Honda City automatic now available in cheaper S variant: A Desperate Attempt?

Priced at Rs 9.10 lakh, the S variant trades a few creature comforts for a cheaper price tag. Up until now, the City automatic was available only in top-of-the-line V variant which costs nearly Rs 11 lakh. Now though, Honda has quietly introduced a cheaper version to grab hold of a bigger share of the not-so-hot petrol automatic sedan segment.

Though on the first look, it might look like a neater option for people planning to buy a sedan at a price less than the 10+ lakh range. But its quite obvious that its a desperate attempt by Honda to hold on to its market share and keep its sales figure steady. The absence of diesel technology is not going to help Honda in the petrol-diesel price war in India. With the automobile giant already deciding not to launch the 9th generation Civic in India earlier this quarter, this decision also comes off as the last attempt to save the brand from its dwindling position. 

Priced at Rs 9.10 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), the City S-AT costs about Rs 70,000 more than the similarly-specced S-MT manual. The car loses out on a few creature comforts although the 5-speed gearbox still comes standard with paddle shifters. It is powered by a 1.5-litre i-Vtec petrol engine producing 118PS of power and about 145Nm of torque. 

As for the competition, the Verna automatic still rules the roost plainly because of the fact that it is also available with a diesel engine. Fiesta automatic on the other hand comes with a segment-first advanced dual-clutch gearbox, however, the car is nowhere close to the City automatic when it comes to overall sales.