One of the best-selling cars for Maruti, the Dzire now enters its third generation and promises to offer more luxury and sophistication that's unheard and unseen, especially in the compact sedan segment. Does it deliver? Indian automobile website MotorBeam.com finds out.
Though the Tata Indigo eCS introduced the compact sub-4 metre sedan segment to India, it's relatively easier to say that the Maruti Dzire perfected it.
One of the best-selling cars for Maruti, the Dzire now enters its third generation and promises to offer more luxury and sophistication that's unheard and unseen, especially in the compact sedan segment.
Going by just the looks, a lot has changed in the third generation Dzire.
Yes, there a lot of design elements borrowed from the new Swift but there are tweaks to the A-pillar.
You get a new grille, projector headlights with LED DRLs (on the range-topping Z trim) and LED tail-lights.
There's chunky 185-section rubber with precision-cut 15-inch alloy wheels (on the top spec Z trim again) that look good but on the lower spec L and V trims you will have to settle with skinny 165-section rubber with steel wheels.
Overall, from the side profile, the sedan looks a lot more proportionate than ever.
Not to forget, the generous chrome treatment on the grille, front bumper, window sills and the boot lid.
The dashboard has been completely redesigned. The dual-tone black and beige continues.
You get a new 3-spoke multi-function steering wheel (flat-bottom unit), new instrument cluster, SmartPlay infotainment system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, USB, AUX and Bluetooth connectivity.
The wood trims on the dash, steering wheel and door pads add a sense of premium touch to the cabin.
The sedan gets larger rear doors which means ingress and egress isn't cumbersome as before. Not just that, space at the rear too has increased, all thanks to the increase in wheelbase (now 2450 mm).
The seats get good cushioning, side bolstering and are large and comfortable.
Knee room has clearly improved at the rear but headroom is disappointing, especially if you're someone above 6 feet.
Maruti has tried and made the boot even larger which now measures 378-litres (up by 62-litres).
Other features include an automatic climate control, driver seat height adjustment, electrically foldable and adjustable ORVMs, 6-speaker (on top-end Z+ trim) and 4-speaker (on the V and Z trims) audio system and push-button start.
The third generation Maruti Dzire continues with the tried and tested 1.3-litre DDiS diesel motor which comes mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox (as standard) or a 5-speed AMT unit (as optional) which Maruti likes to call AGS (Auto Gear Shift).
The oil-burner unit produces 74 HP at 4000 RPM and 190 Nm of twist at 2000 RPM. We've driven other cars with this diesel powertrain and turbo lag isn't still contained, however, the mid-range is punchy.
The clutch feels light and the gearbox shifts cogs smoothly.
The AMT while offering the convenience feels a tad sluggish. In terms of fuel efficiency, Maruti claims 28.40 km/l but in real world conditions, the car returns around 16-18 km/l in the city and 20-22 km/l on the highway.
The suspension is softly sprung and hence the ride quality is plush.
The car just glides over those bad patches of roads, however, at high speeds, you do feel the thuds inside the cabin.
The steering weighs up well and offers a decent feel. Handling is good but ground clearance isn't the best. Brakes offer a good bite.
Dual airbags, ABS with EBD and Brake Assist and ISOFIX child seat mounts are standard across the Dzire range which tells that safety has been at the forefront for the carmaker.
The automaker has a workshop in almost every nook and corner of the country, so, servicing the Dzire will be a breeze.
We really have not spoken about the negatives of the Dzire till now, doesn't mean there aren't any.
For instance, the overall fit and finish of the plastics inside the cabin could have been better, steering could have offered better feedback but that is us nit-picking.
But as an overall package, the sedan has bettered in terms of cabin space, ambience and exterior looks too.
The new Dzire is safer than ever, thanks to the new HEARTECT platform (that is lighter and reinforced) and other life-saving acronyms.
All in all, the Dzire does make for a good buy in the segment.