This is a segment, where a customer, after having enjoyed his driving stints in earlier cars, might prefer to sit back and be driven. He also might like to announce his arrival, when the car comes to a halt. So, let us go by the process of elimination.
- Fluence is shown the exit first, because of the brand Renault, the lack of Petrol option (as per Renault site) and the mileage only oriented 1.5L Diesel Engine though it has excellent rear bench. Could be an ideal choice as a chauffeur driven Rental Car. Not as a personal vehicle.
- Next to be fired is the Chevvy, just because ... well it is a Chevvy. In spite of the looks, power, torque, space etc, it couldn't hold onto its #1 position when the D4D engine showed up. There is something missing in the Car or Brand or whatever. Also it was said to lack low end grunt in its original Diesel avatar.
- 140 horses or Facelift or not, Jetta is shown the door next, due to the attitude of its A$$ department. I might have aspirations to own a German car, but I am still an Indian who got accustomed to the dream A$$ treatment at Maruti, Hyundai etc. I expect and demand a certain level of comfort in maintaining my car. It is "my way or no way", when I, the customer has choice. Tata bye' bye' Jetta.
- The real fight is between Hy and To. One has power, features, excellent A$$ and what not !!! The other is a Toyota, has class leading comfort and has ... well ... hmmm ... 205Nm torque at 1800 rpm (where the hell can I hide the meagre 87 horses). Bring in the 138 bHP petrol, pay a Lac less and Altis smiles wide and bright. Also, when you factor in the words Status Symbol, mere presence of the name Corolla pushes Altis ahead of Elantra. Though the margin is just a little, it exists IMHO. I voted for Altis Petrol.
A word of caution to Toyota. The most difficult for any car manufacturer is the design of Engine - Gearbox combo. Hyundai has mastered it now. The next is the chassis set up, which so many experts are not happy, but are more than acceptable to the car owner. Making the rear seat comfy is Hyundai's least of challenges; when they hire a little team of experts from Godrej Interio
that will be sorted out. When Hyundai really pleases the experts in the ride and handling department by hiring the guys from Linea or Fiesta team (I would quadruple their salary, if I were there at Hyundai TOP management), the Game is on. Time will be up for Toyota to bring in more horses with the Diesel otherwise the 126 horses will Stylishly Gallop ahead with all those features. PS:
This is pure coincidence Akash, me being the first to cast vote in your 2nd poll too within a week.