The year 2020 has kicked off with a slew of car launches in India. Hyundai has started the New Year with its first product, the all-new Aura. Hyundai aims to offer stiff competition to the other compact sedans, namely the Maruti Suzuki Dzire and the Honda Amaze. So does this Hyundai have an aura of victory around it? Read below to learn more…
Alright lets face it, adding a boot to a hatchback isn’t the easiest thing to do for the designers, and that’s why, this segment hasn’t really seen very good looking cars. But then, Maruti with its new Dzire and Honda with the new Amaze have somewhat made decent looking compact sedans. In terms of design, the front of the Aura remains identical to the Grand i10 Nios which means the very cool looking boomerang DRL’s are retained and so is the new cascading premium satin finish front grille. In short this is a good looking front end.
As for sides, the Aura gets 15-inch diamond cut alloys with a really busy design and looks good. But where Hyundai have really played it smart is with the C-pillar because this is where things start to go wrong. Blacking out the C-pillar kind of covers up the design flaw to quite an extent. No it’s still not the best looking compact sedan but thanks to the smart styling it does not look too bad.
The rear section gets a lip spoiler that adds a sporty character to the Aura and 3-dimensional outer lens as Hyundai calls it gives the car a wide stance. This along with the snazzy design LED tail lamps gives the Aura a good looking rear. Overall, the Hyundai Aura is a smart looking car, but we still think Hyundai could have integrated the boot in a better way.
The interior layout remains identical the Grand i10 Nios. It gets a nice funky dashboard and this dimpled effect looks and feels good. You get dual tone colors and we particularly like how the infotainment screen merges with the instrument binnacle.
The driving seats are pretty comfortable and finding a comfortable driving position is not a struggle. As for the rear, since the wheelbase of the Aura is the same as the Nios, there is no extra legroom here, but then, there’s enough of it here anyways. But what we do appreciate is the flat bench and great under-thigh support which makes it very comfortable for those long drives.
The vehicle offers a boot space of 402-litres, which is shorter than the Honda Amaze. The Aura gets several first-in-segment features like wireless charging, driving rear view monitor and USB charger. You also get a nice 8-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android auto and arkamy’s premium sound. The features also include cruise control, rear ac vents and cooled glovebox.
The Hyundai Aura is available in three engine options. It gets the 1.2 litre petrol and a 1.2 litre diesel both which are available in the Nios as well. But the surprise package here is the 1-litre GDI petrol engine which has been borrowed from the Venue. Unfortunately, we did not driven the turbo variant. So the one here is 1.2 petrol with a 5-speed manual that produces 82 bhp and 114Nm of torque.
Like the Nios, power delivery is very linear and there is enough torque for all the city escapades. Even on the highways, the Aura will sit comfortably at three digit speeds, however do not expect it to blitz the highways. The power tapers off quickly and rushing the engine will only cause a lot of noise. Drivability is excellent and so is the in gear acceleration. The light clutch along with the well slotting gearshift, the Aura feels very nimble to drive. The claimed fuel efficiency for the manual petrol is at 20.50kmpl which is very impressive.
The diesel version is BS6 engine that comes mated to an AMT transmission and produces 74bhp and a meaty 190Nm of torque. Drivability is very good however, like in all other AMT's the shift lag needs to get used to. Refinement is very good with the Aura diesel boasting very good NVH levels. As for Fuel efficiency, the diesel Aura AMT manages a frugal 25.40 kmpl.
Now coming to the ride and handling, the Aura feels a tad stiff at low speeds, but as speeds get better so does the ride quality. Steering in both the diesel and petrol might not have enough feel but it’s checkable enough to dart into traffic gaps and has enough weight to enjoy the occasional corners.
So does the Aura have what it takes to shake up the competition? Well for now it does, it’s got more features than the competition, it’s got the most performance thanks to the turbo variant and it’s the only car in its segment with a BS6 diesel. Also with a long list of variants along with multiple engine and gearbox options, there is an Aura for everyone.
Photos By: Kapil Angane