Hyundai India has resurrected and refurbished the long standing Accent name in the Indian market today with the launch of the all-new sub 4-metre compact sedan, the Hyundai Xcent. Until, now the compact sedan segment had been ruled by none other than India’s larger carmaker, Maruti Suzuki - courtesy of company’s flagship Swift Dzire. Other strong contender in the segment comes from the land of rising sun - the Honda Amaze, which debuted with Honda’s first-ever diesel power plant in India.
Hyundai Xcent on the other hand, has already created a lot of noise in the industry and we have no doubts that this newest compact sedan from the South Korean automaker will put up a tough battle against its rivals in order to grab a significant piece of the sales pie. We bring you a quick and crisp comparo between the newly launched Hyundai Xcent versus the Swift Dzire and the Honda Amaze.
Among the three competitors, we have to admit that its the Honda Amaze that seems to have been designed in tune with today’s generation, while at the same time does not look too ahead of its time either. The Xcent doesn’t look bad, but in front of the Amaze, it lacks lustre. The Maruti Suzuki Swift Dzire on the other hand, has a lot of catching up to do in the design and styling department.
Dimensionally, all three contenders are under 4-metres in length so as to qualify for the excise duty cut benefit. However, a detailed look at the size chart and it is evident that the Swift Dzire scores at the top in every aspect. It is the widest among the three compact sedans at 1,695mm, longest at 3,995mm and also the tallest in the class at 1,555mm. The Hyundai Xcent on the other hand, falls on the other end of the spectrum, while the Honda Amaze slots between the two.
The Hyundai Xcent is being powered by the 1.2-litre Kappa dual VTVT petrol unit and the three-cylinder 1.1-litre U2 CRDi diesel engine. The 1.1-litre U2 CRDi pumps out 72PS at 4,000rpm and 180.4Nm between 1,750 and 2,500rpm with a mileage of 24.4kmpl. The 1.2-litre Kappa petrol delivers 83PS of power 6,000rpm and 111.8Nm of torque with a claimed fuel efficiency of 19.1kmpl.
The Honda Amaze runs on a four-cylinder 1.2-litre petrol unit and a 1.5-litre diesel power plant. The Swift Dzire gets the K-Series 1.2-litre petrol engine and the 1.3-litre Multijet diesel engine.
In the engine department, its the Honda Amaze that takes the game with the highest power output figure among all three cars at 90PS for the petrol unit and 100PS in case of the diesel unit, followed by Swift DZire - making the Hyundai Xcent the least powerful in the class.
The Honda Amaze and the Swift DZire both get a 5-Speed manual as standard over all variants, while the petrol variants of both compact sedans are also being offered with an automatic transmission. The Amaze gets a 5-Speed automatic gearbox, while the Swift Dzire gets a 4-Speed tranny. The Hyundai Xcent on other hand, gets 5-Speed manual as standard and a 4-Speed auto as an option. The automatic delivers an ARAI test fuel efficiency of 16.9 kmpl.
This is one department that is tough for any automaker to beat a Hyundai car. Though all the three cars are more or less evenly matched in the features department, Hyundai as always has introduced some segment-first features such as the rear AC vents, push button start-stop system, the high-end two-din audio system with 1GB internal storage, cooled glove-box and steering-mounted Bluetooth controls. The Swift Dzire and the Xcent both offer automatic climate control AC, however the same is found missing in the Amaze. The Hyundai Xcent clearly, scores the most points in the features department.
With the prices of the Hyundai Xcent announced this afternoon, which starts at Rs 4.66 lakh and goes all the way up to 7.39 lakh, it is evident that the newest entrant in the compact sedan segment has hit the nail right and hard - targeting its arch rival Swift Dzire from an automaker who has always won the price war, be it any model. That said, it should be noted that the prices announced today are the introductory ones and will eventually, see a hike in the coming months once, the initially noise revolving the Xcent has subdued. Honda Amaze on the other, has now become the costliest of three compact sedans with prices starting at Rs 5.21 lakh and going all the way to Rs 7.78 lakh. (All prices are ex-showroom, New Delhi.)
Maruti Suzuki Swift DZire will always have the strong backing of the Indian consumer, thanks to the low cost of ownership and maintenance and not to mention the blindly trusted Maruti badge. The Honda Amaze comes at the top when it comes to performance, reliability and looks, but loses on the features front. That said, Honda does enjoy a cult following in the country and hence, enjoys solid backing from the performance enthusiasts. The Hyundai Xcent on the other hand, comes loaded with features, looks decent, comes with a wide range of petrol and diesel engined variants and so far, is the most economically priced. On the offside though, if you are in the market looking for a diesel powered compact sedan, then the Xcent might feel tad underpowered in front of the Amaze and the Swift DZire.