Honda previews all-new City, now open booking

04 HMSB MD & CEO Yoichiro Ueno and President & COO Roslan Abdullah with the All-New City

In an unprecedented move, Honda Malaysia for the first time surprised everyone by giving a sneak peek into the all-new City, which is expected to hit the local market soon. Apart from that,  the company also took the opportunity to share its 2014 targets and plans.

Honda Malaysia has set a challenging target for 2014 with 76,000 units of sales (47% higher compared to 2012) and 11% market share. Honda Malaysia Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Yoichiro Ueno said, “We expect the stable economy to continue to grow by 4-5% this year and we anticipate the TIV to hit 670,000 units with a 2.2% growth. However, we foresee that due to the recent increase in the cost of living and weak consumer sentiment, there will be a shift towards smaller or entry level vehicles.”

The challenging target comes after a successful year for Honda where the company reclaimed the No.2 position in the Non-National Passenger segment with a market share of 8.9%. Honda Malaysia President and Chief Operating Officer, En. Roslan Abdullah said, “The 2013 sales of 51,550 units was the highest ever achieved by Honda in Malaysia. The gap between Honda and the market leader in the Non-National Passenger segment stood at 1.7% and this is a significant increase compared to 7.1% in the previous year.”

03 L-R HMSB President & COO Roslan_MD & CEO Yoichiro Ueno and Head of Marketing Akkbar Danial

This year, Honda Malaysia plans to introduce a total of 5 class-leading models at a very affordable price. These models consist of new FMC and MMC models including new CKD hybrid models to continue to excite the market. The company remains focused on hybrid models, which are in line with the Malaysian Government’s National Automotive Policy. In order to ensure the quality adheres to Honda’s global standard, new manufacturing technologies and state of the art equipment were installed in the new No.2 Line to enhance the vehicle quality and production efficiency. The Malacca factory is now able to produce up to 100,000 units annually.

To support the anticipated growth of Honda’s sales volume the company will expand their dealership network to 80 dealers and 14 Body & Paint Centers. Furthermore, the company will be increasing the number of sales advisors and service technicians who will be fully trained to ensure service quality to our customers. This expansion will see Honda represented in major cities and primary market areas around Malaysia.

According to Honda, the first model that will be launched this year will be the all-new City. The City has always been known for its perfect balance of performance and fuel efficiency. This 4th Generation City further enhances the advantages of the previous model. It draws on a 1.5L i-VTEC engine, coupled with a newly designed Continuous Variable Transmission (CVT), which was developed under Honda’s Earth Dreams Technology. The enhanced gear ratios offer more efficient fuel consumption and exhilarating acceleration.

The packaging design of the all-new City saw the evolvement of Honda’s “Man Maximum, Machine Minimum” philosophy to the next level. The interior space was maximized to provide superior comfort for both driver and passengers. The rear cabin space is class leading and is the most spacious in its segment.

05 The All-New City

In terms of safety, the all-new City also takes it one class above. This 4th generation will be the first in its segment to offer 6-Airbags, which consists of Dual frontal airbags, Side Airbags and Side Curtain Airbags together with Vehicle Stability Assist (VSA). This is in addition to the standard comprehensive range of Honda’s active and passive safety technologies.

Honda Malaysia has yet to announce the price for the new City but it is expected to be priced between RM75k to RM85k and above. Available in four different variants, the all-new City is now open for bookings at all 73 Honda dealerships nationwide.