Used car guide: Honda City GM6 – Better bargain than a new Perodua?

If you're in the market for a brand-new Proton/Perodua budget car, you might want to consider a used Honda City GM6.

With a listed price of as low as RM 40,000, it is very well in your budget if you're shopping for a new local-brand car. It's not that we don't support our local brands, but a used Honda City GM6 offers some good value for your money.

Pre-facelift GM6 Honda City 1.5-litre "S" with facelift-version wheels

Used Honda City GM6 Overview

The Honda City GM6 was launched in Malaysia in 2014 in four variants - S, S+, E, and V. Prices started at RM 75,800 for the S variant.


2014 Pre-facelift (left) and 2017 facelift (right) Honda City GM6

A facelift was given in 2017, removing the S+ variant. Honda also introduced the Honda City Hybrid in 2017. Prices started at RM 78,300 for the S variant (features added).

Engine4-cylinder SOHC i-VTEC
Engine displacement1,497 cc
TransmissionCVT
Max. Power output120 PS @ 6,600 rpm
Max. Torque145 Nm @ 4,600 rpm

The 2017 facelift adds the following items as standard:

  1. LED daytime running lights
  2. Shark fin antenna
  3. 15-inch Alloy wheels
  4. Keyless entry & push start button
  5. Electric-folding door mirrors
  6. Advanced multi-info display
  7. Bluetooth connectivity
  8. Integrated head unit
  9. Steering wheel audio controls
  10. 60:40 folding rear seats

In 2020, the all-new Honda City was introduced, known as the GN2 (1.5-litre NA) and GN3 (i-MMD hybrid).

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The 10-inch head unit and steering controls are aftermarket items. The Honda City 1.5 S has no steering multi-control buttons

Honda City GM6 dimensions

Pre-facelift GM6 Honda City 1.5-litre "S" with facelift-version wheels

Length4,422 mm
Width1,694 mm
Height1,477 mm
Ground Clearance135 mm
Turning radius5.6 m
Fuel tank capacity40 litres
Boot capacity536 litres
Tyre size

175/65R15
or
185/55R16

536 litres of boot space

PROS - What are the qualities of a used Honda City GM6 offer?

  1. Maximized cabin space
  2. Decent fuel economy
  3. Satisfactory refinement
  4. Telescopic steering adjustment
  5. Easily available parts (OEM and aftermarket)

Firstly, Honda is probably the best at maximising interior space in your average car. Fortunately, the Honda City is blessed with this familial trait. Storage compartments are also satisfactory.

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The S variant offers seat back pocket on the passenger side only

The glove box size of the GM6 Honda City is decent

Next is fuel economy. The SOHC I4 engine is pretty efficient. Personally, I manage around 6.25 l/100km with an even mix of urban and highway driving.


It's also pretty refined for a budget B-segment saloon car. It is pretty quiet compared to the local options that we have.

The torque converter CVT is also pleasant. From the GM2 onward, the Honda City utilises this type of transmission.

And for those who like telescopic steering adjustment, the GM6 Honda City offers that. Telescopic steering adjustment is great to help you achieve the perfect driving position. Unfortunately, most B-segment saloons still do not offer this even in 2021-model-year cars (like the Toyota Vios).

*FYI Telescopic steering adjustment allows you adjust the steering position closer to/further from you

Parts and maintenance are easily sourced and affordable thanks to the ubiquity of the Honda City. It shares parts with the Honda Jazz and the City is produced at a grand scale worldwide with India, Japan, and pretty much all of South East Asia selling the GM6.

With that, aftermarket parts are also abundant. You can swap wheels inter-generationally, get an OEM-looking 10-inch infotainment unit, and mix and match trims to suit your liking.

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A 10-inch aftermarket touchscreen head unit looks OEM in the Honda City GM6. Having a large map on display is great.

The original Alpine head unit in the first-gen Honda City GM6

With 4x100 PCD and plenty of offset, wheel choices (OEM & aftermarket) for the Honda City are plenty.

Steel wheel and hub cap combo for the first-gen GM6 Honda City 1.5-litre "S"

The pre-facelift Honda City GM6 is a bargain


Launched in 2014, a pre-facelift Honda City GM6 can cost as low as RM40k. That's actually a great price. And since it isn't too old, applying for a loan should not be much of an issue. 

The facelift version still fetches a high price in the used car market with some units even asking for close to RM70k. At this point, you're better off settling with a brand-new base-spec GN2 Honda City.


It depends. If you're lucky, you can find a good deal on a facelifted GM6 Honda City. Some are in the lower RM60k or upper RM50k region.

If you still want the facelift version but find it overpriced, you can always do your own facelift on the GM6. All it takes is to replace the headlights, grille, and front bumper. A conversion should cost around RM4k with parts and assembly included.

If I'm not mistaken, a new harness is required to make use of the day-time running lights of the facelifted version.

Somewhat related: Review: 2015 Honda CR-V - Spacious And Practical

The pre-facelift GM6 can be converted to the facelift version by swapping out the Headlights, grille, and bumper. Hood and fenders do not have to be changed. Photo: Street Garage facebook page

To complete the facelift, just throw in the facelift alloys which can cost from RM400 to RM750 depending on who you buy from.

The pre-facelift also has knob-type AC controls which are more intuitive.

Air con controls in the pre-facelift Honda City GM6 (knob type)

Air con controls in the facelifted Honda City GM6 (button type)

CONS - Are there problems with a used Honda City GM6?

  1. Fuel pump
  2. Power window regulator

Unfortunately, the GM6 is not 100% problem-free. Yes, regular maintenance should keep it in check, but just be weary of these two things mentioned above.

Some GM6 users have reported issues of faulty fuel pumps. The symptom is simple- it will be difficult to start the car. The fix for this is to get the fuel pump replaced.

Honda City GM6 fuel pump. Photo: 88 Garage Specialist facebook page

There are also occasional issues with the power window regulators especially for the rear doors. (Yet we make Proton's power window problem the butt of jokes). The windows also tend to get slightly stuck if left in the closed position for too long.

The windows also sometimes press too hard against the sleeve and create and unpleasant or creaking sound. Just something to check when you're surveying a used Honda City GM6.



Which spec of the Honda City GM6 should you get?

If you ask me, base-spec is always good enough. However, if things like steering multi-functions and leather seats are important to you, get the top-spec variant. There are many aftermarket parts for the base spec GM6 Honda City, but as always, original parts are the best.

It is totally up to you to choose which variant you like - I just wouldn't recommend the hybrid version.

Aftermarket 10-inch head unit

This particular GM6 Honda City 1.5 S is a family car and we've put on simple aftermarket parts (reverse camera, 10-inch head unit, steering multi-controls) that make it feel well-equipped and rather relevant in 2021.

Aftermarket reverse camera

Some would say get the hybrid version for the extra 'boost' it has, but I wouldn't recommend that. Hybrid systems are more complex and thus provide more chances of reliability issues. 'Hybrid' and 'used' are just two words you don't want to see in one sentence.

Is a used Honda City GM6 comfortable?


As an average driver, I can say the ride is decent. Don't expect much though. Some of you with sensitive ears may find the sound-proofing a little bit unsatisfactory.

Comfort can be improved by swapping to comfort-type tyres like Continental's CC6.


With the right tyres, tyre pressure, and suspension, the GM6 Honda is a pretty comfortable budget car. 

Conclusion

There are plenty of choices for the GM6 Honda City in the used car market. Take your time to shop around and find a good deal. It does have its set of Pros and Cons as mentioned above.

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