A by-word for quality and reliability, Honda Cars India is all set to kick-off the new year with a brand new diesel sedan car for fuel economy-crazy Indians. As the crowds turn to diesel cars, Honda hopes to capitalize on the opportunity. Of course, critics wouldn’t waste a second to point out that the Japanese lost a fair bit of sales in the early part of 2012. That said, this is all set to change as Honda launches the very first diesel car in India. The Honda Amaze will spearhead their campaign followed by other models like the Jazz and City which will also receive the diesel package. So, even as Honda prepares to launch the new car, we take a look at other cars that will rival the upcoming Honda Amaze.
Maruti Suzuki sure is the country’s biggest automaker, but even the #1 car maker is set to feel the heat. The Dzire has held on to its sales with the recent upgrade wherein the car dropped it rather fugly boot for a much decent and proportionate compact sedan look. As far as looks are concerned, the Honda Amaze would definitely win the hearts of the judges when pitted against the Dzire in a beauty contest, but what about the engine?
The Amaze uses a highly refined 1.5 litre i-DTEC motor and with an overall length under-4 meters expect the price to be bang-on target with Maruti Suzuki’s corresponding contender- the Dzire. The Dzire comes in both petrol and diesel guise and the Amaze won’t be any different. The Amaze will share the petrol engine that does the job in the Brio hatchback which has already proven to be one heck of a masterpiece. The petrol engine in the Brio does almost 17 km per litre on a highway under real-world conditions where there is traffic, heavy vehicles and broken roads. The 1.2 litre i-VTEC engine is also characterized by its smooth power delivery and ample grunt across the rev band to keep the driver entertained.
The Amaze may be the underdog in this battle, however it beats the Dzire when it comes to build quality, refinement, snob value, etc.
Now let’s check how the Toyota Etios stacks up against upcoming Honda Amaze. Toyota launched the Etios as an entry-level sedan for the masses. Both the Etios and Liva hatchback opened up the brand for more customers for whom the Corolla and the Innova was a bit too out of budget. Again, the Etios buyer gets to choose between petrol and diesel engines. The 1.4 litre diesel that powers the Etios puts out 68 PS of peak power along with 170 Nm of torque.
Expect the Amaze to give a close fight to the Etios when it comes to the diesel engine. Also, this would be a battle to watch out for as the two Japanese brands lock horns. The Etios’ interior is a bit of a let-down though. The interior feels like it has been made to a price. That said, Toyota did update the trim on the new model with the addition of a beige colour scheme. To be fair on the Etios, the interior is rather quirky than outright luxurious. It will be a tough choice to make when it comes to choosing between the Honda Amaze and the Toyota Etios. It will ultimately boil down to brand perception and intricacies like cost of ownership and the offers prevailing at the time of launch.
The Etios is built to a price unlike the Amaze which will be within 4 meters allowing it to be priced low without compromising on quality. Still, for those who prefer a larger sedan the Etios would be a wise choice.
You won’t have to dive into the history books to learn more about the Mahindra Verito. The car was initially conceived by Renault as the Logan. This is the same car that gained popularity in parts of Eastern Europe. For a while, Mahindra did hold on to Renault’s hand until the time both split and decided to go their separate ways. Coming to the new Verito, Mahindra tweaked the exterior as well as the interior of the car in a bid to elevate the Verito’s image from being your everyday cab to a family sedan.
They did succeed at that as the new Verito looks like one impressive kit. Still, the car was 4.2 meters in length which meant it was not eligible for tax benefits. This also meant that Mahindra couldn’t price it as low as they’d wished. Hence, Mahindra will bring a compact sedan based on the Verito in the coming months. This is the car which will eventually pave the way for a low price tag thanks to its trimmed length.
Mahindra will be coming with the Verito 'CS' or compact sedan soon which will pit it directly against the Amaze. In fact, Mahindra might be able to price it ever so competitively. After all, it's Mahindra who're known for their value-for-money products.