Honda has been in the Indian market for more than decade but has not been able to garner a larger pie in terms of sales. Dependent on petrol models only, the Japanese car maker lost ground to the new entrants who offered cars with similar luxury features & Premiumness and most importantly with a diesel option.
Honda launched the Brio hatch in the compact car segment which is the largest in terms of sales in India but could not really create the necessary impact. Hence, Honda needed a model which could provide the required trust to the company and win back customer confidence.
The Japanese car maker took a bold step by introducing the first diesel car in the Indian market, the Amaze compact sedan. The Amaze if the first car from the Honda stable to feature a diesel engine which has been specifically made for the Indian market. The Amaze has helped the company with the necessary volumes and also elevated it to the fifth position.
We tested the Amaze diesel, petrol and petrol automatic. Let see is the Amaze is really an amazing product.
Honda launched the Amaze sedan in the Indian market on the 11th of April. The Amaze is built on the Brio platform and is currently manufactured at the company’s Noida plant. Honda has maintained a high local content of about 90% which helped the company to price the car on target against its main competitor Maruti Suzuki Swift Dzire.
India is the first country, where Honda offers the Amaze with Honda’s latest i-DTEC diesel engine technology. The car is also available with a 1.2 i-VTEC petrol with a manual and automatic transmission.
The styling of the Amaze is contemporary and draws styling cues from the Brio.. The Amaze features the same exterior concept Double Triangle’ Form on the Brio, conveying vibrant energy from nose to tail, and a sleek look that emphasizes its width and advanced styling. There is no much differentiation when viewed from the front expect the new 2 slot horizontal chrome grille with the Honda badge at the centre.
The overall profile is aerodynamic with the boot neatly integrated at the rear. Compared to competition compact sedans the Amaze seems a lot more proportionate. From the side too, the car seems decent as compared to the Swift which looks like an extended hatch. The chrome granish on the rear gives the car a slightly premium look.
Other features include side indicators on ORVMS and stylish alloy wheels. (The diesel and petrol variants are equipped with a different design allow wheels). Side indicators on the ORVMs are standard on the VX model and can electrically controlled and folded by just a touch of a button. Expect for the base variant E, all the other variants are offered with body coloured outer door handles and ORVMs. Honda is offering fog lamps on the top VX variant only, however one can always get it fixed as an accessory.
Step into the car and it feels no different than the Brio in the front. The Amaze gets the same dashboard, seats and interior finish as the Brio which seems a little downmarket for sedan of its class. The interior quality is not really upto the Honda mark and seems like the company has done some compromise to keep costs under check.
The seats are integrated which is a let down considering all cars in the similar price bracket offer seats with adjustable head restraints. Honda has focused more on the rear seats which offer a lot more space for the rear passengers keeping true to its concept of “man maximum, machine minimum” design calling for maximizing the space available for people and minimizing the space required for mechanical components.