In the year 2004, we had purchased a Hyundai Santro Xing, replacing our old Zen. After completing 8years, my father thought that itís high time that it be changed. The engine sound was more of a noise rather than a sound & the ac was loud to the point of being a sound pollutant. The suspension was making all sorts of sounds too. Recently I had purchased a Honda Jazz Select (urban titanium) from Pinnacle Honda, kolkata & my dad really liked the car- the space, refinement, FE, etc. Moreover he too wanted to get associated to the Honda Brand. The lane leading up to our house is slightly narrow so it had to be a small car only & his choice was Brio. BUYING PROCESS-
I requested him to take a look at the i-10 kappa 1.2, the i20 & the punto (all petrol models). He rejected the i20 due to its looks (personal choice, no offense) & the fact that itís not a new car any longer so as to speak. The punto was the favourite as far as looks were concerned, but it too got rejected due to fear of low resale value & less space at the rear seat (since we are all 6footers & heavily built)!!! He did take a TD of the i10 kappa2 & found that ingress & egress was the easiest. Moreover the i10 asta was coming fully loaded with all the goodies & insurance off too-what a deal! But then again, itís been around for quite some time & there were issues regarding low FE & we had a Hyundai before. So as the saying goes, all roads lead to Rome- we headed for the Honda Dealership. DEALERSHIP EXPERIENCE-
Kolkata has 2 Honda dealerships-Pinnacle Honda & Eastern Honda. I had taken my jazz last Dec from the former & I had posted a dealership review in this forum too Pinnacle Honda Excels
This time though, we opted for Eastern, as Pinnacle didnít have immediate stock of the VMT top model. Moreover, we wanted to opt for the Mode Package which was not available with Pinnacle. The delivery was promised on 11th March but we were in for a rude shock as the WB Govt had frozen registration of all new cars/variants to review the taxes. I had posted about this in a thread: http://www.theautomotiveindia.com/fo...s-kolkata.html
. Eventually after a lot of follow up & media highlights, we got the ALABASTER SILVER BRIO VMT 1.2 delivered on 21st march 2012. A very surprising thing was that when I actually started driving, I noticed that the fuel gauge was showing 4bars, which was incredible. When I took delivery of the jazz the SA had said it has 5lts of petrol, but in this case we had about 9lts with the odo reading 44kms! Pinnacle though had performed a proper puja & conducted a cake cutting ceremony while handing the jazz over. A framed photo too was given, whereas here, the frame was missing...Iím nitpicking here! FINAL QUOTE-
: HONDA BRIO 1.2 VMT (A.SILVER)
EX-SHOWROOM : 5,15,000.00
INSURANCE : 15,589.00
ROAD TAX & REG. : 32,730.00
COMPANY REG. : 2,700.00
ANTIRUST & PAINT : 6,949.00
MODE PACKAGE : 15,000.00
BODY COVER : 1,200.00
FILM (LLUMAR) : 5,750.00
TOTAL ON ROAD : 5,94,918.00 FREEBIES-
On the day of delivery as promised we were given the following freebies:
Ganesh Idol, My Shaldon car perfume, Tissue box, Steering cover, doctor stickers (my dadís a doc) & a box of cookies.... I suppose expecting anything more from Honda is foolish! EXTRAS FITTED-
ĎMode packageí which includes floor mats, illuminated side step garnish(only front 2 doors), front/rear/side/cargo protector to protect from scratches, chrome door inserts (not yet fitted as it was out of stock). Apart from this we have done the 3M polish & underbody antirust coating. The sunfilms installed are of Lumar (diamond series for front & silver series for sides). EXTERIRO DESIGN
: The design is funky, young & fluid. The car is full of energy it seems. As Honda says,Ē It loves you backĒ. The front nose is is very well balanced with the fog lamp & air dam cluster protruding out slightly forming a slight bulge ahead. The chrome in the grill with the big ĎHí of Honda integrated looks smart with the grill mesh behind it. The headlamp cluster too is funky & it sort of flows downwards forming a perfect symmetry with the overall frontend design language.
The car looks ravishing from profile. The bold line starts right from the front wheel arch & moves upwards to meet the shoulder line near the rear window sill. Its all aggression & sportiness personified.
The rear is a love you hate you story. Its either way, thereís no middle way! I guess it will grow upon me gradually since Iím not too fond of it. But yes, itís funky & it will make a statement when it passes by. Iím apprehensive about the heat infiltration through the huge glass area in the hatch. The clear lens tail lamps look retro which add to the unique persona of this vehicle. INTERIOR DESIGN:
This is the area which Iím really not too fond of at all. My dad is ok with it, but I just donít like it. I feel Honda shouldvíe done a much better job here. The speedo looks like itís lifted out of the Alto-very basic if you ask me. The dash is a mish mash of colours in this top model- beige, black, brown...itís all there!!! I dislike the way the middle aircon vent is placed beside the speedo. The whole casing is the shape of a hot air balloon with the hazard light below it, firing the balloon up! The aircon switches are placed slightly below, for which you need to reach down, though the switches are of fine quality. The music system doesnít come with a CD player which is again a dampener, even though we all mostly used USB nowadays. I found the sound of the system not up to the mark. The looks of the 2din music system is also quite unimpressive. The steering though is solid & can the adjusted for rake. It comes integrated with audio controls which are neat, but the steering of the jazz is again miles ahead since the latter had borrowed it from the civic. So itís a different category altogether. The horn of the BRIO is Horrendous- trust me people, it sounds like that of a jeep. The jazz has such a sweet horn like a sophisticated car, but the Brioís horn is effective. I say this because I was successful in scaring off a few cabbies trying to veer into my lane while driving home. INTERIORS & COMFORT-
The cost cutting is quite apparent in the Brio, since I drive the Jazz everyday to work. The glovebox is a little flimsy & doesnít shut close tightly. The switches of the aircon(vents are chrome) & foglamps are fine though. The seats are a bit on the harder side, but provides a lot of support. The headrests are integrated into the seat. Space is excellent upfront for both driver & passenger. Headroom as well as legroom is very much satisfactory. The car looks small from the outside but is quite roomy inside. But then again sitting 3 abreast in the rear is an issue. The rear seat can be folded flat which can free up a lot of luggage space. The underthigh support is average. Headroom & legroom is brilliant at the back all thanks to hondaís clever packaging. The front seats are quite narrow & the back portions are carved inwards thereby freeing up a lot of legspace for rear passengers. Both, the dash as well as the seats, are dual toned with beige & brown being the main colours in this variant. The power window switches in the rear are again flimsy & donít feel up to mark. Visibility is excellent & the car is very airy due to large glass areas. FEATURES-
The key features are- Foglamps, Front disc brakes & 10 spoke alloy wheels, USB/Aux in connectivity, steering rake adjust, front 2 airbags, ABS
, ECO light glows if you drive the car well (a feature introduced in the new city too), on board displays like tripmeter/FE gauge/Odo, Electronic power steering with steering mounted audio controls, Electronically adjustable side view mirrors, window lock, central remote locking. The driver side window doesnít have the auto up feature. Unlike the jazz, where the central door unlock button unlocks the boot & fuel lid, the Brio has separate conventional levers on the floor to unlock fuel lid & boot. BOOT-
This is a major drawback of this car. The boot is tiny, deep & the loading lip is high to provide structural rigidity. So getting bags in is an issue & bigger bags simply wonít go in unless the rear seat is folded flat (btw
itís a 100% fold, not split). Honda has provided a parcel tray along with the Brio which needs to be folded upwards to put bigger bags in the boot. The spare tyre is very deep inside & getting it out will be a tough job. DRIVE-
In our first ride back home from the dealership, we faced bumper to bumper traffic. The FE figure was showing an alarmingly low 4.6km/lt which ended up at 8.9km/lt when we reached home. The gearbox was silky smooth & so was the 1.2 ivtec engine. Iíd like to make a mention here that, both in Jazz & the City, the gear makes a Ďghet ghetí sound while shifting (not that it sounds bad or anything) which was totally absent in Brio. The road simply gave me no opportunity to stretch my right foot. Since it was late evening, I could make out a few things such as-
>headlamp throw is quite decent along with foglamp
>the 4 driver side power window switches do not have backlights as it does in the jazz
>there isnít any light near the usb/aux in connection as is the case in jazz. Even the boot doesnít have any light source, so you will have a tough time in the dark.
The low end torque is low so with a full load & ac on, it does struggle for initial few seconds but soon gets going. But I suppose this should improve marginally as the running increases. The steering was very smooth & manoeuvring it in traffic was a breeze. The air conditioning was excellent cause its already hot in kolkata now. We kept it at 2nd notch all the time. The brakes are absolutely fine, having the typical characteristics of a disc brake. The tyres are that of MRF 175/65 R14 82T. The FE will improve over time & Iím expecting 14 in city as my jazz gives me 13 in bumper to bumper traffic with ac.
All in all, the brioís a small cute hatch meant for a relatively small Indian family (4adults). It oozes style aggression & is full of funky bits. I will be posting later with further inputs as the days go by. Yes now we are officially a Honda Family!!!