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Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

Last updated on: July 01, 2013 15:24 IST

Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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Faisal Ali Khan

The Honda Amaze really amazes with its performance and packaging, writes Faisal Ali Khan of MotorBeam.com

Honda launched the Amaze in India earlier this year and the vehicle has already received 22,000 bookings for the Japanese automaker.

The Amaze is a sub 4-metre compact sedan, which benefits from small car excise duties, helping Honda to price the vehicle very aggressively.

Priced bang against the Maruti Suzuki Swift DZire, the Honda Amaze is the sedan version of the Brio but cleaver packaging makes the Amaze the best compact sedan in the market today. So how does the Honda Amaze fare?

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Photographs: Courtesy, Honda

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Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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The exteriors of the Honda Amaze reveal its rather small dimensions. The sub 4-metre length means the Amaze is not longer than a premium hatchback (like the Hyundai i20 or the now discontinued Honda Jazz).

The front is exactly like the Brio, except the chrome grille and complete body coloured bumper. The headlights are from the Brio too.

Come to the side and you are pleasantly surprised by the neatly integrated boot which doesn't look like an after thought.

Sharp lines run across the vehicle and accentuate the styling. The boot gets a chrome strip along with tail lights which are typical of a Honda vehicle.

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Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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Honda has done a fantastic job to make the Amaze look appealing even in such a small package.

Step inside and you are greeted by the same dashboard, which is present in the Brio. The dashboard design is youth oriented and the two-tone treatment looks nice.

The quality is very good and everything feels like a Honda. There are quite a few storage areas inside the cabin and the Amaze has supportive seats although under thigh support is just about average.

The integrated head rests are not such a good idea as they compromise on comfort to a certain extent.

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Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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The Amaze boasts of excellent rear seat space, which can accommodate even tall passengers in utmost comfort. Headroom is plenty and so is the knee room.

The company has debuted a heat-absorbing windshield on top variants, which reduces heat inside the cabin by six degrees.

The boot is an amazing 400 litres which trumps the Maruti Suzuki Swift DZire's 316-litre trunk by a significant margin.

Honda has clearly done excellent packaging and despite of the vehicle being only 4-metres in length, it offers amazing interior room and boot space.

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Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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The Honda Amaze is powered by two engines - a 1.2-litre petrol engine which is mated to 5-speed manual and automatic gearbox.

This i-VTEC unit develops 88 PS of peak power at 6000 RPM and 109 Nm of peak torque at 4500 RPM.

This engine has the same gear ratios as the Brio and performance is good with mid and top-end of the rev band offering sporty performance.

However at the low end, especially under 2500 RPM, this motor doesn't spin too quickly and a quick down shift is needed to amplify progress. The motor is quite drivable though and refinement levels are excellent.

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Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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The ARAI certified mileage is 18 km/l for the manual version and 15.5 km/l for the automatic version.

For the very first time in a Honda car in India, a diesel engine has made its way to the hood.

Honda has given the Amaze a 1.5-litre diesel engine, which belts out 100 PS of peak power at 3600 RPM and 200 Nm of peak torque at 1750 RPM, coupled to a 5-speed manual gearbox.

Performance from this motor is a pure delight, power delivery being very linear with almost no signs of turbo lag.

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Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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Mid range is where this oil burner really excels, pulling strongly although the motor is quite audible inside the cabin.

The diesel Amaze is the most fuel-efficient car in the country, returning a claimed mileage of 25.8 km/l as per ARAI.

Driving dynamics of Honda cars are always sorted, the Amaze is no different. The suspension is a bit softly sprung at the rear and the Amaze absorbs bumps with reasonable composure.

Handling is surefooted too although the steering is not communicate enough at high speeds. However the steering wheel is very light at low speeds which makes city driving a breeze.

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Why Honda Amaze is the best entry-level sedan

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Braking performance is good and the pedal has good bite. The MRF tyres on the Amaze are a bit of a letdown and tend to lose grip sooner than they should.

The Honda Amaze is easily the best compact sedan in the market today, with its good balance of ride and handling, excellent packaging, good performance and frugal engines.

The company has priced the Amaze quite well with the base model starting at Rs 499,000 for the petrol E variant, going up to Rs 763,000 for the top-end diesel (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi).

This easily makes the Honda Amaze the leader in its segment.




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