Cartrade Comparison Test
The Hyundai Verna is perhaps the primary reason for all the manufacturers putting extreme stress on a modern design. It looks very sporty for its class and the Fluidic Design Sculpture has done an amazing job. Though, we prefer the first gen Fluidic Verna to this as this has got a bit edgy on the overall profile. The last update on the Fluidic Verna was seen as a facelift which tightened its corners and also made the overall profile look smarter than before. Essentially, the headlight cluster was changed along with a revamped radiator grille which got a brand new twin slat design. The front bumpers got new contours and the headlights received a pulled back treatment to make it look better as well as offer brighter illumination. It is only toe front profile that received a major change as the side profile was left untouched. The rear taillight was updated too with an LED like effect and so were the rear reflectors.
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz
For the first time in the brand’s history, Maruti Suzuki attempted making an elegant and upmarket sedan and to a great extent, they succeeded too. The front of the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz has a wider stance with larger headlights. The intricate detailing inside the headlight makes it look interesting with projectors as well as multi angle reflectors embedded in it. The same feel is carried to the side wherein it gets a shoulder line that dominates the silhouette. Maruti Suzuki offers 16-inch wheels with multi spoke alloys giving it an equally premium side profile as the front. Also, making the glass area on the side looked stretched evenly; the pillars have been deliberately blackened. To the rear, one would find large well placed tail lights again for that necessary elegance and poise. The bumper on the rear with its scooped out sections reminds of the Kizashi.
Hyundai has led the game in terms of features and options and the Verna too endorses the same but the only aspect where the Verna loses its momentum is space and thus is clearly not the one for those looking for grand space in a mid-size sedan. The seats in the Verna are comfortable for short as well as long commutes since Hyundai has updated the padding and cushioning of them. Everything about the seats is fantastic except for the under thigh support which lacks the necessary comfort. Taller passengers will enjoy the space inside the front zone in the Verna as the driver’s seat also gets height adjustment.
The Hyundai Verna offers a plethora of features and options which includes a 1 GB on board memory for storing unimaginable number of songs. In addition, it gets automatic headlights along with rain sensing wipers and push Start/Stop button. To aid driving in tight spots, it also offers rear view camera with park assist.
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz
Happily, the interiors of the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz are equally expressive as the premium exteriors. The Ciaz doesn’t only offer premium line of features and layout but also is as grand in space making it one of the most spacious kinds in its segment. It makes use of rich quality of veneers, fabrics and textures to make it look distinct from its overall portfolio of models. To make the cabin feel more airy, it gets bright coloured leather seats done in colours of creamish beige. The most impressive aspect in the Ciaz has to be its rear passenger space which is grander to the extreme. Taller passengers will be completely floored with this as there is more than sufficient knee room and leg room in this area. It also gets rear passenger AC vents to make sure it doesn’t take too long for the rear passengers to get cooler air.
Present day cars are all about features and options and Maruti Suzuki couldn’t be left behind as they have equipped the Ciaz with some of the best in class features which has also been aped by some of its rivals now. For ease of operation and comfort, there are steering mounted controls, automatic climate control, touchscreen infotainment system with navigation and rear park assist and electrically adjustable exterior mirrors. In addition, the Ciaz also offers keyless entry and a retractable rear windscreen blind.
Hyundai Verna also leads the segment when it comes to offering multiple engine and transmission options. There are precisely two petrol and two diesel engines with an optional choice of automatic transmission in both fuel types. The 1.4-litre Gamma VTVT petrol engine makes 105 bhp of power at 6300 rpm and 138 Nm of torque at 5000 rpm. The higher displacement 1.6-litre Gamma motor delivers a higher output of 122 bhp at 6300 rpm and 158 Nm of torque at 4200 rpm. Both these engines are offered with a 5-Speed manual transmission.
The diesel variants make use of a 1.4-litre U2 CRDi motor that makes 88bhp at 4000 rpm and 224 Nm of torque at 1750 to 2750 rpm. The more powerful 1.6-litre CRDi diesel motor generates 126 bhp at 4000 rpm and 265 Nm between 1900 to 2750 rpm. Both these versions make use of a six-speed manual transmission. The petrol 4-speed automatic variant uses a 1591cc motor that makes 122 bhp at 6300 rpm and 158 Nm at 4200 rpm. The diesel four-speed automatic variant uses a 1582cc motor that churns out 126 bhp at 4000 rpm and 265 Nm at between 1900 to 2750 rpm.
The larger petrol motor, with its virtue of producing greater numbers, is suited for both highways and city traffic conditions. Though, the motor offers a lot, it still does not match up to the iVTEC which comes in the Honda City. The motor has been greatly refined to make sure there is no unnecessary grunt experienced while the motor revs at higher speeds. The NVH levels too have been worked on and no ambience noise seeps inside the cabin making it uncomfortable for the occupants inside. The CRDi motor doing duty on the diesel Verna has gone through a similar improvement with an improved low range response and impressive NVH levels.
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz is offered in both petrol as well as diesel variants. The petrol variants make use of a 1373cc motor that produces 90bhp at 6000 rpm and 130 Nm of torque at 4000 rpm. This engine is offered with a 5-speed manual and well as 4-speed automatic transmission units. As officially claimed, this motor delivers 20.73 kmpl for the manual transmission and 19.12 km/l by the automatic transmission model. The more popular diesel powertrain utilizes a 1248cc motor that churns out 86 bhp of power at 4000 rpm and makes a meaty torque of 200 Nm at 1750 rpm. This motor makes use of a 5-speed manual transmission. This motor also happens to be most efficient in its class at 28.09 km/l, thanks to its Smart Hybrid Technology which uses an Integrated Starter Generator.
The diesel motor is the same as seen on many popular cars in India. The NVH levels are not very impressive considering the fact that the diesel clatter tends to enter the cabin at higher revs. Even though, the motor has been properly tuned to make sure it hauls a sedan of these dimensions, there is evident turbo lag at initial engine speeds. This makes it uncomfortable in city driving conditions. To aid this, the shift quality has been changed but still lacks the finesse where its rivals score more. The petrol unit however is more suitable for such short commutes as it is rightly tuned for an immediate response. The power delivery is very linear making the motor revv with a smooth response. However, this engine is not much of a please on highways as it needs to be constantly revved.
Ride and Handling:
The Hyundai Verna offers a great deal of convenience and efficiency and this applies to both petrol and diesel motors. With a lighter steering wheel and an impressive lower rpm grunt, this one feels good to drive in city where easy manoeuvrability plays a vital role. Also, aiding this feeling is its compact dimensions compared to that of Maruti Suzuki Ciaz. In the new Hyundai Verna, the suspension setup has been aptly updated to improve the much criticized ride quality.
This has paid great dividends while driving over speed breakers where the wheels tended to bottom out but now with the larger travel of suspension, nothing of that sort happens. At high speeds, the confidence level is still not the best in the segment and a lot of that is felt due to the vague steering inputs, However, the ride quality has definitely improved from the previous version as this one feels more stable and planted on highways.
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz
Since the petrol Ciaz is lighter than the diesel variant, it offers a more agile ride. This comes as a major boon while handling city traffic and to support the same the smooth petrol motor revs confidently at the lower range. The light steering wheel helps easy manoeuvrability of the car inside the city. While the benefits and merits are totally felt inside the city, on highways it is almost a curse since the vague steering input is the last thing you wish for.
The suspension setup too doesn’t really work in tandem as the cushy springs do not feel reliable on high speeds. The diesel too doesn’t fit the bill of being a joy to drive. It lacks the joy and pleasure of its European rivals but is definitely better than the Hyundai Verna and Honda City. The only area where it feels at home are the highways where the motor gets into its real spirits.
Value for Money:
If there is anything that speaks volumes about the Hyundai Verna, it has to be the way it looks and till date not many cars look as zesty in design as the Verna. This is then followed by a long list of exhaustive features, typical Hyundai trait, and here too Hyundai leads the game. It did receive competition from Honda City and Maruti Suzuki Ciaz but still has managed to hold its ground.
The prices of Hyundai Verna range from Rs 8.18 lakhs to Rs 10.67 lakhs for petrol variants while the same is from Rs 9.51 lakhs to Rs 12.88 lakhs for the diesel variants. All these prices are ex-showroom Mumbai.
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz
The Ciaz has been positioned as a premium sedan and the efforts and detailing gone into making and promoting it speaks loudly of the company’s intention to not slot this near to its other budget offerings. The petrol Maruti Suzuki Ciaz is priced at Rs 7.79 lakhs for VXi MT and it goes all the way upto Rs 9.68 lakhs. The automatic variants are priced between Rs 9.48 lakhs to Rs 9.7 lakhs. The Smart diesel hybrid variants are priced between Rs 8.76 lakhs to Rs 10.93 laks. All these prices are ex-showroom Mumbai.
Winner: In terms of comfort, the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz is way more comfortable since it is the longest and the widest in its class but the Verna scores more with ease of driving and manoeuvrability. But it is the Ciaz that wins amongst the two.