While the Go did not meet with success, Datsun struck the right chord with the Redigo and it has been doing decent numbers since its launch. We too love its crossover proportions and the unique styling while VFM it is of course. However with its sibling the Kwid getting the 1.0 and AMT, it was about time the Redigo got that too and finally we have the 1.0 Redigo so without wasting any time let us talk what is new.
Styling wise only the badge signifies change otherwise it is the funky styling that we like. It is unique and refreshing and stands out being also different from looking from the Kwid. It even has day time running lamps! Inside there is new black interior which looks much better now plus the dash of sliver on the steering and ac vents also add a bit of sportiness. There are also new fabric seats.
Equipment wise you miss out on few things like the touchscreen, Bluetooth on the Kwid but you get the basics like remote, central locking, audio system with MP3, USB, radio, shift up indicator, accessory socket, power windows, driver airbag etc. There are signs of cost cutting like the exposed metal inside but on the other hand, for such a small car it feels airy inside. Getting in and out is very easy and space at the back is excellent considering its class and you get plenty of headroom.
If you are tall the non adjustable driving position is a bit of an issue but that aside you get a raised driving position along with excellent visibility. So with its small size, placing it in traffic (4.7m turning radius) and squeezing past narrow gaps in easy. The main highlight is of course the more powerful engine. The 1.0 motor makes 67 bhp and 91Nm while official efficiency is 22.5 kmpl. We easily recommend this over the 800cc Redigo. It feels much more smoother and the extra power makes better use of the light and agile build of the Redigo. It is easier to drive in the city and more refined. The 185mm ground clearance is a big plus and it tackles bad roads much better than what its size suggests. Ride is decent. There is no auto at the moment and you have a 5-speed manual only.
There is no doubt that the 1.0 Redigo is the one to buy and we also expect it to be cheaper than direct rivals. Plus Datsun also offers very low ownership costs which is a big draw. Overall the 1.0 sure adds to the desirability of the car along with its funky styling, high ground clearance, practicality, space. Sure there are shortcomings but with its low ownership costs and now added punch, it does make a stronger case as a perfect first car.
Words- Sunil Kumar