Maruti Suzuki has finally launched the much-awaited SX4 replacement, the Ciaz. While we have already compared it with the Honda City, here we do a detailed spec comparison with all its major rivals.
Exteriors – All these four sedans fare well on the exteriors front. The Maruti Ciaz features a design that seems to be derived from the SX4. While it looks mature, the design doesn’t exude any sporty feel and it is quite neutral. The Honda City has a radical and sharp design. Some may find it good while some may find it not so good but we think that the Ciaz has a better face. The Hyundai Verna as we know has a funky design with lots of curves and lines while the Volkswagen Vento is the complete opposite with a straight body line and no unnecessary elements.
Interiors – Moving to the interiors, again the Ciaz comes with a dashboard that looks similar to that of other Marutis like the Swift and Ertiga. This design won’t be disliked by anyone but again it fails to impress everyone too. The Honda gets a nice layout with a touch pad for the AC and audio controls. Quality is good but it cannot match the Vento in build. The Vento’s interiors are classy and well-designed and the updated model is very good. The Verna gets jazzy insides with all the features and goodies you could ask for.
Engines – The City gets a free-revving 1.5-litre i-VTEC unit mated to a 5-speed manual box or a CVT. The engine loves to be pulled all the way to the redline. The Ciaz gets the same 1.4-litre unit that is there on the Ertiga. While the engine is good, Maruti should have taken some efforts to put a more powerful unit in the Ciaz. It comes with a 5-speed manual tranny or a 4-speed automatic that is very outdated. The Verna gets two petrol engines – 1.4-litre and 1.6-litre. Both engines get a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed autobox. The Vento gets a 1.6-litre petrol engine with a 5-speed MT. It also gets a 1.2-litre turbocharged unit with a 7-speed DSG but it has not been included in the comparison here.
Moving to oil-burners, again the City gets a 1.5-litre unit shared with the Amaze and Mobilio. It comes with a 6-speed manual transmission. The Ciaz gets the same 1.3-litre DDiS unit that powers the Swift, Swift DZire, Ritz and Ertiga. It is surely underpowered in this segment. Hyundai provides two diesel engines with the Verna – 1.4-litre and 1.6-litre. Both of them get a 6-speed manual transmission or a 4-speed automatic. The Vento now gets a 1.5-litre TDI unit that comes with a 5-speed manual box or a 7-speed dry clutch DSG. The DSG returns a claimed fuel efficiency of 21.21 km/l.
Mileage – Fuel efficiency is one of the few departments where Maruti rocks and the Ciaz trumps its competition. In petrol variants, the Ciaz gives a fuel efficiency significantly higher than its rivals. The City too gives good mileage while the Vento scores the lowest on this front. In diesel variants, again the Ciaz tops out and it is the most fuel efficient vehicle in the country now. Closely following the Ciaz is the City, which is followed by the Verna and then finally the Vento.
Pricing – Maruti has priced the Ciaz very aggressively and while it will garner a lot of sales in the initial few months, we think that it won’t be able to affect major rivals like the City later on. Other vehicles might be slightly more expensive, but then they provide better snob value, better quality, more features and so on. However what remains to be seen is if people will accept a Maruti sedan priced upwards of Rs. 10 lakhs? It will take a lot of time for the company to transform their current image into a premium image. Till then, rivals need not worry.
Honda City vs Maruti Ciaz vs Hyundai Verna vs Volkswagen Vento – Petrol Price Comparo
Honda City vs Maruti Ciaz vs Hyundai Verna vs Volkswagen Vento – Diesel Price Comparo