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09 Apr, 2017 ,
Honda although late to the party has finally made it to the sub 4 meter sedan bandwagon. Launched in 2013 the Amaze became an instant household name for its big car feel, efficiency, comfort, practicality and has sold more than 2 lakh units. Now in a bid to stay focused in the competition, in a refreshed avatar the Amaze is back with more equipment and a CVT gearbox. Is it better than before?
The Honda Amaze looks chunkier from the front thanks to the almond shaped headlights, larger bumper, a revise air dam, built in fog lamps and a large chrome strip spread across the grill. Coming to the side profile you have the beefy wheel arches which houses the unique ten spoke wheels. You can also see some character creases and cuts that run along the side profile. The shorter front end makes way for a longer rear which makes the car look proportionate. Coming to the rear you get new tail lights which are large and the bumper is edgy. A thick chrome line also runs across the boot which makes the rear look elegant. The overall design is much better and appealing than its predecessor.
The interior of the Amaze is spruced up quite a lot due to a lot of criticism in the past. The dash board is all new and contemporary which feels borrowed from the Honda city. The dash now comes with automatic climate control, air conditioning unit and a new audio system. The steering now comes with leather wrapping and mounted controls. The touch and quality of the dash is much better with improved plastics. You also get USB and power outlets as well. The cabin now comes with 5 bottle holders and 4 cup-holders. There are a lot of cubby holes and storage spaces to store your handy pocket sized belongings. The multi-information display console looks big and circular that shows your average fuel consumption, trip meter, time, ambient temperature, range, kilometers driven and fuel gauge. The cabin is also integrated with Bluetooth audio system along Bluetooth hands-free connectivity. The Orvms are also electronically adjustable and foldable. Air conditioning is fully automatic and cools down the cabin significantly. The Honda Connect App provides the vehicle owners with information like impact alert, share my location, locate my car, vehicle help, trip analysis and Manual sos.
Seating in the car is pretty comfortable and there is ample legroom and should room for the rear passengers. The seats have adequate cushioning and thigh support. The rear passenger seat also comes with an arm rest coupled with cup holders. Getting in and out from the rear is easy thanks to the gap between the seats and the B pillar. Floor is slightly mounted in the center and the boot space is now 400 litres. The cabin feels positive for the driver and passengers alike. Good effort from Honda!
We will talk about the manual petrol first and to be very honest the refinement level is just amazing on the Amaze. The1.2l i-VTEC motor feels very peppy and churns out 88bhp and 109nm of torque. The car feels very zippy to drive in the city traffic. The five speed manual gearbox is slick and offer perfect shifts. NVH levels from the engine are very good and we didn’t experience any vibrations or rattling from the engine in to the cabin.
Coming to the CVT and the engine is mated to a 1.2l i-VTEC petrol engine that churns out 90 PS and almost the same amount of torque (petrol manual). The best part is that on the go you won’t find any rubber band effect unlike other CVTs in the competition and the shifts are very smooth and unnoticeable. The CVT also comes with a sport mode which allows the revs to climb up before up shifting. Be it the city or highway the gearbox performs very well with amazing throttle response. NVH levels are good again with minimal vibrations and engine noise coming in to the cabin.
The 1.5 diesel engine offers an impressive 100bhp and 200NM of torque. The gear shifts are bit reluctant to slot and could have been better. NVH levels are great with the use of better insulated materials. Throttle response feels good in both city and highway and feels much livelier than the petrol.
The ride quality on the Honda Amaze is fantastic. The suspension setup on this car is soft yet firm and gives amicable ride quality at low speeds. Be it bad patches or undulations the car holds itself in a very composed manner. However body is roll is pretty evident and the car is not a confident corner carver. The steering is electronically powered and feels very light in the city. The response from the steering is quick and direct, that coupled with the 4.7 meters of turning radius makes the Amaze a good city companion. At high speed on the highway the steering feels well weighted and settled. Brakes do the job of stopping the car in a civilized manner.
ABS is standard across all variants except the base petrol. Airbags are standard on all base models while the entry level E and S trims get it as an option.
Both petrol and CVT claims an ARAI certified fuel efficiency of 18.6kmpl which translated in to 12kmpl in the city and 19kmpl on the highway. The diesel unit offered better fuel economy of 20kmpl in the city and 26kmpl on the highway.
Honda is known for good service quality and back up. Service cost is slightly on the higher side compared to Maruti and Hyundai. However it is acceptable considering the overall quality of spare parts and reliability.
The Honda Amaze is improved on the exterior and the interior alike. With zippy petrol and pocket friendly diesel the Amaze stands on its own. With the CVT option the car is even more convenient to drive in the highly populated city and the pricing seems to be on point too. Overall the Amaze will amaze you with its unique charm and comfort.
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