We're still a bit on a high with the all-new Honda City. After all, it's one of the most important cars to be launched this year. It's one of the top-selling models in its segment, and it's also Honda Cars Philippines' best-selling model.

For the past 24 years, the City has grown exponentially and upmarket. In the Honda sedan hierarchy, the City is still a subcompact sedan, but the dimensions speak otherwise. Of course, that is not a bad thing at all. It just means that the City has even more space to offer inside. But how much has this subcompact sedan grown from the previous generation?

Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image
Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image

Longest in class

Even before the fifth-generation model launched, the outgoing Honda City was one of the longest in its class. That version measured 4,440 mm long, making it the second-longest in its segment. It was just behind the Suzuki Ciaz, which currently stands at 4,490 mm. But the new City reclaims that crown convincingly.

The 2021 City now measures 4,553 mm from bumper to bumper, making it the lengthiest subcompact sedan in the market today. That means the new-generation grew by a substantial 113 mm, or about 4.5 inches. It wasn't that long ago when compact sedans were that long. For a comparison basis, a ninth-generation Civic (2012 to 2016) was 4,525 mm long, meaning the all-new City is even longer than a compact sedan from less than a decade ago.

Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image
Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image

Wheel to wheel

Perhaps making the all-new City look even longer is the wheelbase. It's not because Honda extended it, but rather, they retained it. Both the fourth and fifth-generation models share the same wheelbase at 2,600 mm. Still, that's not a bad thing as it has one of the longest wheelbases in its segment. It's just behind the Suzuki Ciaz, which is at 2,650 mm long.

Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image
Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image

Between the mirrors

Aside from length, the 2021 City also gained a few more millimeters between the side mirrors. From 1,694 mm in the previous model, the all-new version is now 1,748 mm wide. That's a difference of 54 mm, or about 2.1 inches. Now, it may not seem like much, but a few inches here and there does a lot for cabin space.

With a longer and wider body, you can expect the 2021 model to offer a lot of space for passengers. Curiously, trunk space is down from 536 liters to 521 liters. Still, with over 500 liters worth of trunk space, it's the biggest in its class by a long shot.

Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image
Is the 2021 Honda City still a subcompact car? image

Height difference?

So the 2021 City is longer and wider than before, but is it taller than the previous-generation? Well, no. The new car isn't as tall as the old one, but not by much. It loses 10 mm, which is about 0.4 inches, so you'll barely notice the difference. But why is it lower? It's down to the ground clearance. The all-new City sits lower to the ground with a clearance of 134 mm (5.2 inches). For comparison, the old City sat 150 mm (5.9 inches) off the ground.

Still a subcompact?

On paper, the City is a subcompact sedan despite its proportions and dimensions. Yes, it can rival some compact sedans in terms of price, but it's still a fair bit smaller than its brother, the Civic. That is why the City in the subcompact segment. While the City is now past the 4.5-meter mark, the Civic is a sizable sedan at 4,649 mm long, nearly 100 mm more than the City.

If anything, the fifth-generation City shows how this segment has become over the years, both literally and figuratively. With its size, we might even see its competitors grow in size in their next iterations. But that's still a little far in the future. For now, the Honda City is the biggest (not so) small sedan you can get today.