Honda Adds New Dimension; City Concept Joins Jazz in Popular Light Car Range

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HONDA Australia has premiered an all-new concept vehicle for the Australian market at the Australian International Motor Show - the Honda City.

The City will add a new dimension to Honda's light car range, meeting consumer demand for smaller, more fuel efficient cars and will complement Honda's current light hatch, the recently launched all-new Jazz.

The City sedan will be introduced into the light car segment which has grown in volume by 33 per cent since 2005.

Sedans occupy 13.7 per cent of this segment, up from 7.9 per cent in 2005 for an overall increase of 73 per cent.

The production version of the City is manufactured in Thailand and will go on sale in Australia from February.

Honda Australia's managing director Yasuhide Mizuno says the City will be a new direction in the light sedan segment, unlike any other sedan.

"The City's appeal is in its styling - a fun-to-drive car with a sporty persona. It has a very spacious interior and will be packed with safety features.

"It will offer sporty styling, excellent performance as well as being fuel efficient - features that consumers demand from this segment," Mr Mizuno said.

The production version of the City is powered by a 1.5 litre EURO4 compliant engine that delivers 88kW at 6600rpm and 146Nm at 4700rpm, the same as the 1.5 litre Jazz VTi and VTi-S. Fuel consumption and emissions are set to be impressively low.

Customers will be able to choose either a 5-speed manual or 5-speed automatic transmission.

The City will be the next model in the Honda range to receive Honda's advanced compatibility engineering body which forms the basis of Honda's GCON safety.

Other models already benefiting from this technology include the Legend, Jazz, Civic, CR-V, Accord and Accord Euro.

At the 2008 Paris Motor Show held earlier this month, Honda president Takeo Fukui unveiled Honda's all-new global hybrid, dubbed the Honda Insight.

The Insight borrows styling cues from the FCX Clarity fuel cell car.

It has a low centre of gravity and a 5-passenger cabin, offering the kind of driving pleasure and roomy interior that customers have come to expect from Honda.

While the Insight Concept's aerodynamic design clearly identifies its fuel efficient purpose, its 5-door access and folding rear seats speak to functionality that is designed to meet the needs of customers with an active lifestyle. …