Your Choice Between Premium Hatchbacks and Budget Sedans?


Your Pick?


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Thread Starter #1

raj_5004

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I have always preferred hatchbacks over sedans. I find them to be more stylish when compared to sedans & also, if I buy a maxi hatch, I get a very spacious & feature packed hatch compared to a bare basic & boring sedan.

1) Image/Status symbol :

This topic came into light when I was discussing with a forum member in some other thread.

Its a fact that, in India, hatchbacks are looked down upon. They are considered "inferior" to sedans. Infact, sedans are considered upmarket & is the key to status symbol. It is perceived that sedans are used by the business executives whereas hatchbacks are used by the "normal" people.

It is also true that a person who thinks likewise will jump on the first opportunity to buy a sedan, irrespective of whether he needs the boot or not, irrespective of whether a hatch is more feature packed than a similarly priced sedan.

First let me start with listing the prices of some high end hatchbacks -

(on-road prices in Lacs, Mumbai taken from ACI)

Punto 90 HP - 8.08
Swift D - 7.67
Micra D - 7.40
Polo D - 8.20
Etios Liva D - 6.86
Fabia 1.6 - 7.28
i20 CRDi Asta - 8.19

For the same price or less, you get a sedan like Fiesta Classic, Dzire, Verito, Manza or Etios.

So, it is clear that someone buying a Polo or a i20 or a Fabia spends the same money as someone buying the above mentioned sedans. But some old school guys take the sedans as a status symbol & the hatches as cheap. What's the logic? What is it with the 3 box shape that classifies it as a status symbol? On the contrary, a guy having a 8 Lac hatch should be having a better status symbol as he bought a hatch for the price of a sedan... [lol]

2) Features :


It is pretty evident that for the same price, a hatch is anyday more feature laden than a sedan. Compare the above mentioned cars. There is no car in that segment more feature laden than the i20 & the Punto.

3) Space :


When it comes to the rear seat & boot space, the sedan wins hands down. But a hatch is bought by mainly those who would be having a second bigger car at home or is using this car only within city or is a small family of two. So rear space or boot space does not matter to them. Why should they unnecessarily lug around a empty boot in town?

4) Fuel efficiency :


No debates on this. A hatch is more efficient than a similar sedan owing to it's lesser kerb weight. Compare Punto & Linea, Swift & Dzire, etc. Please dont compare Polo 1.6 with Verito!

5) Performance :


This is highly debatable. I feel when you compare the sedans in this segment itself, hot hatches like Polo 1.6 leave the Verito & Dzire in dust. As you go the segment above, obviously the Verna 1.6 & Vento is much faster. But that wont be a fair comparison as they cost a lot more too.

6) Handling & Ride :


Someone in this forum said that a hatchback cannot have a good ride quality. Get a ride in a Punto, Polo & Fabia. It has a much better ride than Etios & Dzire. Just because a car is small, does not mean it has to be bouncy!

Handling is mostly better in hatchbacks than sedans, as unlike sedans, hatches dont have excessive overhangs (weights behind the axles). All their weight is between the front & rear axles since the four wheels are on the four corners of a hatch. This gives them good weight distribution which aids handling. Compare a Swift to a Dzire, Liva to a Etios, Punto to a Linea... the hatch is known to be better in fast & tight corners.

So, all said & done,
when a hatch is faster, is more fuel efficient, has more features, has better ride & handling and cost the same as an under equipped 'budget' sedan, then why do I need to buy a sedan, especially when I dont need the boot? Why is a sedan associated with status? On telling them the on road price of my Punto, people tell me that I could have gone for a Dzire instead, its a sedan after all. Why is a "sedan" so ovehyped?
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

Difference between Hatchback and Sedan

Hatchback: Hatchbacks may be described as three-door (two entry doors and the hatch) or five-door (four entry doors and the hatch) cars—and may range in size from city cars and superminis to small family cars, mid-size cars (e.g., the Toyota Camry hatchback (1982–1986).

Hatchbacks are very popular in India. Their success is attributed to the fact that they are less expensive to buy, more economical to maintain, easy to drive on crowded Indian roads, and take less parking space.

Maruti 800 has been the most successful of hatchbacks in India with over 2.5 million sales since its launch in 1983. Since 2004, Maruti 800 has been overtaken by Maruti Alto as the car with highest annual sales. Entrance of several foreign car makers in the Indian market and growth of Indian companies has also attributed to the their success in local market. In March 2009, Tata Motors launched Nano, the cheapest road hatchback (and car) in the world.

Sedan:
A sedan (American English, Canadian English, Australian English) or saloon car (British English, Irish English, New Zealand English) is a passenger car in a three-box configuration with A, B & C-pillars and principal volumes articulated in separate compartments for engine, passenger and cargo. The passenger compartment features two rows of seats and adequate passenger space in the rear compartment for adult passengers. The cargo compartment is typically in the rear, with the exception of some rear-engined models, such as the Renault Dauphine, Tatra T613, Volkswagen Type 3 and Chevrolet Corvair. It is one of the most common car body styles.

Definition source: wikipedia

My take on this

IMO boot space is major primary deciding factor off-course apart from the budget in this comparison, now about ride and handling some says sedans are better in this compare to hatchback but i found better ride quality in sedans and unmatchable handling in hatchbacks.

For more city run (with heavy vehicular traffic) i vote for hatchback and for more highway run i vote for sedan.

Let's see what other have to say.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

The cars you mentioned from the Hatchback segment are way better than entry level sedans, IMHO.

Be it looks, handling, ride quality, suspension et al. You mention it and the hatches will score more points than the sedans/saloons.

I fail to understand when few guys say the hatches do not look appealing. Picking from the cars you mentioned in the comparison I think only the Fiesta classic & Vento are good in terms of looks when compared to hatchbacks. This is simply because they are not overdone in the looks department. The looks are kept as simple as it can get which gives them edge over the Dzire, Manza & Etios.

Having said that i will any day rate the Polo over Vento & Liva over the Etios for how they look!
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

This is a debatable topic.
The perception of hatchbacks as a compromise started i think early when the MS esteem and the zen were launched.
The zen costed around 3 l when introduced and the esteem around 4-5Lakhs i think.
Since then the hatches were looked upon as the class below the sedans and this has continued since.
Practically one should not count the dezire or the indigo as a sedan.
They are stretched hatches.
But with premium sedans present in their category like the laura, corolla, civic and the absence of hatches in that category prevents the average consumer to shake off his old school of thought that hatches can be any better.
Only if manufacturers were to launch the civic hatch ,fiesta hatch then the consumer would understand the advantages in a hatch .
But because of preconceived notions i highly doubt if one can see premium hatches in the indian market.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

Practically one should not count the dezire or the indigo as a sedan.
They are stretched hatches.
There is not standard name as stretched hatchebaks. you pay for sedan ,you tell mention it as sedan,your RC shows as sedan and manufacturer also quote it as sedan.

But with premium sedans present in their category like the laura, corolla, civic and the absence of hatches in that category prevents the average consumer to shake off his old school of thought that hatches can be any better.
Old habbits dies hard and when you have pocket full of money you act more ignorant and arrogant.

I have always found Hatchbacks more flexible than sedans ,open the hatch fold down the seats you can place a small bike.

I have done a video shooting in my punto which could only be possible through hatch door else i'd had to hire a truck.
 

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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

Old habbits dies hard and when you have pocket full of money you act more ignorant and arrogant.

I have always found Hatchbacks more flexible than sedans ,open the hatch fold down the seats you can place a small bike.

I have done a video shooting in my punto which could only be possible through hatch door else i'd had to hire a truck.
+10 to that. Very true when we think of practicality of the Hatchbacks to use the space as carriage. You barely have any option like that in Sedans/saloons.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

You are right Raj and others who feels that people tend to attach Sedan with status. Because it is in our nature and we have been brought up like that. Still almost 80% decisions were made by couple of people if not the entire family or relatives or friends as far as buying a car. People take advice from friends and others while buying a Pant, T-Shirt or similar items. So, how can they take a decision of buying a car alone ? Here comes the sacrificing your own requirements or not being clear what you want !

Sedan will give more space be it boot or seating compartment but are we actually going to utilized it or not !

One of my friend is looking for a car and started off from i20. Then I asked him to check Polo, Fabia and Punto and consider petrol vs diesel comparison. He started some calculation and reached to an conclusion that he needs a diesel car however, average monthly running would be around 1400 to 1500kms. I helped him coming from diesel to petrol car but very next day he booked Dsire diesel (LDI). Upon asking, his father asked him to buy a BIG car and he thinks petrol prices are increasing and no one knows the limit. He was not bothered nor his family paid any attention to safety features at all. When I asked him about ABS, airbags, he said ignorantly I do not need safety features as I do not drive fast during rainy days [frustration]

So his decision was driven by his family and there are thousands like him [surprise]
 

TSIVipul

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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

Well,I am a bit confused.Why?Because I drive myself.
There are some hatches like Punto,Polo,Fabia,Figo etc which are fun to drive.
But then there are sedans like Fiesta 1.6,Honda City,Honda Civic,Skoda Laura etc etcwhich have very sharp handling and performance characteristics.So at last I voted for a sedan because in my views no hatch can still match them.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

But then there are sedans like Fiesta 1.6,Honda City,Honda Civic,Skoda Laura etc etcwhich have very sharp handling and performance characteristics.So at last I voted for a sedan because in my views no hatch can still match them.
We Indians are so unfortunate ,we dont have much options may it be hatches or SUVs.


There are some hatches like Punto,Polo,Fabia,Figo etc which are fun to drive.
Vipul Did you ever drive punto ? If yes do tell me what is fun to drive and what is not.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

Well,I am a bit confused.Why?Because I drive myself.
There are some hatches like Punto,Polo,Fabia,Figo etc which are fun to drive.
But then there are sedans like Fiesta 1.6,Honda City,Honda Civic,Skoda Laura etc etcwhich have very sharp handling and performance characteristics.So at last I voted for a sedan because in my views no hatch can still match them.
we havent yet driven the civic or the fiesta hatch.

the options with the hatches are limited so are SUVs.[anger]
 

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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

the options with the hatches are limited so are SUVs
That is the bitter truth . I was so wishing to have Abarth ,punto t-jet, bravo , fiat500 ,abarth ss , Peugeot 307, and many more ..these hatches have world renowned performance records. but in India no chance!
well I am bit economy conscious guy so I don't bother to go for high end stuffs unless it is related to audio.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

@raj,

I have replied in sedan or UV thread for the first post of yours here. If required, I can copy-paste my reply here.
we havent yet driven the civic or the fiesta hatch.

the options with the hatches are limited so are SUVs.[anger]
Correction-

The fiesta is actually a hatch & is sold as a hatch is international market. Only in India, they have put boot to it, ala Dzire. This is even more evident that the front goes well with the rear in case of Fiesta hatch while the rear/boot looks horrible in case of fiesta sedan.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

That is the bitter truth . I was so wishing to have Abarth ,punto t-jet, bravo , fiat500 ,abarth ss , Peugeot 307, and many more ..these hatches have world renowned performance records. but in India no chance!
well I am bit economy conscious guy so I don't bother to go for high end stuffs unless it is related to audio.
Yes these hatches are good but then the peugeot will be bit expensive and the performance records are more on the race tracks, no doubt it is a nice car. But as you said no channel and parts will be a major problem buddy.

@raj,

I have replied in sedan or UV thread for the first post of yours here. If required, I can copy-paste my reply here.

Correction-

The fiesta is actually a hatch & is sold as a hatch is international market. Only in India, they have put boot to it, ala Dzire. This is even more evident that the front goes well with the rear in case of Fiesta hatch while the rear/boot looks horrible in case of fiesta sedan.
Yes you are right buddy fiesta was a hatch and recently they have started selling it as a sedan. Both the fiesta and civic are nice hatch but only for the city driving. And they give very nice FE as well.
 
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Re: Comparison Between Hatchbacks v/s Sedans

Yes you are right buddy fiesta was a hatch and recently they have started selling it as a sedan. Both the fiesta and civic are nice hatch but only for the city driving. And they give very nice FE as well.
Moment there is some issue in overall performance a sedan becomes stretched hatchback,"selling it as sedan" ,hopeless blah blah.

Only in India, they have put boot to it, ala Dzire.

Please Make it clear what is the meaning of word sedan ?
(please let it be one line answer so that layman like me can comprehend)
 
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