Honda has unveiled its new City sedan in India, a small vehicle said to share elements with the next-generation Fit to be sold in North America.

Honda Cars India Ltd. (HCIL) unveiled the all-new fourth Generation Honda City, including the introduction of 1.5L i-DTEC diesel engine in the all-new City, scheduled to be launched in January 2014.

The new City has been developed at Honda R&D center located in Tochigi, Japan following market surveys in India, ASEAN countries and other markets for people’s driving needs and lifestyles.

Honda said the development of all-new Honda City adopts Honda’s new global operation reform of concurrent development and implementation of locally optimized design drawings to realize the best vehicle specifications with speed, affordability and low CO2 emissions for our customers.

India, being a key strategic market for Honda in the Asia and Oceania region, has been chosen to lead the global production for the All New Honda City with the 1.5L i-DTEC diesel engine which is already gaining popularity in the country, said Honda. This makes India the first country to manufacture and sell the All New City, which will eventually be sold in 60 markets.

The car is said to adopt the best of Honda’s powertrains to achieve best fuel efficiency performance. The diesel variant of the City will be powered by the company’s 1.5-liter four-cylinder DOHC i-DTEC diesel engine. This engine has been developed exclusively for India considering Indian driving conditions and is based on the Honda’s latest Earth Dreams Technology. The gasoline version of the City will be powered by an improved 1.5-liter four cylinder SOHC i-VTEC petrol engine designed to offer the best balance of engine performance and fuel economy, said Honda.

Focusing on the role and importance of Honda City for HCIL’s business, Mr Hironori Kanayama, President & CEO, Honda Cars India Ltd declared: “with the unveiling of the all new City, we enter a new era of Honda’s dominance in premium cars. City brand has been the face of Honda in India, enjoying strong leadership and popularity in its segment ever since its launch. India has been the focus market for Honda City, thus it was befitting to have the global unveiling of the All New Honda City in India. There has been very high anticipation amongst the Honda loyalists who have been eagerly waiting for the 4th Generation City and introduction of Diesel in the model. We are sure that the car will further strengthen the bond with our esteemed customers.”

Honda said the City has been one of the most successful car brands in India with very high brand equity. First introduced in India in January 1998 and later launched as second generation in November 2003 and third Generation in September 2008, the Honda City has found a great following. It is Honda’s most awarded car winning 12 J.D. Power Initial Quality Awards amongst many other accolades and recognitions.

Honda has not yet revealed fuel consumption ratings for this new generation.