2021 Toyota Vios E vs Honda City S Comparison: Spec Sheet Battle

Updated Jan 26, 2024

Step right up folks, it’s a mid-range subcompact sedan brawl.

In this article...

  1. Rivals duke it out
  2. Exterior
  3. Interior
  4. Engine and Performance
  5. Safety
  6. Price
  7. Conclusion

Toyota Vios vs Honda City: Rivals duke it out

Without a doubt, the subcompact sedan segment is one of the most competitive market categories in the Philippines. For years now, car brands like Toyota and Honda have been duking it out. For Toyota, it has the ever-popular Vios which received a facelifted model and a new top-spec variant this year. In turn, Honda also officially brought in the all-new 2021 Honda City in October 2020. 

So, Toyota Vios vs Honda City, has the better specs? To find out, we’ll be comparing the model’s respective mid-spec variants – the Vios E CVT and the City S CVT. Their prices are within striking distance of each other, and as variants in the middle of their lineups, they represent a good balance between specs and price.

A picture of the Toyota Vios E and the Honda City S head to head

Let's find out which mid-spec variant is better on paper

Toyota Vios vs Honda City: Exterior

In terms of size, the Vios E CVT is 4,425mm long, 1,730mm wide, and 1,475mm in height. It also has a wheelbase length of 2,550mm, and a ground clearance of 133mm. 

Meanwhile, the City S CVT has a length of 4,553mm, a width of 1,748mm, and a height of 1,476mm. It has a wheelbase length of 2,600mm, and a ground clearance of 134mm. 

Toyota Vios EHonda City S

Compare the Toyota Vios E (left) and the Honda City S (right) using the slider

To compare the Vios vs City in terms of size, the Honda-made sedan is both longer and wider than the Toyota model. Otherwise, both cars have nearly identical heights and ground clearance figures. Even the City’s wheelbase length is just 50mm longer than the Vios.  

Vios E 1.3 CVT 


City S 1.5 CVT 














Ground Clearance 


When it comes to exterior features, both are quite similar too. Both come standard with halogen headlamps, LED taillights, and halogen turn signal lamps. They even use similarly-sized 15-inch alloy wheels. The City S however, lacks the turn signal side repeaters that are available on the Vios E. In turn, the Toyota-made model doesn’t have the front fog lamps that are standard on the Honda-made model. 

Vios E 1.3 CVT 

Exterior Equipment 

City S 1.5 CVT 





Turn signal lamps 






Front Fog lights 



Roof rails 



Wheel size 



Wheel type 


Toyota Vios vs Honda City: Interior

Inside, both the City S CVT and the Vios E CVT can comfortably fit up to five occupants. Keeping those occupants comfortable on both models is a manual air-conditioning system. On top of that, both of these models are equipped with fabric seats, and urethane clad steering wheels.

Vios E 1.3 CVT 

Interior Equipment 

City S 1.5 CVT 


Seat Material 



Driver’s seat adjustment 



Steering wheel adjustment 

Tilt and Telescopic 


Air-conditioning type 




Push button 

Seating capacity 

Both also come with manual driver seat adjustment, an analog gauge cluster, digital trip computer, USB charging ports, and a 12-volt accessory outlet.  

A picture of the interior of the Toyota Vios

Inside the Toyota Vios (G CVT variant pictured)

The City S however does come with slightly more driver-centric features. Namely, it has a push to start button and a tilt and telescopic steering wheel column. The Vios in turn only has a turn-key ignition system, and tilt-only steering wheel adjustment. 

For on-board entertainment, the City is equipped with an eight-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, Bluetooth, and aux-in connectivity. It also provides offline navigation, and it is linked to a four-piece speaker system. 

A picture of the interior of the Honda City RS

The interior of the Honda City (RS CVT variant pictured)

The Toyota Vios meanwhile comes with a slightly smaller seven-inch touchscreen with similar connectivity options as the headunit found in the City. It also has a four-piece sound system, though it lacks offline navigation. 

Vios E 1.3 CVT 

On-board tech 

City S 1.5 CVT 

7-inch touchscreen 

Infotainment system 

8-inch touchscreen 

Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, USB, Bluetooth 

Connectivity options 

Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, USB, Bluetooth 

# of speakers 

Toyota Vios vs Honda City: Engine and Performance

Under the hood of the Vios E CVT is a 1.3-liter inline-4 gasoline engine capable of making up to 98 horsepower and 123 Nm of torque. Power is sent to the front-wheels via a continuously variable transmission (CVT). 

A picture of the Toyota Vios's 1.3-liter engine

The Toyota-made sedan's 1.3-liter powerplant

On the other side of the coin, the City S CVT uses a 1.5-liter inline-4 gasoline mill that can produce up to 119 horsepower and 145 Nm of torque.  

On the whole, the City S makes significantly more power than the Vios E. It however, has a slightly heavier curb weight of 1,106 kg compared to the Vios GR-S's curb weight of 1,075 kg.  

For suspension systems, the Vios uses a MacPherson strut-type for the front and a torsion beam type suspension for its rear end. The City on the other hand also uses a MacPherson strut for its front, but its rear uses a multi-link type suspension.  

A picture of the Honda City's 1.5-liter engine

The Honda model's 1.5-liter inline-4 engine

For stopping, both the Vios and the City are equipped with front disc brakes. The Vios however also has rear disc brakes, whereas the City has rear drum brakes. Both cars also use a hand-operated manual parking brake.


Toyota Vios E CVT 

Honda City S CVT 



L15B1 inline-4 gasoline 





98 horsepower 

119 horsepower 


123 Nm 

145 Nm 


Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) 

Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT) 




Do note that the higher-spec Vios G and GR-S variants can also come with a 1.5-liter gasoline mill capable of making 106 horsepower and 140 Nm of torque. The said engine can either come with a CVT or a five-speed manual transmission depending on the variant.  

For the City, the higher-spec V and RS trims use the same engine as the mid-spec City S CVT. Unlike the S which can come with a six-speed manual transmission, the V and RS is only available with a CVT. 

Toyota Vios vs Honda City: Safety

For safety, both the Vios and the City come standard with anti-lock braking with electronic brake-force distribution, hill-start assist, traction control, stability control, and speed-sensing door locks. The Honda City S however, only has four airbags, while the Vios E has seven. Both do come with a car alarm and engine immobilizer. 

Vios E 1.3 CVT 

Safety equipment 

City S 1.5 CVT 



Antilock braking with EBD 



Reverse Camera 



Hill-start assist 



Stability control 



ISOFIX child seat tethers 



Engine immobilizer 



Security alarm 



Speed sensing door locks 


Toyota Vios vs Honda City: Price

Toyota Vios Variants 


Vios Base 1.3 MT 

Php 681,000 

Vios J 1.3 MT 

Php 707,000 

Vios XE 1.3 CVT 

Php 753,000 

Vios XLE 1.3 MT 

Php 801,000 

Vios E 1.3 MT 

Php 851,000 

Vios XLE 1.3 CVT 

Php 851,000 

Vios E 1.3 CVT 

Php 901,000 

Vios G 1.5 MT 

Php 911,000 

Vios G 1.5 CVT 

Php 970,000 

Vios 1.5 GR-S CVT 

Php 1,020,000 

>>> Related: Toyota Vios second hand for sale in the Philippines

Honda City Variants 


City S 1.5 MT 

Php 848,000 

City S 1.5 CVT 

Php 888,000 

City V 1.5 CVT 

Php 978,000 

City RS 1.5 CVT 

Php 1,058,000 

>>> Related: Honda City 2016 price in the Philippines

                      Newest Honda promotion in Philippines today


Toyota Vios vs Honda City: Conclusion

As with most Honda models that came before it, the City S CVT appears to be more driver-centric than the Vios E CVT. It has a tilt and telescopic steering wheel column and a push-to-start button. That’s beside the fact that it makes significantly more horsepower and torque than the Toyota-made sedan. 

A picture of the rear of the Toyota Vios E

Which do you think looks better from the rear? Is it the Vios E?

The Vios E CVT, on the other hand, has more airbags than the Honda-made model. To be specific, it has dual front airbags, a driver’s knee airbag, a curtain shield airbag, and a side airbag. Compare that to the City S which only has dual front airbags and side airbags.  

To sum it up, if you want a peppy, fun-to-drive car that you can still use as a family car, then the Honda City S CVT might be more to your liking. In turn, if you want more safety and don’t care about horsepower that much, then get the Toyota Vios E CVT.  

A picture of the rear of the Honda City S

Or do you prefer the rear of the Honda City?

In the end though, these are just our suggestions so we’ll leave it up to you to choose your pick. For more comparison articles, car news, and car reviews, keep it here on Philkotse.com

Cesar G.B. Miguel

Cesar G.B. Miguel


Cesar Guiderone B. Miguel was born and raised in Iligan City, Lanao Del Norte. He graduated in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts in English degree from Mindanao State University - Iligan Institute of Technology. He previously worked as a freelance writer for various websites, as a member of the Iligan City Disaster Risk Reduction Management's training staff, and as a medical sales representative.

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