add Honda Sensing technology to the City Hybrid in addition to the full-hybrid powertrain. Honda Sensing technology is a collection of active and passive safety systems that are currently unavailable in any Honda car or SUV in India. While some of these features have been available on Honda cars and SUVs in other countries for some time, we can confirm that the City Hybrid will be equipped with Honda Sensing features such as lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist, auto high beam assist, emergency braking, and front collision warning in India. The City Hybrid will also include almost all of the safety features found on the standard City, such as six airbags, ESP, and ABS, among others.

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Honda Safety Sense is Coming to The Honda City Hybrid
Honda Safety Sense is Coming to The Honda City Hybrid

What is known about The Honda City Hybrid in India?

In India, the City is Honda’s oldest nameplate and has served as a strong pillar for the company. Honda has recently started exporting the City in LHD form to countries such as Mexico and Turkey. With the addition of Honda Safety Sense, adding a hybrid variant to the City line-up in India will not only help Honda stay on top of the game with segment-leading hybrid technology, but it will also help dealers appeal to safety-conscious customers.

The City hybrid features Honda’s i-MMD hybrid technology, which is also found in the international-spec CR-V hybrid and the new-generation Jazz sold in other countries. The i-MMD hybrid system in the new City is made up of two electric motors and an internal combustion engine, similar to the technology that powers the Honda Jazz e:HEV for international markets. Under the hood of the new City is a 1.5-litre, four-cylinder, naturally aspirated Atkinson Cycle petrol engine with 98hp and 127Nm.

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What is known about The Honda City Hybrid in India?
What is known about The Honda City Hybrid in India?

The first electric motor, which is built into the petrol engine, assists and serves as an integrated starter-generator (ISG), while the second motor delivers 109 horsepower and 253 Nm of torque to the front wheels via a bespoke gearbox with a single fixed gear ratio.

The hybrid system is also expected to have three drive modes: one that uses only the electric motors, another that uses only the internal combustion engine (a lock-up clutch sends power to the wheels directly), and a third that uses both.

The City will be more economical in urban areas, where it will only run on electric motors, while on the highway, the petrol engine will take over, providing much stronger performance.

Honda City Hybrid is Expected to be The Most Fuel-Efficient Vehicle in its Class

The City Hybrid is expected to be India’s first well-specified’mass market’ hybrid to hit the market. As we previously reported, the Honda City Hybrid achieves an impressive 27.7 kpl in Malaysian test conditions (27.8kpl in Thailand). Given the similarity of both test cycles, we anticipate a similar result for India.

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Honda City Hybrid is Expected to be The Most Fuel-Efficient Vehicle in its Class
Honda City Hybrid is Expected to be The Most Fuel-Efficient Vehicle in its Class

Under Autocar India’s city test cycle, the Honda City 1.5 petrol CVT delivers 12kpl in real-world conditions. So, if we equate the City Hybrid and the standard City under our cycle, we get a real-world figure for the City Hybrid of between 17 and 19 kpl. This could make it one of India’s most fuel-efficient vehicles.

Honda City Hybrid Pricing in India is Expected

We previously reported that Honda aims to sell 250-300 City hybrids per month, which is about 10% of the regular model’s average monthly sales. Because the hybrid is expected to command a Rs 2 lakh-2.5 lakh premium over the petrol sedan, the automaker has set a conservative target and is not counting on large volumes. As a result, the top-end City hybrid variant is expected to cost around Rs 20 lakh on the road.

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