Honda is gearing up to launch the 2020 5th generation Honda City in the Malaysian market which also includes an electrified powertrain option. The Japanese brand has announced that the 2020 Honda City will be available in Malaysia with the i-MMD petrol Hybrid engine. The i-MMD technology will be available in the RS trim which is the sporty variant in the line-up and it is rumoured that Honda is likely to launch the 2020 Honda City with the petrol hybrid motor in India around mid 2021.
The new i-MMD engine is armstrong hybrid engine which can power the vehicle solely with electric motors and is said to be equivalent to a 2.5-litre ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) unlike the mild-hybrid technology that is offered on the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz and the MG Hector which only provide torque assist to the engine improving its efficiency in stop and go traffic.
It is speculated that the new Honda City will feature a 1.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder DOHC i-VTEC Atkinson Cycle petrol motor coupled to two electric motors, a setup similar to the Honda Jazz e:HEV sold in the international market. The engine is coupled to a lithium-ion battery pack and an innovative fixed-gear transmission via an intelligent power control unit.
In the two motor setup, the first electric motor is an ISG (Integrated Starter Generator) that provides torque assist to the engine where low end power is required and another is a drive motor connected to the wheels that is able to propel the car by itself in EV mode and also work in conjunction with the efficient petrol engine making up for the low end power developed by the Atkinson Cycle engine.
The drive motor with a single speed gearbox is said to deliver around 109 Hp of power and 253 Nm of torque. The strong hybrid vehicle also comes with three modes a full-electric EV mode that powers the vehicle through the electric motor only, an engine drive mode that powers the vehicle through the internal combustion engine only and power the wheels using a lock up clutch and a hybrid mode that uses both the petrol engine and the electric motor to power the vehicle.
The Honda City Hybrid is likely to arrive in the Indian market around mid-2021 and is expected to be priced upwards of INR 15 lakh, while the standard model is priced starting INR 10.90 lakh ex-showroom.