2014 proved to be strong evidence for the fact that Indians are becoming more and more obsessed with the sub four meter sedans. It was one of the largest car selling segments last year in India which marked the entry of two new players, Hyundai Xcent and Tata Zest. Both cars joined the already quite popular players, Honda Amaze and Maruti Suzuki Dzire. All four cars sell in good numbers and currently are the best examples of complete value for money car in our market. The added boot for the sedan look and fuel efficiency like any hatch makes them a good buy and following the same concept few more cars will enter this segment in 2015 to make the competition even stiffer. What to expect this year? Let's find out.
New Ford Figo Sedan
We saw it first at the Auto Expo 2014 and this will be Ford's one of the most crucial launches this year in India. Figo sedan will be a sub-four meter version of Ford's Ka+ from Brazil. The original Ka+ is over 4metre in length but Ford will trim it down to below sub-four meter to avail the tax benefits similar to what they did in the case of Ecosport.
Figo sedan will share some of the styling cues like front trapezoidal front grille, headlamps and sharp body lines from the new Fiesta which will surely make it the most visually appealing car in its segment. The set of engines are likely to be the 1.4L diesel engine and 1.2L petrol engine from the current Figo coupled with five-speed manual gearbox. The top model may have features such as push button start, Ford Sync system and 15-inch wheels to appeal to the customers. The one to watch out for.
Maruti Dzire Facelift
In early 2015, we will see the launch of the facelifted version of Maruti Dzire. Currently, Dzire dominates the segment and rules it by a huge margin and in order to maintain its top position, Maruti will soon launch the updated version. The new car will get new front grille, bumper and new design for its 15-inch alloy wheels on the outside while it will share new premium features inside with the newly launched Swift. The additional features will be push button start, Bluetooth connectivity, auto folding mirrors and rear parking sensors. Technically, it will retain its 1.2L petrol and 1.3L diesel engine with more fuel efficiency than before as seen in the case of Swift adding even more value to this highly popular compact sedan.
Volkswagen Vento CS
For the very first time, the German auto giant Volkswagen will debut with a sub-four meter sedan in India built especially for India. This car will be positioned between Polo and Vento and is likely to become India's most premium sub-four meter sedan. The chances are that this car will feature the same engine line up as in Polo which means you will get a 1.2L petrol and powerful 1.5L diesel engine equipped with five-speed manual gearbox.
This will surely be a car with high quality interiors and top notch built quality. The only thing which remains to be seen would be the list of features and the rear leg room on offer because that is one of the biggest drawbacks in the Polo.
Honda Amaze Facelift
Compared to the sales figures of 2013, last year has been a bit disappointing for Amaze. Be it the focus shifting of its buyers to its elder sibling, City or the entry of new and stylish competitors equipped with all modern features; Amaze has seen a significant decline in its number of buyers. That is why Honda will be launching the facelifted version of Amaze which will see addition of some premium styling and comfort features and most importantly, the new Amaze will have more refined diesel engine.
Currently Amaze has the most powerful diesel engine in its class but the poor refinement and cabin insulation has constantly been the most criticized points of the Amaze. With the new Amaze, we can expect better sound proofing as seen in the new City and Mobilio. It will retain its 1.2L petrol and 1.5L diesel engine equipped with five-speed manual gearbox. The comfort features are likely to include new features such as push button start, Bluetooth connectivity and rear parking sensors.
Words- Nitesh Sharma