Test drove the Honda Amaze Diesel SMT today.
1. Zero turbo lag. Accelerates linearly. It pulls well in all gears. Performance is also very good. More than enough grunt for the highways too.
2. Beautiful gearshift quality. Very short, precise throws and light. Light clutch as well.
3. "Amaz(e)"ingly spacious. I set the front drivers seat according to my preferences and sat in the passenger seat at the back. There was around 15cms space between my knees and the back of the seat. I was shocked because I didn't expect that much space.
4. Suspension is softer than the Polo and thus masks bumps very well at city speeds compared to the stiffly sprung Polo.
5. The SMT comes with steering mounted audio controls and electric mirrors (not power folding though). No airbags but ABS
present in all diesel variants.
6. Short turning radius of 4.5m is a boon.
7. Low transmission tunnel is nice compared to the Polo's mountain of a transmission tunnel.
1. Noisy engine. I thought the Polo was noisy but the 1.2TDI engine sounds
refined compared to the tractor-like 1.5 iDTEC. I could not believe that I was sitting in a car that is closely related to the City and Civic and the likes. Come on Honda.
2. Steering lacks some feel compared to the Polo but is good enough for the city.
3. The dashboard looks and feels very cheap. Definitely does not suit a car that, in the Vx variant, costs Rs. 8.9l OTR Kerala.
4. Cost cutting evident in places such as the inside of the boot lid which has an exposed lock mechanism. Looks very cheap.
5. The body metal sheet is also thin compared to the Polo.
6. Rear would be cramped for three well built adults. It makes a very comfortable 4 seater though.
It would make for a good city car and because of the non-existent turbo lag, it would make a nice car for someone who is switching over from a petrol car to a diesel car with no prior experience in driving diesel cars.
Would I buy the car? No is the answer. I'd rather buy a second-hand Vento than the Amaze at this price. But that is just me. (No offence to anyone)