The Compact sedan segment has always been a match made in heaven for the Indian car buyer. They come loaded with features and tech right out of a Mercedes-Benz S Class, obviously a mid 1980s S Class and offer better fuel economy than most of the 250cc+ bikes, palatial interior space that can even put some of the MPV’s to shame and most of all they offer exceptional long-term reliability which makes this segment the king of the Taxi market. In this comparison, we’ll be pitching head-to-head the new 2018 Honda Amaze, the Maruti Suzuki Dzire and our in-house style guru the Tata Tigor.

Exteriors and Styling

The new Honda Amaze looks radically different from its previous funky avatar, while it is boxy at certain angles the Front-end has an Accord’ish look with a huge flat grille that neatly merges with the creases of the headlights. From the side, the Amaze has a prominent character line apart from which it looks bland. At the rear, it once again carries over the design language of the Accord with a prominent boot lip and elongated tail lights. Mercifully Honda has ditched most of the chrome elements from the Amaze and this should appeal to the younger audience and gives the Amaze all the more subtlety.

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The Dzire looks a lot more proportionate than its predecessor, Maruti has ditched its “slap a boot on the Swift” design and started with a clean sheet of paper. The wide grille garnished with acres of chrome is reminiscent of the Ambassador and distinguishes the Dzire from the Swift, the led headlamps and daytime running lights are a refreshing addition to the front and make it look very 2018. The side profile of the Dzire is an eyesore, no character lines or funky designs here but the 15-inch alloys do distract you from the hideousness. At the rear, the Dzire being the widest of the three does give it a more composed look and surprisingly the chrome strip on the boot doesn’t look like an afterthought. Overall it is imperative from the styling of the Dzire that Maruti has put in a lot of time and effort to shape up this car.

The Tata Tigor is just miles ahead when it comes to styling and does stand for the saying “Style doesn’t have to be expensive”. Tata’s Impact design philosophy has absolutely nailed it for the Tigor. The smoked headlamps, strong character lines, roof mounted spoiler and the 15-inch dual tone alloys give it a very distinctive look even on your rear-view mirror. The Tigor has the poise and stance of a coupe and yet combines the practicality of a sedan. Tata has dubbed the Tigor as a Styleback for its hatchback-like sloping rear which houses a sedan-like boot. The Tigor stands the tallest of all three cars and its wheelbase is 50mm longer than the Tiago. Overall it’s the Tigor that easily surges ahead in terms of styling.

Winner – Tata Tigor

 

Interiors and Comfiness

The dashboard of the new Honda Amaze feels a lot more premium than the Dzire and the Tigor and is a huge departure from the previous model. While there aren’t any soft-touch materials in the cabin, the dashboard is neatly textured and has a solid feel something where the Dzire lacks. From the Driver’s seat of the Amaze, there is a feel-good factor with everything you touch. Even the controls on the chunky steering wheel of the Amaze have a sense of quality and would definitely put a smile on your face. The dashboard of the Dzire is a lot more similar to the swift, except for the AC vents. While it does feel well screwed together, the blatant hard plastics mixed with the unimaginative styling does leave a lot to desire from the Dzire. The flat bottom steering wheel does enhance the driving experience and the controls on the steering wheel are of high quality. The Dashboard on the top spec variants come with a wooden finish to add a touch of premiumness but Maruti could have done better with the switchgear and texture of the plastics. Meanwhile, on the Tigor the dashboard which is a direct lift-off from the Tiago looks a lot funkier and plush than the Dzire, the body coloured AC vents do add to the Tigor’s appeal. The Tigor impresses in terms of cabin quality and there is a lot of attention to detail elements throughout the cabin.

As for Seat comfort and legroom, the Dzire easily leads the pack by being the widest of all three cars and offers a prodigious amount of rear legroom to keep it on par with C Segment sedans like the Ciaz and City. The Dzire is closely followed by the Honda Amaze which also provides a spacious rear seat which can seat three adults in comfort. The seat cushioning for the driver is spot on in the Dzire, but it does miss out on under-thigh support. In contrary, the seat comfort is excellent on the new Honda Amaze. The seat squab is wide and long to make it the comfiest driving experience of the three. The Cabin of the Amaze and the Dzire have an airy feel thanks to the dual tone interiors and the choice of fabric for the upholstery. The Tata Tigor is the narrowest of the three cars and this leads to a compromise for rear seat occupants as three abreast seating is a squeeze and is best suited for two adults. The seat cushioning is splendid as with all Tata cars and the driver seat is supremely comfortable and sits on a tie with the Honda Amaze. The rear seat legroom while not a tight one, is lesser than the Amaze and the Dzire. All the three cars get a rear armrest with cup holders for that added convenience and comfort. Overall all the three cars are nearly on a tie but the Dzire takes the lead on passenger comfort by offering rear AC vents and a 12V charging point at the rear, something which is missed on the Tigor and the Amaze.

Winner – Maruti Suzuki Dzire

 

Equipment

All the three cars get loads of equipment on their top trims. The new Honda Amaze is very generously equipped contrary to its previous version. It features a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system, dubbed the Digipad version 2. This is the updated version of the Digipad as seen on the BR-V, WR-V, City and the Jazz. It comes with Android Auto and Apple Carplay connectivity and the graphics are a lot better on this newer system. The Amaze also gets climate control supplemented by a powerful AC compressor to compensate for the lack of rear AC vents. Push button start and a keyless go system have made a debut in this new update. Its the only car in this comparison to feature cruise control to make life easier on those long highway journies. The Honda Amaze also offers a CVT gearbox in both the petrol and diesel variants which is first of its kind. The Dzire and the Tigor have adopted the cheaper AMT gearbox which is easy to operate but doesn’t let you have fun as the CVT. The new Amaze also debuts paddle shifters which are also a segment first and really does make the driving experience a very enjoyable one.

The Dzire also gets all the gubbins that a Maruti should have. For starters, there is a 7-inch SmartPlay infotainment unit that supports Android Auto and Apple Carplay. It also gets a keyless go system along with a push-button start, something which the Tigor misses out on. Both the Dzire and the Amaze offer 15-inch alloy wheels while it’s the Tigor that stands out with its sportier 15-inch dual-tone alloys that accentuate the side profile of the car.

The Tata Tigor being the least expensive of the three does miss out on certain features. The Tigor does get a 5-inch touchscreen infotainment system with MirrorLink through which you can avail Navigation and Music apps right off your phone. While the MirrorLink system does work well, it isn’t as easy to use as Android Auto/Apple Carplay and Tata Motors has given it the expected miss. With that said you have to factor that the Tigor is more than a Lakh cheaper than its rivals which makes it an absolute Value for Money as it isn’t all that lacking given its huge price difference. The boot space on the Tigor is the largest at 419 L followed by the Amaze at 400 L and the Dzire at 378 L. It does get a climate control unit and also offers 12V charging point for both front and rear occupants. The Tigor gets multi-drive modes to squeeze maximum fuel economy and power out of its 3 pot engine. A reverse camera along with parking sensors is offered on all three cars.

Winner – Honda Amaze

Driving Experience

Specifications aside, when it comes to the driving experience all the three cars have a different story to tell. On the diesel front, the Amaze gets a 1.5 L 4-cylinder engine that puts out 99 Bhp and 200Nm of torque. Power comes in early at 1800 rpm and it feels very punchy and is a joy to drive when mated to the CVT gearbox. Even at higher rpm’s this engine doesn’t sound like a Leyland tractor. Even the manual gearbox on the Amaze feels very crisp with its short, satisfying throws and is on par with the slick gearbox of the Dzire. The petrol Amaze gets the same 1.2 L 89 Bhp motor which feels very smooth and refined at city speeds but once you push it above 3500 rpm especially at its mid-range, it gets awfully noisy and the performance is weak. The lack of power can be felt when you hammer it and you would have to work the gearbox to keep it at the right pace. Overtaking at triple digit speeds is a stretch and will require downshifting from higher gears. On the bright side, this engine has been tuned for better fuel economy and returns a claimed mileage of 20 Kmpl.

The Dzire gets the same 83 Bhp 1.2 L 4-cylinder petrol and the 75 Bhp 1.3 L 4-cylinder diesel straight out of Maruti’s inventory.Like before, the petrol engine is very well muted and refined on start-up. The engine feels very sprightly and when you floor it, there isn’t any hesitation, something which the 1.3 L diesel engine lacks. Power delivery is nice and smooth, and the revs build in a linear manner. It has a sporty baritone once you push it to its mid-range and the mid-range performance is a lot better than the Amaze and the Tigor. The five-speed manual transmission is a breeze to use and the throws are short and slick. The ride quality has improved over the previous Dzire but still doesn’t match that of the Amaze and the Tigor. The 1.3 L diesel unit does suffer from turbo lag beneath 2000 rpm but surprisingly Maruti has managed to control it without spoiling the driving experience.Driving the Dzire calmly is surprisingly enjoyable as the lag doesn’t get bothersome inside the city. The power and torque figures aren’t that great and you’d have to downshift a gear or two for overtaking at high speeds. The best part about both these engines is the fact that they return 22 Kmpl(Petrol) and 28 Kmpl(Diesel) which makes the Dzire the most fuel efficient car in India.

The Tigor diesel comes with a 1.0-litre, three-cylinder turbocharged diesel engine that produces 69bhp and 140Nm of torque, making it the least powerful of the three cars. There is a noticeable amount of lag when you floor the throttle but it does manage to offer decent city and highway performance. The Tigor takes a lot of time to attain three-digit speeds but once you hit the open roads everything gets better and the engine doesn’t lose its steam till 130 kmph. The Tata Tigor feels planted and composed at high speeds and the ride quality is very impressive and tackles most of the speed bumps and potholes with ease. The steering is really light making it easy for tackling city driving but it does feel a little vague on the highway. While insulation levels inside the cabin are great, the engine does get audible and the three-cylinder clatter becomes very evident at higher rpm’s. As for the petrol Tigor, peak torque may come a bit higher when compared to the diesel, the engine does like to rev and offers adequate mid-range performance. Shifts are short and crisp and the good refinement levels do make it for an engaging drive.

Winner – Honda Amaze

Safety Kit

The Amaze and the Dzire offer ABS + EBD and Dual SRS Airbags as standard fitment across the range. Both these cars also get Isofix mounting points at the rear for child seats and seatbelt pre-tensioners along with force limiters. The Dzire also gets brake assist which is a segment first. The Tigor on the other hand solely misses out on the safety equipment as it offers Airbags, ABS and EBD only on the top-spec XZ variant. By global standards, all manufacturers should encourage passenger safety engineering and should make it accessible across all their models and variants. Bonus points to the Amaze and the Dzire on this front.

Pricing

All prices in INR *Lakhs Ex-showroom/-

Model

Honda Amaze

Model

Maruti Suzuki Dzire

Model

Tata Tigor

Petrol

Diesel

Petrol

Diesel

Petrol

Diesel

E

5.60

6.70

Lxi/Ldi

5.45

6.45

XE

5.13

6.06

S

6.50

7.60

Vxi/Vdi

6.29

7.29

XM

5.5

6.4

V

7.10

8.20

Zxi/Zdi

7.05

8.05

XT

5.88

7.05

VX

7.58

8.68

Zxi+/Zdi+

7.94

8.94

XZ

6.35

7.53

S CVT

7.40

8.40

Vxi AMT/ Vdi AMT

6.76

7.76

XZ(O)

6.9

7.86

V CVT

8.00

9.00

Zxi AMT/ Zdi AMT

7.52

8.52

XTA (AMT)

6.33

Zxi+ AMT/Zdi+ AMT

8.41

9.41

XZA (AMT)

7.8

Conclusion

The Dzire meets all the demands of the typical Indian car buyer. It’s superbly spacious, offers class-leading fuel economy, acres of chrome, loads of gadgets to play around and punchy engines to deliver nippy performance. The ride and interior quality on the Dzire could have been better for its price and this is where the Tata Tigor has proved to be a good value for money alternative as it offers everything that you would need but still manages to undercut its rivals by a Lakh or more. We wish Tata had done better with their engines as both the petrol and the diesel do suffer from lag and the three-cylinder clatter is pronounced at higher rpm’s.
The new Honda Amaze does answer all our prayers for an ideal compact sedan. It offers a congenial styling, feature-packed spec sheet complemented with refreshing interiors and most of all a very engaging driving experience. The pricing of the new Amaze isn’t all that offensive and is on par with the rivals. Overall the Amaze does nail it as the Jack of all trades and will be our pick for this comparison.

Honda Amaze 

 

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Santosh is Founder member of WheelBHP, an MBA Professional and automotive nut, a biker by heart. He is easily attracted towards cars and bikes and he has passion for these since he was too young (a school boy). His passion went so strong that he finally ended up writing blog about auto world and this led him to WheelBHP. Well, he likes to keep things shorted well and this makes him manage his work and blogging life together without any miss. The journey to WheelBHP was although not easy for him considering his professional and love life (which he referes to auto blogging) yet the enthusiasm and support from his friends and family made him stand and go ahead with what he likes the most.. 

2 COMMENTS

  1. Hi Santosh,
    just going through your article and it is definitely well written. However, I find something that I can not digest, especially after going through so many comparisons and reviews. Please have a look of the below sentence from your article:
    “As for Seat comfort and legroom, the Dzire easily leads the pack by being the widest of all three cars and offers a prodigious amount of rear legroom to keep it on par with C Segment sedans like the Ciaz and City”

    As far as I know, it is the All New Amaze, which has maximum cabin space in terms of length and width due to extended wheel base and related overhauls. In terms of height, Tigor leads the other two. Correct me if I am wrong..!!

    • Hi Tushar, you’re absolutely correct. The New Amaze does have ample of cabin space. However, the Dzire is the widest car with 1735 mm while the new Honda Amaze is 1,695 mm and the Tigor is 1677 mm. Thus the 2nd row seating is more spacious considerably. In terms of wheel base and length, Dzire and Amaze are equally numbered with 3995 mm.

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