Category: Auto

Jeep Compass Review & First Drive

Jeep Compass Overview

The Jeep Compass has been in news since the automaker announced its plans of introducing a vehicle built in India for specifically the Indian buyers. Well, now after a wait for over a couple of years, it is finally here. And, we are immensely delighted that FCA India – the parent company – gave it a go ahead and launched it in the Indian market. The Compass is built at the Ranjangaon production facility with around 65 percent local content. The company has presented it in three trims – Sport, Longitude and Limited – with a total of 10 variants, out which 7 are in diesel fuel trim whereas 3 are in petrol guise. The SUV’s exterior styling is based on the elder sibling, the Grand Cherokee, with several sporty elements.The interior cabin is quite innovative with a plethora of comfort features and storage spaces. Jeep has paid utmost importance to the safety of occupants as it has incorporated as many as a dozen contemporary features. The SUV would also feature a 4X4 drive system, while also getting an automatic transmission.  Jeep Compass price range in India is between 15,16,766/- to 21,37,751/, check for detail pricing of Jeep Compass in Carzprice

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Jeep Compass Design

Like they said, SUVs these days look a bit softer and have lost that brutish SUV design. The Jeep Compass’s design however, manages to be both – modern and premium-looking as well as rugged and intimidating. When you look at it in person, it doesn’t seem very large, but in the rear view mirror, it looks quite large thanks to the wide, square-ish front. What adds that premium touch is the resemblance to the Jeep Grand Cherokee. From the side, it does look quite muscular, but not in an overwhelming way – more like a lean athlete-like rather than a bulky body builder. However, the wheels look just a little too small for the rest of the body and the rear wheel isn’t positioned at the centre of the wheel arch. The rear meanwhile, looks smart and quite interesting with the LED elements in the taillights and the chrome strip running all around the car.

Jeep Compass Cabin

The interiors again reminds one of the Grand Cherokee and the upmarket feel continues inside as well. The top of the dash uses soft-touch plastics which adds to the premium feel. That said, the 7-inch touchscreen could have done without the piano black surround and could have been an inch bigger. The steering wheel feels nice to hold while the instrument pods behind it wear a simple yet appealing look. The multifunction display offers a crisp resolution and a whole lot of information. One of the highlights inside is the gear lever top which is a ball of metal with a satin finish. Thanks to drafts of cold air from the blowers it stays cool and feels nice to hold. Storage space is limited with just a small cavity behind the gear lever, followed by two cup holders behind, and a glovebox under the sliding armrest.The top of the dashboard was finished in black while its lower half and the seats were finished in white. The seats are part leather and the white hue looks good with the contrasting red stitching, but I’m afraid the seats will get covered in grime too soon and start looking dull. Of course, black hued seats are on offer as well. The quality of some of the matte black plastics like the ones on the door panels could have been better but everything inside does have a solid, built to last feel.

Yes. There’s good amount of space at the front and there’s ample legroom and kneeroom for the second row as well. I’m just an inch less than six feet in height and headroom was adequate though taller people will feel otherwise. The rear seatback is set at a comfortable angle and there’s ample under thigh support thanks to the added width of the seat squab. Seating a third person at the back could be a bit of an issue though due to the contour of the seat squab and the transmission tunnel. The feature list is impressive on the Limited version we drove, which is the top-end diesel variant. Six speakers offer a crisp audio quality and the infotainment system comes equipped with both Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The Limited variant also gets a reverse camera with guiding lines and the resolution of the camera is good. Headlights are bi-xenon HID units and offer good illumination in the dark.There are a few misses though. For instance, the inside rear view mirror doesn’t get auto-dimming, and even the driver’s seat has to be adjusted manually. There’s an electric park brake, though we would have liked a manual one instead. On the other hand, the tail gate has to be operated manually though that’s something we would have liked with an automative system. Also, there is no option of a sunroof, which is a glaring omission. The left side of the steering wheel houses switches for the multifunction display between the clocks, but the right side only has a set of blank switches, possibly for cruise control, which isn’t being offered currently.Audio controls sit under the steering wheel quirkily and could have been integrated on the top as well. There is a separate USB port for rear seat occupants, which is a thoughtful addition.

Jeep Compass Engine

The 1.4 Multiair is a Fiat engine and delivers 161 bhp and 250 Nm of peak torque. The engine choice did surprise many with a lot of doubt on whether or not a 1.4 is good enough for a car of this size. So, first up let me allay your fears -it is not just enough, but does well. Even though the engine is surprisingly punchy – it is a bit of a slow starter though, as there is a hint of lag under 2000 rpm. But things get effortless thereafter as the gearbox is mated very well to the motor.It’s very smooth through the changes too, though it’s a bit slower to respond in heavy bumper-to-bumper traffic at times. It certainly has the smoothness to go with the Compass‘ premium appeal as well as its excellent ride quality. Like its diesel counterpart, the petrol too has the ability to swallow mostly anything that comes its way and can take on potholes or bad roads with ease. The steering feels a tad heavier but the 17-inch wheels glide over mostly all rough surfaces with no complaints. Even the mileage that you get on the automatic, 14.1 kmpl, is something that you can’t complain about.The petrol and diesel look identical of course. And the same holds true for the interior save for the auto gearshift! We have already run you through the features in our in-depth drive review on the diesel car and you can read that here. That petrol auto is only available in the higher specs is a bit odd

Jeep Compass Rideing

The Jeep Compass’s suspension set up manages to bring a bit of comfort, ruggedness and impressive handling. It gets a MacPherson strut set-up at the front and an independent Chapman strut set-up at the back with Koni’s frequency sensitive dampers. This system works like adjustable dampers without all the expensive and complicated electrical systems. It uses hydraulic valves to control how much damping happens, depending on the frequency of suspension movement – high frequency (when you drive over bad roads) will reduce damping for better ride quality, while low frequency (when on smooth roads) will increase damping for better stability and handling.

Does it work? Yes! Over bad roads, the Compass while happily absorb ruts and potholes without complaint and it also feels quite rugged. However, there is a fair amount of movement at the rear seat. At the same time, when on smooth tarmac, the Jeep Compass will stay surprisingly flat through corners even when you push it hard. At the same time, steering feels direct, weighs up well at high speeds and offers good feedback too. This makes it one of the most involving cars to drive in this price bracket.

Jeep Compass Safety

The Jeep Compass gets disc brakes at front as well as rear. The SUV comes with as many as 50 safety and security features in form of Four-channel Anti-lock Brakes, full-function Traction Control, Electronic Stability Control, Panic Brake Assist, Hydraulic Boost Failure Compensation, Electronic Roll Mitigation etc. Additionally, the company has incorporated 6 Airbags (side curtains for front and rear-passengers), Electronic Parking Brake (EPB) and Reverse Parking Camera to further strengthen the safety of the occupants. View offers on Jeep Cars from Jeep dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

Jeep Compass Price

Jeep Compass Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 15,16,766/- (Compass Sport 1.4 Multi AIR Petrol) to 21,37,751/- (Compass Limited 4X4 O 2.0 Diesel). Get best offers for Jeep Compass from Jeep Dealers in India

Jeep Compass Verdict

Come to think of it, the dynamic abilities of the Compass are what make it shine as an SUV. Be it on road or off it, the Compass gave us little to complain about with its handling. Sure, the diesel engine is a bit noisy but that’s something that hardly comes in the way of an engaging drive thanks to the well set-up suspension and responsive steering. Boot space could have been slightly better, but most buyers wouldn’t mind trading that for the excellent legroom for second-row occupants. The feature list, at least on the Limited version we drove, is up to the mark as well, which adds to the SUV’s appeal.

Its pricing then is key to the success of the Compass in our country, which is a highly price sensitive market, and we expect Jeep to price it in the 18-24 lakh rupee price bracket. The Compass is certainly a bread and butter model for the Jeep brand in India, and if priced well at the time of its launch this August, will certainly help Jeep rake in volumes and even achieve the cult status it enjoys the world over as an SUV maker.

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Performance & First Drive

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Overview

Think of a Baleno and the first picture that comes to my mind is the yellow rally car jumping really high up in the air. In fact Team OVERDRIVE’s very own Suresh captured the famous click more than a decade back. Production ended a few years later and the Baleno went on to become a cult car. It still is used in rallying – even I experienced one in the INRC and till date, it remains one of my best rally car experiences. Maruti Suzuki makes very different cars today, but they’ve brought back the Baleno label in the form of an all-new premium hatchback. Maruti Suzuki Baleno price range in India is between 5,27,570/- to 8,46,177/, check for detail pricing of Baleno in Carzprice

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Maruti Suzuki finally re-enter this segment. They did start the segment by introducing the Swift way back in 2005. The car was replaced with an all-new model but over the years, the car had lost that premium feel. The i20 and Jazz are a lot more appealing and have proved that larger and more expensive hatchbacks do well in India too. The new Baleno in a way is a larger and more premium Swift. It is Maruti Suzuki’s answer to Honda and Hyundai. The car was very recently premiered in Frankfurt and is now ready to go on sale in India.

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Design

When Maruti decided to segregate its premium range from the usual, it made sure the difference is conspicuous in the look, feel and experience. Baleno is a chic hatchback that gets a contemporary design on the lines of rivals. Reminiscent of Swift, front features honey-comb mesh grille with sleek chrome surrounding meeting with the projector head lamps. Lower side of bumper has air-dams and fog lamps. View from side is pretty impressive too, the tapering widow glass, prominent beltline, flared wheel arches and slightly sloping roof add to the overall appeal. Get to the back and you realise how much attention Maruti has paid to the design of the car. The protruding boot make things stand out for Baleno, other key styling elements like chrome garnish beneath the raking wind-screen, pointed spoiler and well-shaped tail lamps further accentuate the chic tail.

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Cabin

Honestly, car wasn’t very impressed with the interior when we first saw it at the Frankfurt Motor Show last month. And Maruti executives confirmed that the cars given to us in India are closer to production, which explains why it seems a lot more likeable now. The smart all-black cabin looks upmarket and sporty, but there are plenty of parts carried forward from other Maruti Suzuki models, which steals some of the freshness away. We expected the premium-positioned Baleno to use some soft plastic parts on the dashboard and maybe leather upholstery options, which could have made the cabin even better. Apart from this there’s not much to complain about, as the fit and finish is pretty decent for the segment.

The front seats are large, comfortable and well bolstered. Thankfully, the driver’s seat is height-adjustable, which helps get a good driving position. In fact, the tilt and reach adjustable steering further helps this cause. The icing on the cake is the positioning of the switches and buttons, all of which are well within reach, making the cabin ergonomically sound.As desired in this segment, the cabin is spacious and there’s plenty of space at the back too. What’s most impressive is the excellent knee room for the rear seat passengers – something Maruti car buyers were always left desiring more for until now. India being a predominantly chauffeur-driven country, this will not go unnoticed. There’s a spacious boot too, with a very useable 339 litres of storage space.

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Performance

In terms of engine options, the Baleno gets the same proven 1.2-litre K-Series and DDiS DOHC motors. The petrol engine is peppy and rev happy. Power delivery is linear and throttle response is fantastic too. The international Baleno gets the new 1.0-litre turbocharged Boosterjet engine but there is still some time before this new motor makes it to India. The lower kerb weight, however, should make the car slightly quicker than the Swift. The 5-speed gearbox offers precise and positive shifts and is a delight to use. There’s also a CVT option offered for the first time in a Maruti Suzuki hatchback in India. The typical rubberband effect exists and is a pain when you put your foot down on the accelerator. It’s a typical CVT, so it works best in city and when driven at half throttle on the highway. Triple digit speeds come at 1,500rpm so one doesn’t have to give it the beans to extract decent performance from the engine. The fuel efficiency claimed is a best in class 21.4kmpl.

The DDiS unit used doesn’t feature a VGT, so power output is not 90PS but 75PS instead. While the motor offers good driveability and best in class claimed efficiency (27.39kmpl), the more powerful motor seen in the Ciaz and S-Cross would have made it more appealing. Besides, rivals like the i20 and Jazz produce more power. That aside, the engine is refined but engine clatter and noise are slightly on the higher side. NVH levels, however, are lower than the Swift. The 5-speed transmission is tuned well and makes good use of the 190Nm torque.Fuel economy for diesel engine is rated at 27.39 km/l and petrol trims are claimed to deliver 21.4 km/l. The light body weight infers good power to weight ratio which reflects in the performance both in terms of fuel efficiency and while on the go.

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Rideing

Another highlight of the Baleno is its ride. The suspension is set up well for Indian roads. The car doesn’t crash into potholes or bad surfaces and instead, glides over them. There’s also 170mm of ground clearance. We drove over a few bad surfaces and never once did the belly scrape. The steering feel is a lot like the Swift. The electric setup is light at low speeds and weighs up slightly as speeds increase. There is body roll but is controlled and never a concern. High speed stability is impressive though. The new platform is lighter (kerb weight is just 865-910kg, depending on the variant) and more rigid than the Swift’s but that doesn’t make it a better handler. The Baleno is still a good choice when it comes to dynamics especially when compared to its rivals.The Baleno is an international model for Suzuki and is based on an all-new platform, which will underpin future Maruti models including the next generation Swift. In spite of being larger than the current Swift, the Baleno is 100kg lighter and said to be 10 per cent stronger. This not just helps it meet the stringent European safety norms, but also offers excellent power to weight ratio.

The ride quality of the new Baleno is far superior to any of the recent models launched by Maruti Suzuki in India. In fact, we could go so far as to say that it is probably the best. It rides with a certain poise and confidence, and seemed extremely surefooted on the Jaipur highway. The steering is light and reasonably communicative, more in tune for city use. It’s a large car, but there’s hardly any bodyroll or wallowing. Brakes, too, are good for their job, with ABS and EBD ensuring it stops quickly and safely.

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Safety

Dual front airbags for driver and co-passenger and ABS with EBD are standard across variants. The only feature that is exquisite to the top-spec variant is the reverse parking camera. Other eminent equipment aboard include anti-theft security system, front disc brakes, dual horn, auto head lamps, front fog lamps, front seat with belt pre-tensioners and force limiters, pinch guard power window for driver, auto dimming IRVM, driver side seat belt reminder, reverse parking sensors, rear wiper and washer and rear defogger.View offers on Maruti Cars from Maruti dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

On the outside, Baleno gets body coloured door handles in lower trims and chrome finished door handles on higher variants. Honey-comb front grille gets chrome accent, ORVMs come with mounted indicators, back doors get spoiler, projector headlamps with LED daytime running lights and rear combination lamps with LED. Cabin gets metal finish door handles, multi information speedometer with display and leather wrapped steering wheel.

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Price

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 5,27,570/- (Baleno Sigma Petrol) to 8,46,177/- (Baleno Alpha CVT Petrol). Get best offers for Maruti Suzuki Baleno from Maruti Suzuki Dealers in India

Maruti Suzuki Baleno Verdict

The Baleno offers good features but the comfort features vary with the variant. However, all trims offer standard ABS, EBD and dual-airbags. This is a good move from Maruti Suzuki and all other models should offer the same too. The car will be available in four trim levels, namely Sigma, Delta, Zeta and Alpha in both petrol and diesel variants (For more details, read Maruti Suzuki Baleno: Variants explained). The CVT petrol is only available in the Delta (petrol) trim.The Baleno is Maruti Suzuki’s second Nexa product but that doesn’t mean the car has to be priced higher than rivals. We expect prices to be on par with the i20 and Jazz. If it is priced lower, it makes it all the better for the country’s largest carmaker. (Team OD: The Maruti Suzuki Baleno has been launched in India at a rather competitive price of Rs 4.99 lakh). The Baleno has officially returned and has all it takes to get the competition worried.

Jaguar XE Facelift First Drive & Performance

Jaguar XE Overview

The new Jaguar XE sports saloon has been officially launched in India at the 2016 Auto Expo. The most attainable offering from the car maker rivals the likes of Mercedes C-Class, BMW 3-Series as well as the Audi A4 in the segment offering the highly appreciated styling coupled with frugal yet powerful engines on board.

The new version of Jaguar’s most affordable offering, the XE saloon was launched in Indian market at the 13th edition of Auto Expo earlier in 2016. With significant changes made to the saloon both on cosmetic and mechanical front, the new XE surpasses its predecessor in terms of performance, looks and fuel efficiency. Apart from the all-new monocoque platform composed of lightweight aluminium, the saloon uses newly developed engine from Jaguar’s Ingenium family of engines, claimed to be fuel-efficient in nature. The saloon is currently available with a petrol engine and the diesel variant is expected to launch shortly. Jaguar XE  On road price starts from 35,83,811/-. Check for price details of Jaguar XE in CarzPrice

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Jaguar XE Design

You’d find it hard to ignore the brilliance of Ian Callum’s design, of how he has been able to add classic sportscar proportions (long hood, small cabin, stubby boot) to a 4-seater sedan. The sad bit is that, at least in India, the XE is only offered in very ‘safe’ paint options – the Loire Blue colour you see here is the most exciting one of the five available.Still, the Jaguar XE is a sexy looking car – there’s a sort of tension along the body of the car, to make it look like a cat preparing to pounce. The highlights at the front include the headlamps with the signature ‘J-blade’ DRLs, the flowing hood with the prominent power bulge and the recessed grille with the Red Growler badge.

When looked at from the side, the chrome vents on the front fenders, chrome highlights around the windows and the Red Growler wheel centre caps catch your eye. The 17-inch wheels and the 225/55 section tyres look a bit out of sync with the sporty design, but there is a reason for them being the way they are. More on that later.Move to the rear and the XE seems to have suddenly become a bit ungainly, especially because of the rather large taillamp cluster which clashes with the otherwise lithe design of the car. The F-Type inspired lights, with the unique LED guides do look good at night though. Finishing up the highlights are the leaping Jaguar badge on the bootlid and the twin-pipe exhausts poking out near the bottom of the bumper.

Jaguar XE Cabin

The cabin looks great as well with a smart speedboat like wrap-around dashboard that merges into the doors. The handsome tan leather seats are very supportive and the Jaguar XE Portfolio is loaded with features including power steering adjust and a a nice sounding Meridian audio system. Jaguar’s new InControl infotainment system works off a new 8-inch touchscreen display that features great looking graphics and has a navigation function. Truth be told though, Google maps are way more convenient to use. The downside with the Jaguar XE is its tight cabin. Rear knee room is just about adequate and passengers will rub their knees on the seat if there’s a tall person seated up front. A very large transmission tunnel also makes this a strict four seater unless absolutely necessary to fit a fifth person in. Even the boot isn’t very spacious. In terms of sheer space, the Jaguar XE can’t hold a candle to something like a run of the mill Honda City.The sublime interior matches well with the posh looks. Right from the dual colour scheme to the top-notch quality material used inside to the high-end comfort features, the new XE offers a snug cabin. Although there is enough space inside, but the low placed seats are a bit of a let-down.

Jaguar XE Performance

Jaguar XE is a front-engined, rear-wheel driven sedan! You get that vibe the moment you lower yourself into the car – you are sat low with your legs stretched forward, the steering wheel is chunky, you gaze longingly past the two large analogue meters to see a long hood stretching out in front of you.Thumb the pulsating starter and the XE comes to life with a distant growl, the gear selector rises from the centre console and the digital screen in between the display shows the leaping Jaguar motif. Select ‘Dynamic’ mode (other modes include Normal, Eco and Rain/Ice/ Snow) and the instrument cluster turns red, the throttle becomes sharper, the gearbox preps to hold the revs longer and shift quicker, and the steering firms up a bit.The 2.0-litre, ‘Ingenium’ JLR proprietary engine develops 180PS of maximum power at just below the 4,800rpm redline, while 430Nm of peak torque is delivered from as low as 1,750rpm. Paired to an 8-speed ZF-designed automatic, the XE has the right formula on paper. Driving it like you stole it makes you feel that the formula is working; dial in the fact that the XE is fitted with nice paddle shifters behind the wheel to give you that feeling of being in control.

In spite of using a lot of aluminium, the XE still weighs 1.5 tonnes, and that reflects in our test figures – the XE managed to complete the 0-100kmph run in 8.7 seconds, while the almost 100kg lighter Audi A4 35TDI did the same 0.8 seconds quicker.Where the XE really begins to feel like the 3 Series rival it is meant to be, is when you drive it on the twisties. The chassis feels playful, egging you to push the limits on every corner. Switch off the traction control and the XE will step out, but in a very non-seat-staining way. Confidence is further enhanced thanks to the quick, direct steering. The XE’s dynamics beg you to question if the package would have been even better with larger wheels and fatter and stickier rubber.

Jaguar XE Rideing

Making up for the cramped cabin is the fact that the driver is going to have a big smile on his face. The Jaguar XE has a sharp chassis with a quick and direct electrically assisted steering that actually offers a decent amount of feedback. On a twisting road, the Jaguar XE keeps the driver entertained with good front end grip and a rear that isn’t shy to move around a little on corner exits if you turn off the traction control. There isn’t quite enough power to make it drift at will but if you throw it into a corner aggressively it will willing slide. Understeer is well controlled and only comes up when the pace gets very high. Braking performance is strong and consistent and the pedal has a lovely firm feel.

The Jaguar XE has a taut feeling chassis but the good news is that it is not too stiff for our roads. It feels a little firm but remains supple throughout. Even when it hits a pothole there’s never that thud that makes you cringe with the fear that something may have broken. The fat tyres on those small 17-inch wheels are definitely helping here but if you don’t like the look, Jaguar will sell you an optional 18- or even 19-inch wheels. Ground clearance is decent too and we didn’t have any issues with speedbreaker scraping. Overall, the XE rides quite well and also has excellent noise isolation. View offers on Jaguar Cars from Jaguar dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop 

Jaguar XE Safety

Among the various safety equipment armed in the new XE pedestrian contact sensing, interior door handle with separate locking switch, emergency brake assist, power operated child locks, multiple airbags, passive head restraints, ventilated disc units etc are included. On the outside, XE gets a pair of power-folding ORVMs that can be adjusted electrically. Besides, the ORVMs come with integrated clear lens indicators along with puddle lamps and get heated, electrochromic and memory functions. Rain sensing wipers, heated rear screen, panoramic sunroof with electric blinds are some of the other vital external features. The snug interior gets leather upholstered seats, 10 way adjustable electric front seats, driver’s seat with memory function, multi-function power adjustable steering wheel and fixed rear seat with rear armrest including cup-holders among several others.

Jaguar XE Price

Jaguar Xe Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 35,83,811/- (XE Pure) to 44,70,455/- (XE Portfolio Diesel). Get best offers for Jaguar Xe from Jaguar Dealers in India

Jaguar XE Verdict

The Jaguar XE is a rather excellent car, but only if rear seat comfort is not a priority. It keeps the driver entertained and is otherwise a highly refined and thoroughly luxurious machine. As of now, there’s no diesel engine on offer and the Jaguar XE Portfolio at Rs 55.7 lakh (all prices on-road Mumbai) is quite an expensive proposition. The Jaguar XE Pure on the other hand costs Rs 47.9 lakh, which is also about Rs 70,000 more than a Mercedes-Benz C200. That might sound like a much better deal but aside from the 40 less horses, the Pure also loses out on some features. Instead of a 380W 11-speaker Meridian system it only gets a 80W 6-speaker system and the bi-xenon HID lamps are replaced by a set of halogen headlamps. Even the keyless entry has been dropped. Jaguar would do well to offer a Portfolio version with the 200PS engine. Till then, watch this space to see how the Jaguar XE stands up to its rivals. We’ll have a comparison coming up soon.

Maruti Suzuki Celerio Performance & Price

Maruti Celerio Overview

The Celerio might be just another hatchback from the Maruti portfolio for many. However, for the Indo-Japanese auto giant, the hatch has been a potent tool to test uncharted territories. The Celerio was hand picked to feature two crucial firsts for Maruti. The Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) and Maruti’s first indigenously developed diesel motor, the DDiS 125; both first featured on the Celerio before making its way to other hatchbacks. What does the Celerio bring to the table? Let’s find out. Maruti Celerio  price range in India is between 4,23,623/- to 5,42,220/ check for detail pricing of Maruti Celerio in Carzprice

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Maruti Celerio Design

The Maruti Celerio looks similar to its petrol counterpart. The badgingg on the fender and boot mark the difference. The styling of the Celerio is mix of various elements. It has a pleasing front end with twin chrome horizontal slats. Large headlamps also add to the look. The fog lamps have chrome surrounds and the fascia looks appealing. this makes it look attractive. It is a somewhat tall boy design which is apparent when viewed from the side. The door handles are grab type ones and the crisp line adds on to the styling. The wheel well size is perfect and it doesn’t look small like the Wagon R, neither is it too big. The rear of the Maruti Celerio Diesel is nothing to talk about, but is decent with simple looking tail lamps.

Maruti Celerio Cabin

Step inside the cabin and a familiar Maruti layout welcomes you. The dual tone beige and black combination is pleasant and dull silver accents strewn across the centre console look nice and classy.The build quality of interiors has definitely gone up compared to older Marutis. However, compared to its immediate rivals such as the Tiago or the Grand i10, the quality does seem a notch lower. We believe the Celerio scores very high in terms of ergonomics; everything falls to hand very easily and is in just the right spot.

The driver’s seat on the top-spec ZXi (O) variant gets a healthy range for adjusting reach as well as height. Coupled with the rake adjustable steering, and we could get into comfortable driving position relatively easily. There’s adequate support for short trips, but we would have liked slightly more bolstering for the lower back and under thigh for the longer journeys. Also, the integrated headrests don’t support the neck , especially if you are a tall person. The view from the driver’s seat is nice since one tends to sit higher in the Celerio. However, the A-pillar is too thick, so, you will have to be careful while turning at junctions.

The steering wheel is borrowed from the Swift. It gets controls for the audio and calls, the buttons for which feel tactile. The wheel itself has a grainy texture, it isn’t wrapped in artificial leather like the Grand i10.The cluster is a three pod unit that houses a tachometer, a speedometer and a multi-function display that lets you toggle through data like average fuel economy, distance to empty and instantaneous average as well.The centre console houses an integrated music system (that supports USB, AUX and Bluetooth) in the top-trim, and flows into the manual aircon controls. Lower variants get a blank 2DIN slot to fit an aftermarket head unit. The air-con is typically Maruti, which means it is amongst the best units out there. The cabin gets cooled very quickly, and you wouldn’t have any complaints on that front.

The rear bench sits slightly higher than the front seats and is reclined backwards at a comfortable angle. The seats are rather thin, owing to which support and cushioning is average at best. The bench will accommodate two people in relative comfort. However, a third passenger at the rear will be a tight squeeze. Unlike the Grand i10, the Celerio misses out on rear AC vents, but it isn’t a deal breaker in any way.Maruti has managed to wriggle out a significant amount of space on the inside for a car that has such compact dimensions. The interior has no ground-breaking features or anything drastically different than the standard Maruti fare. However, it ticks just the right boxes to be a practical city hatchback.

Maruti Celerio Performance

The Maruti Celerio uses the same engine which powered the cars it replaces. It is the same motor which propels the Wagon R but sees some changes. The 1.0-litre K10B motor (now called K-Next) gets drive-by-wire technology (instead of a mechanical linkage), reduced friction (thanks to redesigned valve springs), high pressure injectors and low viscosity engine oil. The changes aren’t a world apart but do end up improving the performance from the car which now produces the same 68 PS of power at 200 RPM earlier. Being a 3-cylinder unit, the Celerio’s engine has its achilles heel, the NVH is very poor which is amplified by the low weight of the car, resulting in everything from the gear lever to the pedals and seats vibrating at idle (noise isn’t much though but vibes are very intrusive). What the low weight does help in is, it gives the Maruti Celerio slick performance in the city, you do however have to keep the pedal depressed at low speeds to prevent stalling in crawling traffic, specifically in first gear.

The 3-pot unit is quick to respond to throttle inputs at low speeds and moves swiftly in stop and go conditions. However like most Suzuki petrol powertrains, rev the nuts of the motor and it makes an unpleasing whine, the Celerio goes one step ahead and sounds massively coarse near the 6100 RPM redline. The car debuts an improved 5-speed gearbox which although has slick shifts, can be a bit of an effort to use till you get used to the slight stiffness. The 1.2-litre K12 engine in the Ritz and Swift would have made a world of a difference to the Celerio but Maruti Suzuki is focussed on mileage, which the smaller petrol mill will deliver in abundance. Our VBOX runs with both manual and automatic versions of the Maruti Celerio revealed the 0-100 km/hr time to be 15.05 and 15.60 seconds respectively, which is decently quick for a car with such a pint sized motor.

The A-Star was offered with an automatic but Maruti Suzuki has opted for a cost effective solution with the Celerio, which uses an automated manual transmission, technology sourced from Magneti Marelli. This transmission is shared with the manual and doesn’t have a torque converter (thereby returns the same mileage as a manual), instead it uses an ECU to control gear shifts (using actuators), eliminating the need of a physical clutch. There is a creep mode which prevents clutch wear in slow moving conditions while a hold function prevents roll back on slopes. You have the option of leaving the box in auto mode while there is a manual mode as well (slot the lever to the left) wherein you can keep the gear engaged till redline to extract the most out of this mill. The EZ Drive does make driving very convenient but is very jerky and you can feel the clutch being activated most of the time. Since this is an automated manual gearbox, there is no P mode like in traditional automatics (there is M, D, N and R modes). The company claims a fuel efficiency of 23.1 km/l which is quite impressive.

Maruti Celerio Rideing

The Maruti Celerio offers a good mix of space and comfort and it is exactly like its petrol sibling. The ride is pliant and the suspension feels well balanced. It is not too stiff nor soft. The steering too is well weighted and not overly assisted like some other cars in the segment and this feels good. The clutch too feels pretty light, especially for a diesel. While the engine sound intrudes inside the cabin, it gets easily muffled with the audio system on. Overall, the driving dynamics in the Maruti Celerio are better than just acceptable. View offers on Maruti Cars from Maruti dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

Maruti Celerio Safety

Recently, Maruti has offered optional ABS and Airbags across all trims, which is appreciable. This is on par with what the segment offers. In the EURO NCAP tests, the top end version of Celerio scored 3 stars out of 5.The Celerio has the same features for the petrol and diesel versions. The list includes power steering, all four power windows, n dash music system, bluetooth and USB connectivity. The other features are ABS and airbag.

Maruti Celerio Price

Maruti Suzuki Celerio Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 4,23,623/- (Celerio LXI) to 5,42,220/- (Celerio ZXI AMT Optional). Get best offers for Maruti Suzuki Celerio from Maruti Suzuki Dealers in India

Maruti Celerio Verdict

The Maruti Celerio is an improved product, compared to the A-Star whose direct replacement it is. However it isn’t a vastly improved product which makes you question why the manufacturer did not go the long haul in taking a car which bombed so miserly, to the next level. The regular manual version of the Celerio doesn’t appeal much with the EZ Drive model being the only saving grace here. By using the intelligent and cost effective option, Maruti Suzuki will offer the cheapest automatic car in India in the Celerio. Although very jerky, the ease of driving offered by the Auto Gear Shift in the Celerio is sure to appeal to those on a budget. Being a Maruti Suzuki with a vast dealership network and aggressive pricing (for the lower trims), the Celerio is bound to be a success. However if you want a manual hatchback at this price point, there are better options.

Tata Nexon Performance & First Drive

Tata Nexon Overview

Given With the rise in demand for cars with an automatic transmission, it was only a matter ofjust about time before  that an automatic transmission found its way into the Tata Nexon. Especially after it was showcased by Tata Motors at the 2018 Auto Expo. More than 28,000 Nexon shave hit the road since its launch, and it is one of the most sought-after and competitive crossovers in its segment. Furthermore, since the Nexon’s sales break-up between petrol and diesel mills is exactly 50 per cent, they’ve decided to offer the AMT gearbox on both engine options.While enthusiasts wait for this iteration to show up in showrooms, we got a chance to drive the Nexon AMT from Pune to Panchgani, and back. Here’s what you need to know. Tata Nexon price range in India is between 5,94,633/-  to 9,54,695/ check for detail pricing of Tata Nexon in Carzprice

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Tata Nexon Design

To begin with let us first inform you that the Nexon is based on the XO platform which is the same platform that also underpins almost all of their new generation compact cars including the Bolt, Zest and even the Tiago and Tigor.Take a look at the production variant of the Nexon, and you will instantly mistake it with the concept car which was showcased almost three years back at the 2014 Auto Expo with some practical additions. This compact SUV stands apart from the crowd because of certain factors which include its modern looking face, a sloping roofline like silhouette, big extended X like design towards the rear which has been finished in Ivory white ceramic type element that we can also find towards the side profile and also under the front fog lamps. The big 16-inch chunky alloy wheels, high ground clearance of 200 mm, projector headlamps and LED taillamps are some other highlights which make the SUV looks quite modern and well equipped and practical at the same time.

The premium looking front grille has been finished in Piano black and has the Tata logo at the centre while a chrome slat sits on the base of the grille and extends all the way towards the side headlamps edges (Tata Motors calls it a humanity line). The Nexon also gets LED DRL’s positioned below the projector headlamps units. Towards the lower front face, the round fog lamps placed slightly higher to perhaps highlighting the high ground clearance.Towards the side profile is where you will witness all the crease lines and bulges. The muscular wheel arches and the big 16 inch wheels along with black plastic claddings further add to its muscular stance. Just below the window line is where you will also find the Ivory white strip which you will also notice towards the front and rear profile of the SUV. One of the other highlights of the side profile of the SUV is its coupe like sloping roofline which is further accentuated by the Contrasting roof colour.Towards the rear profile the Nexon gets an X shaped element which is positioned just below the rear windscreen. The floating roof spoiler towards the rear also features a LED stop lamps.

Tata Nexon Cabin

The dashboard of the Tata Nexon is designed keeping practicality and ease-of-use in mind. The steering wheel feels good to hold and comes with controls for audio and phone. The centre console gets a floating 6.5-inch HD touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. You get other features like climate control, 8-speakers for the Harman Sound System, voice commands, 2 airbags and rear AC vents. A lot of parts on the inside have been borrowed from other Tata cars. The Nexon also gets a wearable key which can be useful when you go for jogs.

The AC is excellent and even at blower speed 1, the throw of the air is extremely good. The doors open wide and the seats are set at a height, allowing easy ingress and egress. The front seats feel comfortable with good support for the lower back and under thigh. At the rear, it might get a bit difficult to fit 3 people, but nonetheless, both knee room and head space are very good. The front windows are large but the rear windows are set high up and there is no quarter panel, thus making short passengers feel claustrophobic. The cabin is also very practical with a number of storage spaces, including one in the centre console that has been inspired by premium cars. The boot is well-shaped and you can fold the rear seats flat to get a cargo capacity of 690-litres. Quality on the inside is good for most part but certain areas feel a bit cheap.

Tata Nexon Engine

Tata is offering all-new petrol and diesel engines in the Nexon. Both can be upgraded to BS-VI norms as and when the mandate comes in. While the basic architecture of the 1.2-litre indirect injection turbo-petrol engine is the same as the Tiago’s 3-cylinder motor, Tata says that they have used all the know-how from the Zest’s turbopetrol unit and incorporated it here. So while the block remains the same, the engine is lighter than the Zest’s turbocharged unit and also makes 110PS of power and 170Nm of torque. These figures in the compact SUV segment are lower than that of only the EcoSport’s 125PS turbo-petrol engine.The diesel, in the meanwhile, is a 1.5-litre unit that makes the same amount of power as the petrol but a significantly higher 260Nm of torque. Both the engines are mated to 6-speed manual transmissions, with AMTs to be slotted in at a later date. Tata also offers the aforementioned Drive modes in both the variants. The Drive modes can be accessed via the rotary knob and can be changed on the move. The good part about this dial is that whatever mode you’ve selected, there will be an audio note telling you the selection and the colour of the infotainment system too changes a la Mini Cooper style. The dial also remembers the last selection made and sticks to it even after the car has been switched off.

We had a go at the turbopetrol engine first. At start-up, the engine has decent refinement; however, on the move, it is audible. There is some amount of turbolag and the motor isn’t that happy sitting at high revs. What it is happy doing is cruising. At around 1,600rpm, the engine is doing 100 clicks in top gear. Good for those efficiency numbers then. It is also tractable and even at a higher gear and low revs, the engine is happy. For example – 40kmph in fourth gear is possible and the engine doesn’t really protest. But if you want quick acceleration, you need to drop a couple of gears before making any progress. The hairpins up Idukki dam were taken in second gear; however, the moment brisk acceleration was called for uphill, I had to downshift. Rowing through the gears though is pretty much fun as the gearbox is slick. Vibrations are present though and manifest through the pedals and gear lever. However, they aren’t at an alarming level.The diesel, in the meanwhile, sounds as refined as the Brezza’s unit. It, however, is the punchier of the two motors. The clutch is light and has a short travel while the gearshift too is smooth. Surprisingly, the diesel is a bit more eager to rev than the petrol. Tractability remains common for both with the exception that hurried progress doesn’t really require dropping a gear in the diesel. This will be the engine to watch out amongst the two. It has less turbolag and gets the job done in a better fashion.The Drive modes do alter the engine mapping and throttle setting, but over the years Tata Motors has refined it. The Sport mode no longer feels snappy. Instead it is quite linear. Around 70 per cent of our first drive review was done in this mode. City is the apt one for err…in the city while Eco dulls out the throttle response and requires a bit more of patience when hurried progress is to be made.

Tata Nexon Driving

Where the Nexon scores top marks, however, is in the ride and handling department. Ride quality isn’t pillow-soft and you do feel some of the larger bumps, but the suspension rounds off sharp edges brilliantly. The little bit of stiffness in the suspension also means there is not much pitching or bobbing and body roll is well contained despite the Nexon’s height. There is a bit more up-down movement in the lighter petrol car, but on the whole ride quality is really impressive. The steering, borrowed from the Zest, is spot-on and one of the best electrically assisted units we’ve experienced in this class of car. It has a reassuring on-centre feel and weights up perfectly as you pile on the lock. All of this translates to brilliant overall stability, and with a best-in-class 209mm of ground clearance, and lots of wheel travel you really don’t need to slow down for potholes.The stiff chassis, impressive brakes and generous grip from the fat 215/60 R16 tyres give a lot of confidence through corners. It doesn’t feel as keen to drive as an EcoSport and isn’t as surefooted either, but work up a rhythm, keep the engines in their sweet spot and you’ll be nicely rewarded.

Tata Nexon Safety

Tata Nexon comes packed with a plethora of safety features such as dual front airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD), Immobilizer and Seatbelt with pretensioners and load limiters as standard. The high-end variants also boast of Park Assist with Camera, Front fog lamps with cornering assistance, rear fog lamps and speed dependent auto door locks features. View offers on Tata Cars from Tata dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

Tata Nexon Price

Tata Nexon Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 5,94,633/- (Nexon Revotron XE) to 9,54,695/- (Nexon Revotorq XZ Plus Dual Tone). Get best offers for Tata Nexon from Tata Dealers in India

Tata Nexon Verdict

Well! The Nexon is the new generation product from Tata Motors which is quite refined and gets quality materials and plenty of new and exclusive features both inside and outside. It looks good and will attract everyone’s attention on the road. Rumors are that Tata Motors will price this new SUV quite aggressively as well. The Nexon gets both diesel and petrol engines under its hood which gives it an edge over its rival Vitara Brezza along with a 6-speed manual gearbox. Lastly for those who want a well built and premium quality interior with plenty of modern features and practicality can always opt for the Nexon

Hyundai Eon Performance & Test Drive

Hyundai Eon Overview

Small cars are very popular in India and to counter Maruti Suzuki’s dream run in the entry-level A-segment, Hyundai launched the Eon in 2011. The impact of the Eon was immediately apparent, within no time it became Hyundai’s best selling model in India while Maruti Suzuki could feel the heat and had to update its bread and butter model, the Alto, which was being sold unchanged for more than a decade. Everybody who drove the Eon was impressed by the car, Hyundai engineers (the car was jointly developed by the company’s R&D centres in Korea and India) had done a fantastic job of packaging everything so well in this small size that this entry-level automobile never felt basic or cheap. However, there was always one gripe, the 800cc engine which produces 55 BHP of power and 75 Nm of torque, made the Eon feel a bit underpowered. To address the issues of performance, Hyundai has plonked in a bigger 1.0-litre motor in the Eon, sourced from the European i10 and Kia Picanto. Hyundai Eon On road price starts from 3,27,391/-. Check for price details of Hyundai Eon in CarzPrice.

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Hyundai Eon Design

The Eon is built on a completely new platform and to say that the Eon is good looking would be an understatement. Of late Hyundai has adopted their ‘Fluid’ design philosophy and we have seen the results of that on theVerna and the next generation Sonata and Elantra will carry the same design theme. The Eon too uses the same Fluidic design philosophy with the characteristic hexagonal face and the swept back headlamps. The elaborately designed headlamps, massive wheel arches, creases on the bonnet and the triangular fog lamps look cool. All these elements also add visual bulk to the design of this small hatch and this car is sure to appeal to a broad cross-section of people. At the side the shoulder line is prominent and it swoops up along the rear window. At the rear are the massive comma-shaped tail lamps and an integrated rear spoiler which carries on the overall funky look. The rear wind screen in large and the shut lines around the hatch are tight. Hyundai wants its customer to think of the Eon as a modern car which carries a small tag and overall the appearance is swanky it is really hard to think of the Eon as a budget hatchback.

Hyundai Eon Cabin

Hyundai Eon has very well-thought interior. It is airy and has a cheerful feeling to it. The materials used inside are of very good quality and the finishing of everything is done in a very nice way. Being tall, there is a lot of room inside. The legroom and headroom is ample for four adults and a kid to sit in the vehicle comfortably. Hyundai has used a lot of beige colour to make the car feel premium from the inside. The dashboard has been designed in a curvy and flowing way, and the car feels amazing, especially with the price tag it comes with. Hyundai has tried to keep things very simple and as informative as possible. The instrument panel, for instance, has only three neat pods displaying every information about the vehicle. The steering wheel feels proportionate to the interiors and feels good to hold.

The storage inside the Eon is well managed. On the centre column, the Eon gets a good audio system with premium features. The highlight of interior would be the gear shift indicator that aids the driver in saving a lot of fuel. The small budget car also comes with tilt-steering and front power windows for easy access. The centre console features tiny chrome dipped buttons, which looks snazzy. However, Hyundai could have done a better job on this part. Hyundai Eon has good quality seats and they don’t easily fatigue the occupants. The cabin space, however, is smaller than that of Alto or even Nano. With a boot space of 215 lires, the Hyundai Eon offers a good amount of space for the price it comes at. Even though the Hyundai Eon is an entry-level hatchback in the market, it is equipped with advanced features. The car gets integrated music system with many advanced features, like radio, CD player, AUX-in, ipod connectivity and USB. These features are often missing from most of the expensive cars and Hyundai has done a good job by providing these unexpected features in the vehicle. There is a set-up of four speakers in the car, which plays the sound relatively well. To manage the space in a better way; Hyundai has installed accessories, like rear parcel tray, cup holders and bottle holders around the vehicle. There are also map pockets and floor console storage for additional space. Hyundai has really thought well about the Eon and its space management.

Hyundai Eon Performance

The Hyundai Eon in India gets a 3-cylinder engine that was developed at Hyundai’s R&D centre in Hyderabad. It’s the same engine as in the i10 with one cylinder removed to reduce displacement. It makes 56PS of max power along with 75Nm of torque which is the best in class. Driveability isn’t great with max torque being generated at a fairly high 4000rpm which means you have to constantly shift down to lower gears. In urban areas you will find yourself using second and third gears constantly and that also keeps the revs high.

At engine speeds above 3000rpm it sounds buzzy and scratchy and the sound only dies out considerably when you shift to higher gears and keep the revs low and that largely happens on the highway. Yet its NVH is within comfortable limits and unless revved hard this engine is a quiet operator. It’s also very similar in feel to the Alto’s 800cc engine, in first gear there is a small flat spot under 1500 rpm that intermittently also shows up in second gear. At times unless revved hard it feels like the engine is dying out even though you’ve engaged first gear and released the clutch. The 5-speed transmission is smooth to operate, however on another car it felt notchy. I guess these are some of the consistency issues that Hyundai will have to sort out. The ratios nonetheless are spaced out quite a bit to provide the best fuel efficiency rather than performance, yet first to third gears sees the Eon gain momentum quickly enough.

Hyundai Eon Driving

The old Eon wasn’t a handler and the new one is no different. The steering is light at low speeds but just doesn’t weigh up at high speeds and that really robs away confidence even at 80 km/hr. In fact, the steering is so numb at high speeds that there is almost no feedback felt by the driver, this is simply not the car to drive enthusiastically. The brakes are strong though but again, the car doesn’t maintain its line on hard braking and twitches a lot. Ride quality is good, the suspension is softly sprung which makes the Eon bob at high speeds, robbing away stability and bad bumps do unsettle passengers. For city speeds though, the Eon’s suspension is more than up for the task to insulate all that’s thrown at it.

Hyundai Eon Safety

Driver airbag is optional from D-Lite + onwards and is a standard provision on the top end variant while missing out on the entry level trim. Other safety features like central locking, keyless entry, front fog lamps, engine immobilizer, seat belts in front & rear and inside rear view mirror are offered on the hatchback.

Hyundai Eon Price

Hyundai Eon Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 3,27,391/- (EON D Lite) to 4,56,201/- (EON Magna O Optional). Get best offers for Hyundai Eon from Hyundai Dealers in India

Hyundai Eon Verdict

That the Eon is the entry level hatch to buy is no question about. The interior and exterior styling makes this hatch look stylish and gives it a wide appeal. Because of how it is styled, you’re made to believe you are paying less for it. Interior space while not as good as the Tata Nano, is good enough for four passengers and the feature list for a hatch of its price is good. The engine isn’t as refined as the Alto K10 and neither is the performance as strong as its rival, but it’s good enough to get by and the fuel efficiency is good. Ride quality is one of the Eon’s strength and the handling is good as well. Hyundai has packaged the Eon brilliantly and its swanky appearance makes you believe that you’re buying not a budget hatch but a modern car and therein lies its appeal.

Toyota Innova Crysta Engine & Test Drive

Toyota Innova Crysta Overview

This MPV is one of the most recognised and respected in India and for a good reason. Since its launch in 2005 the Toyota Innova has been the best-selling premium MPV in our market and this is despite its price going up by a whopping Rs 6 lakh in its lifespan of 11 years. So what qualities did this Toyota possess, that despite being overtly expensive and being more than decade old, tight-fisted Indians were still flocking the Toyota showrooms? The answer is simple – peace of mind ownership. There are still lakhs of old Innova’s running on our roads with lakhs of kilometres on the odo and still feeling indestructible. This is testament to the thorough reliability and engineering know-how of Toyota for which the buyers are ready to shell out the extra moolah for. Now Toyota is about to launch the next generation of the MPV and after driving the new Innova Crysta one thing is clear, they are going more upmarket with this one, with a more sculpted styling and a completely redesigned interior which boasts of segment first features. Toyota Innova Crysta On road price starts from 13,91,737/-. Check for price details of Toyota Innova Crysta in CarzPrice.

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Toyota Innova Crysta Exteriors

When you set eyes on the new Innova Crysta it’s obvious that Toyota wanted to take its MPV to a more luxurious and desirable place. And it shows in its design. The exterior is dominated by the two-slat hexagonal grille that runs vertically down the bumper. Toyota says this was done to make the car look wider. The grille is flanked by nice looking sweptback double barrel projector-halogen headlamps with DRLs. And that’s followed by the angled fog lamps lower down. What completes the striking fascia is the sharp lines with which the bonnet connects to this dramatic front end.

Move on to the sides and you are greeted by the earlier Innova’s characteristic MPV boxy cues. Toyota has tried to mask this look by smartly opting to use a sloping angular design for the third row window. Also, while the overall profile of the rear remains the same, the tail lamps are new and extend under the window. Engineers have incorporated fins on to the edges of the tail lamps and door mirror plates to aide streamlining. That said, the body lines from the wheel arches and the belt line meet at the rear bumper which sleekly surround the boot opening. This design imparts an unmistakeable premium look to the Crysta.

Toyota Innova Crysta Interiors

Arguably the biggest transformation has happened on the inside and the cabin feels spacious, open and crisply styled. The modern dashboard looks fresh, is well detailed and the swooping dash top looks really great without being overdone. Details like the single piece of metal strip which runs across the top of the dashboard looks premium and classy. Visibility from the high front seats is good and this makes it easy to drive especially in traffic.Despite the swooping dash, ergonomics are spot-on and everything from the touchscreen to the Air-con controls are tilted upwards for ease of use. The blue backlit instrument cluster looks modern and the digital centre screen hosts a comprehensive trip computer. USB and aux-in ports are cleverly placed in the middle for an easy access for front and rear passengers. As an observation we would have preferred more USB ports especially considering it’s a premium seven seater. The touchscreen is intuitive to use and it host various information like satellite navigation, eco display (which shows how efficiently you are driving), Bluetooth telephony and music system controls. On the downside I would have preferred the volume control to be a knob for easier access while driving.

As far as upholstery is concerned the top of the line ZX variant gets leather seats. But while in the manual transmission variant you get an all-black cabin which looks sporty, the automatic features a more classy brown upholstery. Overall quality especially on the upper portion of the dashboard is quite good and Toyota has added some elements to justify the high asking price. The touch points like the armrest on the doorpad is covered in soft velvety fabric, the chunky leather wrapped steering with large control button is great to hold, the gloss black finish on the front doorpads look classy (weirdly the rear doorpad gets wood finish) and even the control stalks are of high order. But considering it’s an expensive car we expected better consistency especially lower down in the cabin.The sea of black hard plastics around the glovebox, cupholders and doorpads look shiny and the graining could have been better too. Even the air-con buttons are too small and the chrome finish doesn’t look very convincing. We also felt that although the old Innova didn’t have the premium leather dash top and modern design, it had better quality consistency across the cabin.

Thanks to the larger dimensions the cabin feels wider and is more spacious than before. Seat comfort is first rate and the contoured front buckets are very comfortable. The driver seat in this top Z variant is powered too, and combined with the telescopic steering adjust, finding an ideal driving position is extremely easy. The middle row sees the biggest improvement and the extra cabin width has allowed Toyota engineers to give larger and more accommodating captain seats.The middle-row buckets are supportive, underthigh support is really good and the reclining backrest makes this a great chauffer-driven car. The ceiling mounted blue ambient lighting and the large glass area makes this a great place to be in.Even the front passenger seat can be adjusted using a well designed lever from the back. If you love working on the go, the foldable trays in the back are placed at an ideal height and their 7 kg weight capacity make them perfect to place your laptops on.

The third row though is not a huge improvement over the old car and the combination of the high floor and low seat makes it comfy only for short stints. You also get a removable headrest for the middle passenger (how will he fit in the narrow seat is a different matter) and all three occupants get three point seatbelts.Visibility from the third row though is hampered by the stylish triangular quarter glass. With all three rows up, boot space is reasonable and can be extended by folding the last row when not in use.

Toyota Innova Crysta Performance

So the updates to the exterior and interior are both huge improvements, but there’s even more good news in store. The Innova Crysta comes with two entirely new diesel engines, a 2.4-litre with a five-speed manual gearbox, and a 2.8-litre with a six-speed automatic gearbox. The 2.4 manual first, and when compared to the old 2.5-litre engine, there are some similarities. This one too is not very refined, sounding a bit gravelly at start-up and then again at higher revs, and it also doesn’t enjoy being revved a lot, making you want to shift up well before the redline. However, both these aspects are slightly improved from the old car. The Crysta settles into a smooth and relatively silent hum at low to medium revs, and though you’ll still want to shift up early, you get more out of each gear now. The rest is all positive. For one, there’s more power – 150hp is a significant jump in power over the old 102hp, and at 13.1sec, the Crysta is a full 4.4sec faster from 0-100kph than the previous car! It even feels much stronger when you’re overtaking, which is essential when you’re out on the highway with a fully loaded-up car; this is helped by its solid 343Nm of pulling power that’s made as low as 1,400rpm. The old Innova was geared very short, so cruising in fifth on the highway was a noisy affair and the engine sounded strained. The newer car has a much broader torque spread and relatively taller gearing, so it feels a lot more comfortable loping along at high speeds, although we feel a sixth ratio would have made it more effortless still. So it’s a great highway cruiser, but if you find yourself in traffic, you will notice the clutch pedal is on the heavy side and that the short gear lever needs a little more effort. It’s also got three drive modes – Eco, Normal and Power. Eco is best for when you’re in town and want to stretch every last litre of diesel, while Power yields the quickest responses to accelerator inputs. But Normal mode is the best for everyday driving, delivering a good mix of power and efficiency.

What really tells you that the Innova is now a seriously premium car is the availability of an automatic gearbox. The six-speed unit also comes with a larger, even more powerful diesel engine – 2.8 litres with 174hp at 3,400rpm and 360Nm at 1,200-3,400rpm. This car is properly quick, being able to cross 100kph in just 11.5sec, and this is despite the fact it weighs almost 1.9 tonnes! The automatic gear shifts themselves are smooth, but we feel the system is too eager to change gears sometimes, even when not necessary. And while there are no paddle shifters for manual gear control, you can change gears manually with the gear lever itself.

Toyota Innova Crysta Driving

The good news just keeps coming, as the other great strength of the Innova – its comfortable and all-conquering ride – has not been tampered with either. At just about any and all speeds, the big MPV just punishes bumps and potholes into submission. The suspension is tuned a little on the soft side and absorbs all sorts of road irregularities well, and if there is a slight jittery feeling, it’s more down to the relatively large 17-inch wheels than the suspension. In a straight line on the highway, the Innova Crysta stays superbly flat and composed, keeping cabin occupants comfortable throughout. The only disappointment is the steering. Of course, one cannot expect sportscar precision in an MPV, but the Crysta’s wheel feels too heavy at low speeds and requires too many turns, lock to lock, to make a U-turn. Conversely, at higher speeds, it starts to feel loose and inconsistent, and this can get a little disconcerting. You’ll also feel a bit of steering shock through the wheel as you drive over sharper bumps. And, expectedly, there’s loads of body roll around corners, and combined with the slow, heavy and mushy steering, this is really not a car you want to drive enthusiastically. View offers on Toyota Cars from Toyota dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

Toyota Innova Crysta Safety

Safety features are generous too. All passengers get three-point seatbelts and while three airbags, anti-lock brakes (ABS) with electronic brake-force distribution (EBD) and brake assist (BA) come as standard, higher variants get seven airbags, vehicle stability control (VSC) and hill-start assist too.

Toyota Innova Crysta Price

Toyota Innova Crysta Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 13,91,737/- (Innova Crysta 2.4 G MT 7 Seater) to 22,65,258/- (Innova Crysta 2.8 ZX AT 7 Seater Touring Sport). Get best offers for Toyota Innova Crysta from Toyota Dealers in India

Toyota Innova Crysta Verdict

Without a doubt the the Innova Crysta is a huge jump over the old car in most areas. The build quality both inside and out is good; cabin ambiance has taken a big jump forward; it is much more comfortable and spacious than before; it’s loaded with features; and it gets potent motors which makes it one of the fastest MPVs, and the comfortable ride makes it a great long distance car. It does have its downsides. In pursuit of making the suspension more cushy, the new Innova doesn’t feel as nimble as before and interior quality could have been better as the new car now crosses the Rs 20 lakh mark. So is the Innova Crysta worth the extra moolah? Well the answer is mostly yes. It gets lots of features, gets at least three airbags and ABS as standard and then there is the legendary Toyota reliability. The new Innova Crysta radiates the feel good-factor thanks to its peace of mind ownership and now with the improved overall package there are even less excuses not to buy the Innova.

Hyundai Elite i20 Facelift Review & Test Drive

Hyundai Elite i20 Overview

Hyundai has updated their premium hatchback offering the i20 for the Indian market. There is no doubt that the Elite i20 hatchback attracted a lot of attention when it was launched but the sales figures dipped south when Maruti introduced the Baleno in India because it offered the better package at that price point. But Hyundai is unwilling to leave the competition yet and thus decided to updated their current premium hatchback. Hyundai Elite i20 On road price starts from 5,27,767/-. Check for price details of Hyundai Elite i20 in CarzPrice.

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Although the changes are subtle both inside and outside the additional equipment now added to the hatchback surely has made the current hatchback a better value for money product for certain. So without any further due let’s get straight to the point, shall we?

Hyundai Elite i20 Style

The Hyundai Elite i20 2017 has been one of the best looking hatchbacks in the country. Its looks have been its USP and attracted many buyers. The Fluidic Design 2.0 in the Hyundai Elite i20 2017 makes it look fresh and premium in styling. Car buyers have picked up the Elite i20 mainly due to its styling. The aggressive look with the sleek front grille and the hexagonal lower grille are unique. The pulled back headlamps sleek and thicker towards the side. They extend upto the fenders. The large fog lamps are glamorous. From the side too the Hyundai Elite i20 2017 looks premium, specially with the blacked out door pillars. The alloy wheels are smart and contribute to the overall styling.

The Hyundai Elite i20 2017 tail lamps are another talking point. It seems inspired from the Alfa Romeo Giuletta but looks very handsome. The Hyundai Elite i20 2017 is a car design that mostly nobody will dislike . Its quite a masterpiece that doesn’t just do the job. The Hyundai Elite i20 2017 also gets projector headlamps and DRLs, which weren’t there on our test car. This update came in a bit later after Maruti Baleno was launched. The Dual Tone variant offers black roof on the Red and White colour options.

Hyundai Elite i20 Cabin

As for the cabin, there’s really little to complain about. Overall quality is impressive (though still a notch down on the VW Polo), detailing is impressive (the column stalks feel very rich) and the layered dashboard looks suitably upmarket. If there’s a negative it’s that the screen for the audio system is a tad too small. Some might also find the knobs for the music system small and fiddly, but drivers do get their own set of controls on the well-finished, three-spoke steering wheel. Drivers will also like the good visibility and ability to adjust the steering for rake and reach. The supportive seats and general feeling of space enhance the front seat experience further. Access to the rear seat is nice thanks to the wide door aperture, and once inside you’ll be quite amazed by the space on offer. Legroom and headroom are particularly good and there is sufficient width to seat three. The rear seat also scores well for good back and leg support. However, the backrest is a bit too reclined and the bolstering on its outer edges hurts comfort when seated three abreast. Shorter occupants may also find the windows a little too high for their liking. If there’s a consolation, rear seat occupants do get a dedicated air-con vent in all but the base version of the i20.

And that brings us to features. The top-spec Asta trim we’ve featured comes with lots of equipment as standard. The list includes automatic headlamps, push button start, automatic climate control, an audio player with 1 GB of onboard music storage, Bluetooth telephone function and a reverse camera. Even the mid-spec Sportz trim comes well loaded, but frustratingly essentials such as a rear wash/wipe and a passenger-side airbag are only offered on the top-spec car.

Hyundai Elite i20 Engine

The new i20 gets the same petrol and diesel powertrain configurations as before though minor tweaks for efficiency and better load management have been employed. I have driven the 1.4-litre 16-valve 4-cylinder CRDI. You get 90PS at 4,000rpm with a superb 222Nm of max torque between 1,500 – 2,750rpm from this engine. Max engine rpm cuts off at 4,750rpm. The power and torque ratings in the new i20 diesel are adequate for every situation though I do feel Hyundai should have tuned it for better bottom end characteristics. The turbocharger kicks in at 1,400rpm and the boost improves acceleration past that point however, under that mark it feels a bit sluggish. Dense traffic as a result will see you shifting through first and second gears constantly, moreover since it comes coupled to a 6-speed manual transmission which is a fuel efficiency enhancer. Hyundai claims an ARAI certified fuel efficiency of 22kmpl for the diesel, with 19kmpl for the petrol. Interestingly the petrol engine gets a 5-speed manual. There is no automatic at the time of launch but expect one in the future.

The new i20 gets the same petrol and diesel power train configurations as before The new i20 gets the same petrol and diesel powertrain configurations as beforeThe diesel engine then, as I mentioned, has got a strong mid-range and you only feel the punch once the turbo kicks in. Acceleration after that is brisk and makes this an effortless highway cruiser. Though having said that it’s no slouch in city traffic either, the responses are sharp and you can get going pretty quickly when the need arises to get past slower moving traffic in urban areas. The diesel is also superbly refined and thanks to immense sound deadening, there is barely any engine clatter audible inside the cabin.The highlight of the Elite i20’s diesel drivetrain is the slick shift leverThe highlight of the Elite i20’s diesel drivetrain is the slick shift lever

The highlight of this drivetrain though is the slick shift lever which has short precise throws. I do like the way you can just give it a light nudge to slot into the required gear. Reverse gear on this can be found in the same place as first gear but engaging it requires you to raise the lever and then slot it into reverse. It’s a safer move unlike what you get in the VW Polo.

Hyundai Elite i20 Driving

The ride quality is good for most urban and highway conditions. The MacPherson setup at the front with a torsion beam axle and coil springs at the rear are adequate dampers for good and bad roads. Large potholes can be a bit unsettling, resulting in sharp thuds but overall the ride quality is comfortable.On the handling front, I do feel that the new i20 is seriously underpowered for the kind of control it exhibits. It’s tightly controlled in corners and while there is some body roll, it’s not unsettling nor does it at any point make you feel unsafe. I did find the steering a bit elasticky and it’s not as impressive as in the Grand i10 but it’s light enough for urban commutes with enough weight for when you take it out of the city. The assistance fortunately is not excessive and like in the Verna or the previous i20, you do not need to be extra cautious when taking the steering wheel off centre.Compared to the diesel variant, the petrol i20?s steering setup feels lighter, thanks to the lesser weight of the petrol engine. But that also makes the steering feel more lifeless. The engine however, feels livelier than its diesel counterpart. Being a naturally aspirated mill, it has a more linear power delivery with no flat spots to complain about. The engine is rev happy and gets the car rolling from as low as 1,200 rpm. Needless to say, it is also quicker and more refined than its diesel sibling.

Hyundai Elite i20 Safety

Hyundai has incorporated a decent braking system in the hatch, which consists of disc brakes on the front and drum brakes on the rear. It is supported immensely well by the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS), but that is limited to the top three variants. Earlier, Hyundai i20 used to be the only hatchback under Rs. 10 lakh that offered as many as half a dozen airbags and was impeccably safe. But, now the scenario has reversed as even the top-end trim has only 2 airbags. The base and mid variants don’t feature a single airbag, while the Sportz trim comprises of only driver’s airbag. The parking assist feature with reverse parking sensors and rear camera with ECM display comes handy during parking the hatch. There are front fog lamps to improve visibility in inclement weather conditions.But, again, both the aforesaid features are with Sportz and Asta trims. Additionally, the top-end trim also features seat belt pretensioners for the driver and front passenger, automatic headlamps, impact-sensing auto door unlock and clutch lock. On the security front, it has immobilizer, smart keyless entry, and central locking (door and tailgate) to endure any event of burglary or thievery. It can be propounded nonchalantly that the current gen Elite i20 stands nowhere close to its predecessor in terms of safety features. The company has disappointed thoroughly in the safety and security aspect. View offers on Hyundai Cars from Hyundai dealers in Hyderabad at Autozhop

Hyundai Elite i20 Cost

Hyundai Elite I20 Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 5,27,767/- (Elite i20 1.2 Era Petrol) to 9,09,277/- (Elite i20 1.4 Asta Option Diesel). Get best offers for Hyundai Elite I20 from Hyundai Dealers in India

Hyundai Elite i20 Verdict

Hyundai definitely have a finger on the pulse of the Indian buyer, they very effectively know just what it is the market demands and are responding with highly emotional products. The only emotions they aren’t touching are the ones that enthusiasts bear, so if you are looking for a hot hatch and the i20 definitely looks the part, this is not the car for you.If you want a smooth effortless and feature rich product then the i20 ticks all the right boxes. I am impressed but only so much, I want the European spec with more power and better dynamics but that’s me. For the general populace, this is a superb car though I do feel Hyundai should have priced the higher variants a bit more competitively. They would have taken a hit but would have gotten an immensely stronger customer base. Superbly finished, good looking with a great drivetrain and refinement, a list of features to put the competition to shame, the i20 can go on to achieve great things for Hyundai. It’s definitely an evolutionary product and one that will either take the competition back to the drawing board or offering massive discounts. Either way, it’s something that will earn you your neighbour’s envy for a long time to come!

Hyundai Verna Performance & Price

Hyundai Verna Overview

Hyundai Verna has always been a prominent player in the mid-sized sedan segment in the Indian market. It has churned decent moolah for Hyundai in this highly competitive segment, which comprises of heavyweights such as Maruti Ciaz, Honda City, Volkswagen Vento and others. The sales of the Verna sedan dipped concerningly over the past few months as the design was outdated and it missed out on some tempting features as compared to its arch rivals Honda City and Maruti Ciaz, both of whom received a facelifted version with fresh styling and modern features. Therefore, the South-Korean automaker has introduced the next-gen Verna sedan with new styling and sophisticated features to regain the lost ground. The new sedan comes in both petrol and diesel fuel trims with manual as well as automatic transmission. It has been offered in four trim levels: E, EX, SX, and SX (O). The 2017 Hyundai Verna is based on a new architecture, while flaunting a new design and boasting of several first-in-segment features. Hyundai Verna On road price starts from 7,98,266/-. Check for price details of Verna in CarzPrice.

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Hyundai Verna Style

The new Verna is bigger as well as more spacious than its predecessor and also gets a slightly lengthier wheelbase which automatically translates into more interior space. The new car also underpins a new reworked Hyundai i20 platform.

Now let’s talk about the styling, shall we? The old Verna was always one attractive looking sedan, and thus Hyundai decided not to mess too much wi9th the overall silhouette of the car and thus decided to make minimal changes to keep things fresh on the new car. As a result of all that the new generation Verna gets a redesigned headlamps and grille towards the front, the new ‘C’ shaped LED Daytime running lamps has also are integrated into the new headlight unit. The headlight assembly, in particular, gets projector units. The front profile now is dominated by a large cascading Hyundai grille. The front profile also gets new fog lamp cluster which is surrounded by a chrome embellishment. There are not many changes made to the side profile though however, the new sedan does feature a new set of alloy wheels for the top end trim. The swooping roofline towards the rear makes things more interesting. Talking about the rear profile, in particular, it gets this newly designed wrap around tail lamps which look quite similar to the ones found in the new facelift Xcent sedan only slightly bigger. The integrated boot spoiler too helps in adding a sporty appeal to the vehicle.

Hyundai Verna Space

The cabin layout isn’t very different from its stablemates, but that isn’t a bad thing. Interiors are well-appointed and the placement of controls is good. The new steering controls add to the upmarket feel while offering better usability. The quality of plastics is as good as it gets and plastics are nice to the touch with a smooth feel. The 7-inch touchscreen offers a good resolution but a slightly crisper resolution would have been more welcome, particularly for the navigation. The infotainment system offers Apple CarPlay, Android Auto and MirrorLink connectivity.

The ventilated seats deserve a mention as their cooling effect is a boon, and the seats are nicely cushioned and offer good bolstering. The rear bench is comfortable but leg and kneeroom aren’t as generous as some of the competition. The rear seat is a nice place to be in though with its plushness as the height of the arm rest is perfect and the rear air-conditioning vents ensure drafts of cold air reach you well. There’s an additional USB port for rear occupants, a thoughtful addition for the chaueffer driven lot. Storage spaces are abundant with several useful cubby holes, cup holders, a front central arm rest with storage and one-litre bottle holders in all doors.

Boot volume may not be best in class but there’s good amounts of space and I don’t think the average buyer will complain. Another highlight is the remote opening function for the boot, like the Elantra and Tucson – you simply need to stand behind the car for three seconds with the key in your pocket for it to open – which helps a lot when your hands are full.

Hyundai Verna Engine

Hyundai’s Verna will be offered with two engines, not four. The 1.4-litre engines have been shelved altogether. The 1.6-litre petrol and diesel engines have been carried over, but not without tweaks. Though power figures are identical at 123PS (petrol) and 128PS (diesel), Hyundai says that the torque is a lot more accessible. For instance, at 1250rpm you’d have 245Nm of torque on tap, compared to 176Nm in the outgoing Verna 4S diesel. Similar case with the petrol, where it makes a full 7Nm more at 1500rpm compared to the outgoing car that developed 122Nm. There’s a 6-speed manual like before, but, the 4-speed automatic transmission has been ditched in favour of a 6-speed automatic, presumably borrowed from the Creta. We could only sample the diesel avatar of the Verna, but had a go with both the transmissions. Clutch in, thumb the start-stop button, and the engine comes to life with a faint clatter. The engine feels smooth and refined as you start driving. The highlight here is the drivability of the motor, courtesy the torque. You can lug it at 30kmph in third. Step on it, and expect it to build speed cleanly. Much like the little Xcent, power delivery remains linear, save for a small spike in power at around 1700rpm. The diesel should make for a good city car as the clutch is light (albeit springy), and the gearshifts are quick n’ slick.

If you don’t want that hassle altogether, the new automatic gearbox will save the day. It shifts through the gears quickly and just gets the job done. Don’t expect it to be a sporty gearbox that will give you split-second shifts. Think of it rather as convenience and it seems just right for the job. There’s a manual mode too, but it didn’t seem all that engaging to use. It’s best left to its own, really. What’s appreciable, is the fact that the Verna is no longer a skittish handler. Around the skidpad, it remained composed as we chucked it about. Yes, there’s a bit of body roll but it’s predictable. And, we’d say the same thing about the steering as well. It is light, sure – but not dead. It does a good job of telling you what the front wheels are up to. Impressive! We can’t comment on the ride just as yet, but Hyundai tells us the new suspension has been engineered to be more forgiving, more pliant and quieter. It should have no qualms munching highway miles, but we’ll reserve our word on it till we get enough time with the car.

Hyundai Verna driving

Dynamics on the 2018 Hyundai Verna are leagues ahead of the older car. The steering is so much better now. It feels direct but still lacks feedback. At low speeds, it is light enough while it weighs up slightly on the highways. However, it still feels dead and lacks a proper connect. The vehicle remains stable on straights as well as twisty roads alike but doesn’t feel as eager or sure-footed as cars like the Volkswagen Vento and Skoda Rapid. The Verna is a very good cruiser but I wouldn’t call it a fun-to-drive car.

The suspension has been set-up nicely and it gets a mildly stiff setting. It absorbs bumps and potholes well and the car’s body remains fairly composed all the time. If you hit sharp undulations, the suspension does have a tendency to thud. Ground clearance isn’t much of an issue while braking performance is brilliant with the pedal having good bite and generating much better feedback too. The Verna comes with Hankook tyres and grip is satisfactory for regular usage. While the older car used to feel like a boat, this one is completely different.

Hyundai Verna Safety

Here’s where things get really interesting. The Verna gets what’s among our favourite in-cabin features – ventilated seats! It’s the only car in its segment to get it; the next being its elder sibling – the Hyundai Elantra. More hand-me-downs from the bigger Hyundai sedan comes in the form of an electric sunroof, and hands-free boot release that pops open the trunk if you wave your foot underneath the rear bumper. The Verna continues to feature leather upholstery, and the front seats score high in terms of cushioning and comfort. The rear is a compromise in comparison – the legroom isn’t generous and anyone over six feet will be a bit too close to the roof. Seating three, although possible, will be a squeeze. That said, rear occupants are treated to their own air-conditioning vents, a central armrest and a single USB socket to juice up the phone.As far as safety is concerned, the top-spec variant we drove around, featured six airbags. We’re expecting dual airbags and ABS to be standard across the range, as is the case with the refreshed Honda City.

Hyundai Verna Cost

Hyundai Verna Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 7,98,266/- (Verna 1.6 VTVT E) to 12,86,192/- (Verna 1.6 CRDI SX Plus AT). Get best offers for Hyundai Verna from Hyundai Dealers in India.

Hyundai Verna Verdict

To put it simply, the Verna’s package has only become stronger. The new design is mature and likeable, and like most Hyundais – it is loaded to the gills as well. Our short spin has us impressed with the drivability of the diesel, and the dynamics when you hustle it. Yes, the interior could’ve looked a lot less simpler and some more room at the back would’ve made it the perfect package. But, that doesn’t take away from the fact that Verna will catapult right to the top of the consideration list for the self-driven lot. It isn’t going to be easy, but Hyundai does look well-prepped to slug it out with the updated Honda City and the to-be updated Maruti Ciaz.

Honda City Facelift Review & Test Drive

Honda City Overview

The new headlights with DRL, LED taillights, foldable ORVMs with turn blinker, sunroof, shark-fin antenna, new alloy wheels and several other styling elements reflect the premium class of the car. With a long wheelbase, Honda City offers great cabin space for the driver and passengers. The sedan comes integrated with eight-speaker stereo system with support for Aux-in and Bluetooth support. The 17.7 cm screen integrates visual Navigation system along with park assist system that displays objects while reversing. A climate control unit for passengers helps keep cabin temperature in check. There are power outlets in the front and rear for gadgets. An instrument cluster with the ‘Econ’ setting, a start-stop button, and several other advanced features find place in the City. Honda City price range in India is between 8,76,924/- to 14,08,634/-, check for detail pricing of Honda City in Carzprice

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Honda City Style

The Honda City has always had the design which looks ahead of its time. Except for the dolphin model, every generation of the City has impressed everyone with its futuristic design appeal.Sleek tail lamps along with the long stretched radiator grille make the front design of the Honda City very sporty. The radiator grille has been generously treated with chrome but very tastefully and does not look tacky at all. The front bonnet flows towards the nose of the front fascia. On the front bumpers is the contrast black air intake vent which gels well with the overall design.

The City is based on the Arrow shot form design which is seen on the raised shoulder line from the headlights to the rear profile. In the mid life facelift the ground clearance of the City has been improved and is now at 165mm which is a welcome change over the earlier offering as the lower section used to get scraped while crossing speed breakers especially when the car was filled with occupants.

The 10 spoke alloy wheel look very sporty and so does the slender roofline. The smart and crisp design of the City make it look very athletic compared to its competition.On the rear profile, the rear boot lip gets all the major attention as it is short and sporty. The tail lamp design is smart and the line descends from the boot through the rail lamp to the lower half of the rear profile which make it look very dynamic.Honda City looks right when seen from any angle as it does not have any artificial lines which flow out of proportion but instead a smart profile throughout the exterior profile of the car.

Honda City Cabin

The interiors are There has a few add-ons though. The plastic quality feels better now and is put together well. A larger touchscreen infotainment system dominated the centre part of the dash. and this has better resolution too. The system has HDMI input and MirrorLink as well. There is reverse camera and even six airbags on offer on the ZX variant.

There is more than sufficient space in the 2017 City. The front row seats are comfortable and spacious. There is ample of head room and leg room. The seats have good comfort and are good enough even for long distance travel. The rear seats are also spacious and have good amount of comfort too. The arm rest falls a bit too low but other than that there is no other issue. The boot space is 510 litres, which is sufficient for a family of four.

Honda City Engine

The City continues to be powered by the same set of petrol and diesel engines. The 1.5 litre i-DTEC engine that makes 100hp and 200Nm delivers great low-end performance and is smooth and linear in a very un-diesel-like way, but rev it hard and it becomes rather noisy. Honda claims to have added more insulation for lowering the NVH levels in the diesel, and, though it is a marked improvement, there’s only so much that could be done to curb what is inherently a noisy engine. Ambient sounds have gone down a bit, but the diesel engine rattle is still an issue.The petrol option is of course the tried and tested naturally-aspirated 1.5 i-VTEC engine developing 119hp and 145Nm. The motor is still a riot for enthusiasts, revving out eagerly to its red line and making a lot of its power at the top end. It’s quite usable at the bottom end too and, as the revs climb, it can get a bit vocal.

Gearbox options remain the same as well with a six-speed manual for the diesel and a choice between five-speed manual or seven-step CVT automatic for the petrol. With India’s crowded roads and newfound fondness for automatics, it’s sad that the City doesn’t offer such an option on the diesel, but that’s just something that will perhaps have to wait for the next generation.With no mechanical changes to the suspension either, the ride remains largely the same, which is to say agreeable by class standards, but not the class best. There’s still a fair bit of roll around corners and the ride quality can get a bit choppy at times. The top ZX variants do get new 16-inch alloys and wider tyres, and thankfully they don’t seem to have hurt the ride quality at all. As for the handling, we didn’t get much of a chance to test it on Delhi’s wide, smooth and straight roads, so the verdict is still out on that one.

Honda City Driving

The sixth generation City was an able handler and so is this one. The electric power steering weighs up beautifully as you speed up although, feedback is a little lacking. What stays as it is and impressive at that is the ride quality. I have had the opportunity to drive all the variants of the City that have been launched in India and I can cross my heart and say that all of them had a measured ride quality. Neither bone-jarringly stiff nor overtly soft. Take it around a corner with gusto and the car responds positively. There is decent enough grip from the Bridgestone Ecopia tyres which will keep you entertained.

Honda City Safety

Honda has upped their game in terms of safety for the new City. The car now comes with dual front airbags, ABS, EBD and ISOFIX seats as standard across all the trims. On the range topping ZX trim you now get six airbags! Honda’s after sales is well known in India and the H badge is known for its reliability. The Japanese automaker has expanded its network from 295 dealers to 332 in this fiscal year. The City is heavily localised and the cost of maintenance is easy on the pocket. It even offers good resale value.

Honda City Cost

Honda City Ex-Showroom Price in India ranges from 8,76,924/- (City S MT Petrol) to 14,08,634/- (City Zx MT Diesel Anniversary Edition). Get best offers for Honda City from Honda Dealers in India

Honda City Verdict

The Honda City was coming under a lot of pressure from the Maruti Ciaz, which has managed to outsell it for quite a while now. So with the facelift instead of making the City more affordable, Honda have gone even more premium and have added lots of features especially in the top ZX variant. Prices for the updated City start at Rs 8.50lakh and go all the way up to Rs 13.57lakh for the top ZX diesel variant. This makes it way more expensive than the Ciaz. But as a product there is lot going for the City. The cabin is well thought out, and its combination of humongous space and well-designed seats make it one of the most comfortable sedans in the segment. Then there is the equipment list, which can rival cars from the segment above and the fact that you get more safety equipment than before, just adds to the package. Surely the updated Honda City won’t appeal as VFM proposition, but as a package it is still a car you can’t go wrong with.