Category Archives: Auto

Volkswagen Vento Facelift Review & Test drive

OVERVIEW ;

German car major Volkswagen’s Indian wing has launched the new refreshed 2015 Vento facelift. In its new facelift version, the quality sedan gets more stylish with a refreshed look. The Vento gets mainly cosmetic updates, and the most noticeable change is on its front face which comes in the form of new chrome grille borrowed from the new 2015 Jetta and new Passat. This stunning German sedan now comes with refreshed exterior and interior design and is available in the Indian car market in both petrol and diesel versions. The Volkswagen Vento is offered a wide choice of ten model trims. While there are no mechanical changes in the vehicle, it has been tuned to offer an enhanced fuel efficiency of up to 7.5 percent, is another welcome update. Get On Road Price of Vento in Carzprice

EXTERIOR AND LOOK ;

The Vento has always been known for its understated appeal. This sedan is preferred by all those who like minimalist styling. The front of the Vento looks premium while the side profile is pretty much simple without any overload of lines. The rear again has a very simple design. The previous Vento came with circular fog lamps while the facelift now gets rectangular lamps. The fog lamps also have an integrated cornering light function which comes in quite useful on dark corners or even tight ghat sections.

The cosmetic changes that appear on the 2015 Vento include a new bonnet, new bumper, new grille, redesigned front airdam, chrome strip on the front and rear bumpers, door handles with chrome trims, electrically folding ORVMs with LED indicators, new tail lights, chrome garnish on boot lid, chrome exhaust tip and a soft touch release button for the boot. We think Volkswagen has done a splendid job with this update and there seems to be no reason to complain. Upgrade to new Volkswagen Vento by exchanging your used car 

INTERIOR AND COMFORT ;

Talking about extra space and interior on the previous paragraph the dashboard received some new color theme which comes in the form of new Walnut Desert beige on the lower half of the dash while the top half has been finished in Piano Black which definitely looks good. While talking about rest of the interior well! Quite honestly nothing has changed much. The Vento still carries that same old flat bottomed steering wheel, while the dashboard also comes with a cooled glovebox which really comes handy.

Unfortunately the Vento comes with a comes with the conventional entertainment system while its rivals has moved to the touchscreen infotainments era. For the comfort of the rear passengers the Vento also gets rear AC vents and also space max technology which actually allows the rear passengers to adjusts the front seats (Co Driver) from the rear only making more leg room. The car also comes with a cruise control for easy drivability option. The rest of the features includes auto folding mirrors and an external boot release.

ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION ;

According to VW, the new Volkswagen Vento has a 7% more efficiency in fuel consumption, making it more competitive. We drove the Diesel – TDI with the 7-speed DSG (Auto) and the car again impressed us as it retains the same virtues of being a responsive and spirited performer. The gearbox though, has a certain initial lag. Also, what was noticed was that on releasing the brakes (in Drive mode), the car leaps ahead suddenly (forward or reverse) and one needs to be careful, especially in bumper to bumper driving situations.The suspension setup remains the same, offering a pliant ride and good overall composure, which is certainly a highlight of the Volkswagen Vento.

RIDE AND HANDLING ;

As for the braking, a robust set of ventilated disc brakes are fitted to its front wheels and the rear ones get sturdy drum brakes. Anti lock braking mechanism is also offered that not only boosts this mechanism but also prevents the vehicle from skidding. Meanwhile, the McPherson strut on front axle and semi-independent trailing arm on the rear one makes your journey in this sedan quite comfortable. This suspension system ensures the ride is smooth no matter how the road conditions are. On the other hand, with a speed sensing electronic power steering column, you can easily take turns besides having good control at both low and high speeds.

SAFETY SECURITY AND FEATURES ;

Primary safety equipment including dual front airbags, ABS, height adjustable head restraints in front & rear, electronic engine immobilizer, auto dimming IRVM, 3-point height adjustable seat belts in front & rear, rear fog lamp, front fog lamp with cornering lights and power windows with pinch guard function on all doors are available on the sedan. The DSG variants get some additional features like electronic stabilization programme and hill hold control. On the outside Vento gets key elements like halogen headlamps, chrome grille, 3D tail lamps and ORVMs with turn indicators. Cabin packs in a sporty flat-bottom steering wheel, leather wrapped gearshift knob, premium upholstery, cooled glove-box, multiple storage points, 12V power socket and foot-well lights.

CONCLUSSION ;

The Volkswagen vento surely is one worthy car to take on its competitor but it surely does lacks some of the modern amenities that its rivals provides take the touchscreen infotainment system as an example. But what it does provide is surely an impressive engine lineup with two petrol and diesel engine options which are not only fuel efficient but also comes with an automatic gearbox as well.

Jaguar XE Overview & Performance

OVERVIEW

The Jaguar XE is the British marque’s first full-bodied attempt at taking on the big German three in the compact luxury sedan game; a game that’s currently being dominated by the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, the Audi A4 and the BMW 3 Series. Designed by Ian Callum and underpinned by an all-new aluminium intensive modular platform, the XE is positioned as the most driver focused car in this class by Jaguar. And so the car on test here is a 200bhp plus, petrol version of the sedan. How does it do? We find out.

EXTERIORS AND STYLE

Jaguar XE has an agile look and is designed to make it a head turner when it is driven on the road. Jaguar XE features include a length of 4795mm and a width of 2075mm and come with body colored bumpers. The engine grill has a beautiful perforated design that is bordered with a chromium strip and the logo of the company inscribed in the middle. The headlight cluster is big and powerful and are equipped with halogen lamps for the Pure trim whereas, the Portfolio trim is equipped with bi-functional HID Xenon headlamps along with headlamp power wash function. To cool the powerful engine quickly, it has a big black color perforated air dam along with two black color air vents to dry the brakes. Looking at its side profile, you will notice silver encrusted air vents, body colored ORVM caps (with integrated turn lamps) and door handles along with uniquely designed fenders, which houses 17-inch silver alloy rims mounted by tubeless radial tyres. The rear profile of this car reinforces the athletic look of its front. Jaguar XE Colors available in the market include, Ebony Black and Polaris White. If you want more variety, then you have to pay for some other colors like Ammonite Grey, Blue Fire, British Racing Green, Dark Sapphire Metallic, Glacier White, Italian racing Red, Odyssey Red, Osmium Blue, Quartzite, Rhodium Silver, Ultimate Black, Black Cherry, Celestial Black, Ingot, Storm Grey, and Tempest Grey.

INTERIORS AND COMFORT

The sporty and understated design philosophy of the exterior has trickled down to the interiors as well. It shares some beautiful elements with the big daddy XJ like the ‘Riva Loop’ which is a continuous band of trim running around the dashboard and connecting the front doors. The dashboard itself sports a clean design with the touchscreen infotainment system taking centre stage. The AC controls are neatly laid out with buttons being of adequate size. Speaking of buttons, it is slightly disappointing to hear a click sound from many buttons. It robs away some of the premium experience and Jaguar could have used better buttons.

The overall interior quality is very good in the Jaguar XE. The front seats offer excellent support and are well cushioned. The rear seat is a little tight in terms of headroom for tall passenger owing to the sloping roofline but is otherwise very comfortable. The under thigh support and legroom is good for any passenger below 5’10”. However, a third passenger would not be comfortable due to the tall transmission tunnel and protruding rear AC vents.

The boot is very practical due to its flat and wide floor. The spare tyre is tucked away under the floor unlike the Mercedes C-Class and BMW 3-Series which makes all the boot space usable. The infotainment system is much improved over the previous iterations seen in other Jaguar cars but it still isn’t the best in trade. A very neat party trick in the Jaguar XE is the 360 degree camera which is the best we have ever seen in a car. It works very well to show the complete surroundings of the car and makes parking in tight spaces a breeze. The Meridian sound system will satisfy the audiophile in you by providing good music quality.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE

Now that Jaguar has released information on U.S. XE models, we now know what engines will be available in the U.S. market. The XE 25t comes with a turbocharged, 2.0-liter, four-cylinder – already seen in other Jaguar Land Rover vehicles — that puts out 240 horsepower 251 pound-feet of torque. For those diesel fans, the XE 20d delivers with a 180 horsepower, 2.0-liter diesel engine that also pushes 318 pound-feet of torque. The range topping model – the XE 35t – comes with a 3.0-liter, supercharged, V-6 that puts out a respectable 340 horsepower and 332 pound-feet of torque. With that kind of performance, zero to 60 mph takes just 5.1 seconds and top speed is limited 120 mph.

All three engines are mated to a ZF eight-speed automatic transmission, but the XE35t AWD is mated to the beefier 8HP70 transmission, while the RWD variant of the XE 35t, the XE20d and the XE 25t are mated to the 8HP45 transmission.

We’ve all known that AWD was coming to the new XE, but now we have confirmation of what XE models will be available with all-wheel drive. It won’t even be an option on the base XE 25t, but it will be available on the XE 20d and the V-6 powered XE 35t. Like the new XF and F-Pace, the AWD system uses a multi-plate wet clutch transfer case to transfer power to the front propshaft. When needed, the system can switch from full, RWD to AWD in just 165 milliseconds. This on-demand system allows for the steering to remain uncorrupted during normal driving maneuvers.

You may have noticed that there is no V-8 engine option, but give it time. Jaguar won’t let BMW, Audi and Mercedes have all the fun in the compact super-sedan range. Expect the same 5.0-liter supercharged V-8 from the other Jaguar models to find its way into a Jaguar XE R model in the next few years

RIDE AND HANDLING

The 2017 Jaguar XE could easily win you over once you turn its rotary transmission selector to Drive. It’s a car engineered for the driver who wants to feel the road through the steering wheel and the seat of the pants. While many cars, including the vaunted BMW 3 Series, have moved toward being more comfortable and isolating, the Jag XE doubles down on driving dynamics. The steering is exceptional, delivering consistent weighting and providing an impressive amount of feedback. You can feel what the car is doing.

Jaguar also knows how to tune a suspension, managing to maintain control around corners and feel perpetually composed yet still deliver a well-damped ride that soaks up bumps and never punishes you for its athleticism. This perception is even better when you choose the Advanced Dynamics Pack. Truthfully, you won’t notice a big difference between its standard and Dynamic settings, but the adaptive suspension’s ability to further improve upon ride comfort and handling is well worth the extra cost. Really, the XE could go up against the Cadillac ATS as the most engaging luxury sport sedan to drive right now.

Of course, the engine you select makes a difference. At this point we’ve only sampled the 35t’s supercharged V6. Like Jag’s supercharged V8s, the XE’s 340-hp engine upgrade delivers silky smooth, effortless power that is pleasantly different in character compared with those offered by competitors. The fact that it gets the same EPA-estimated fuel economy as the base 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder would certainly make us think long and hard about paying extra for the 35t. Of course, the presence of a diesel engine certainly makes the 20d the engine to get for those who prioritize fuel economy. If there is one disappointment from a powertrain perspective, it’s the unrefined automatic stop-start system that draws too much attention to itself.

SAFETY AND SECURITY

All XE versions come with automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and traffic sign recognition that shows the relevant speed limit on the dashboard. Front, side and curtain airbags (which cover the front and rear windows) are also standard, although it’s a shame that there’s no driver’s knee airbag and you can’t add rear side ’bags. A blindspot monitoring system and adaptive cruise control are available as optional extras.

Euro NCAP gave the XE 5 stars in its crash test, and drill down into the details and you’ll discover the XE scores well in the individual categories, outscoring the Audi A4 in all but child occupant protection.The standard tyre pressure-monitoring system warns you if you have a puncture, although you’ll have to pay extra for a space-saver spare tyre instead of an inflation kit. A full-size spare isn’t available.As you’d expect, every version comes with an alarm and an engine immobiliser to help fend off thieves, and you can add a vehicle tracker.

CONCLUSSION

The XE retains the Jaguar DNA be it for looks and styling, interior, power and agility. The only knick in the armour is no option for diesel engines as majority of the luxury car sales in India are for oil burner. Leaving that, we loved the XE. With this brand, you don’t just move away from the German badge but you even procure a fresh product that looks a lot more expensive than its price tag.

 

Tata Nexon Review & Transmission

OVERVIEW ;

After taking a marathon test of Indian buyers, Tata Nexon has finally made its way in the country. First things first, the Nexon marks Tata’s entry into the highly lucrative sub 4-meter SUV segment, and it is the fourth product after Tiago, Hexa and Tigor to be based on the company’s IMPACT design philosophy. Tata Nexon had its world premiere in concept form at the 2014 Auto Expo, while the production version saw the daylight a couple of years later at the 2016 Auto Expo. It is being presented in both petrol and diesel fuel trims in five grades: XE, XM, XT, XZ+ and XZ+ Dual Tone. The sub-compact SUV debuts several new comfort features in the Indian market, while paramount importance has been given to the safety of the occupants as well. Tata Nexon gets 1.2L Revotron petrol and 1.5L Revotorq diesel engines with 108bhp power, making it the most powerful in the segment. For the time being, it is offered with a manual transmission only, while the AMT gearbox is scheduled for a later stage. Check for review , features & price of Tata Cars

EXTERIOR AND LOOKS ;

Smashing! The Tata Nexon is one car that has stayed true to its concept roots. Everything including the stance and overall design language can be related to the concept. In fact, a few people in and around Kochi asked us if this is a prototype car that we’re driving around. The Impact Design, as Tata likes to call it, has been working quite well with all of its recent launches like the Tiago, Tigor and Hexa. The black honeycomb grille is a nice element with a chrome outline to it, flanked by the tear drop projector headlamps. These lights have a LED strip that doubles up as a DRL. Unlike the Brezza’s units, these cannot be switched off. The air intake too is large and above it, pushed to the sides are eyebrow-shaped enclosures that house the fog lamps. The lower part of this nacelle is a white ceramic sash which does its job quite well in bringing your attention to the car.

Moving on to the side, the coupe-like roofline looks really cool. The ceramic sash used for the fog lamps too has been used here for the rising belt line. The wheel arches aren’t unusually flared but house 16-inch wheels as standard. Tata Motors’ designers have used a bluish grey colour for the Elite i20-like floating roof. At the rear, the pinched lines create a harmonious effect to portray what will be one of the most attractive derrieres on any Indian car. The lower part of the bumper has a black diffuser, which is also shared with the Tiago and its derivatives.If only looks could sell, the Nexon will be a top seller. However, the Nexon doesn’t look like a true-blue SUV and instead feels like a hatchback on stilts. Remember the Vista D90 Xtreme concept? Get Ex Showroom Price of  Nexon

INTERIOR AND COMFORT ;

The Nexon’s interior has three prominent layers. The upper portion is finished in dark grey plastic, and its quality is on par with its peers. The middle layer gets an aluminium finish, and it looks particularly upmarket. The thickness and solidity of this layer throughout the cabin makes you feel like you’re sitting inside a more premium car. The third and the lowermost layer is a plastic of greyish shade of beige. This plastic is hard to touch, and the fit and finish levels aren’t too high either. For instance, the glovebox requires more than one attempt to shut, and the fit on the lower portion of the doors is questionable, especially around the door pockets. These two are probably the only touch points where fit and finish feels compromised. Otherwise, Tata has managed to do a good job of ensuring satisfactory quality levels at contact points. Sitting atop the Nexon’s dashboard is a 6.5-inch Harman infotainment system that’s fixed to the dashboard. There’s simply no missing it. More importantly, it feels high quality and well thought out. The display is crisp and readable even under harsh sunlight. It’s only the camera display that is a bit grainy. However, that must have more to do with the output of the camera than the screen itself.

The user interface is friendly and easy to use as it gets hot spots at corners for quick access to functions like air con settings, audio source and the mega menu. The touchscreen isn’t the most intuitive, and there’s a slight delay every time you operate it. However, it doesn’t skip inputs much. It’s quicker to respond when you use the physical buttons and knobs, which Tata has thoughtfully placed well within reach to operate on the go.Tata intends to offer Apple CarPlay at launch, and the test cars we drove only featured Android Auto. The driver side instrument binnacle is simple in terms of design and gets a multi-info display unit between the speedometer and tachometer. You get two trip meters, average fuel efficiency display, distance to empty and the usual readouts there.The centre console extends from under the central AC vents and goes all the way to the rear. Apart from the automatic climate control knobs, it houses a USB and an AUX port and the Drive Select knob as well. It also gets a pair of cup holders that can be shut with a Tambour door, which is a roller shutter that you see on some of the higher-end cars. Visually, it leaves you impressed. However, the cubby holes are an ergonomic failure: it’s too deep and crammed to be used for keeping and taking out cups. Move further behind, and there’s the armrest that opens up a small glove box with enough space to keep your smartphone and your wallet. This should have ideally been the place for having USB and AUX sockets. The centre arm stretches all the way to the rear cabin and houses air con blowers for the rear passengers.

The Nexon’s cabin is so comfortable that it deserves a special mention. To make things clear up front, the Nexon is a car best suited for four. And when we say that, it doesn’t mean that the cabin is not spacious, just that the rear seats are designed such. So, while you get a bench at the rear, the seats are properly contoured buckets for two passengers. There’s a central armrest which folds up in case you wish to seat a third passenger. But you wouldn’t want to do that unless you’re doing short distances.Other than that, the Nexon’s cabin appears to be one of the most comfortable cabins in the sub-4m vehicle category. The steering is adjustable for rake, the driver’s seat is height adjustable and provides excellent lower back support. So, it’s easy to get into a good driving position. The bucket seats are big enough to accommodate people of varied shapes and sizes, and the extra under-thigh support just makes things more comfortable. The same goes for the rear seats too. Think of the two seats at the back as captain ones (yes, they’re so well defined in terms of their design), and you sit snug into them. The seat back angle is such that it is set into comfort mode by default. The regions around lumbar and under-thigh have been given more cushion in comparison to the other places, and the seats just feel made-to-order.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE ;

The Tata Nexon will be offered with a new 1.5-litre, four-cylinder diesel engine and a 1.2-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine. Both engines come mated to class-first six-speed transmissions with power sent solely to the front wheels. Automated manual transmission (AMT)- equipped versions of the Nexon are under development and could be out by the year end.Tata’s new 1.5-litre direct injection turbo-diesel that also debuts on the Nexon puts out a healthy 110hp. A scaled-up, four-cylinder version of the Tiago’s 1.05-litre, three-cylinder diesel, the new engine fires easily with the first poke of the starter button. There is a bit of flutter at startup and some vibration is felt through the gear level but it settles down to a smooth idle. This motor is pretty refined even at higher revs and doesn’t make the same racket as the gravelly sounding 1.3 diesel in the Brezza.What’s immediately noticeable is how tractable the engine is; the Nexon pulls cleanly from as low as 1,400rpm. This tractability, due to the 260Nm of torque from 1,500rpm, makes driving in traffic quite easy and you don’t need to constantly downshift. Once you are past 2,000rpm, there’s a gentle wave of power and there’s no real spike like in the Brezza’s Fiat-sourced diesel. Post 4,000rpm, however, you hit a wall, and though the engine does rev to 4,500rpm, the drop in power at the top end is quite sudden.

Unlike the Brezza’s unit which pulls well past 5,000rpm, the Nexon’s 1.5 diesel feels quite laboured at high revs. In fact, the lack of top-end punch and an average mid-range leaves you wanting for more power, even with the drive mode in the most aggressive ‘Sport’ setting.The Nexon’s high kerb weight of 1,305kg (110kg more than the Brezza) also blunts its performance to a great extent, and overall, we felt the Nexon could do with more punch. In a quick reference test, not done to our test standards, the Nexon managed to do the 0-100 run in 13.75sec, which is slower than the Brezza, at 12.9sec.The Nexon’s three driving modes, Eco, City and Sport, each with their own power and torque figures, distinctly alter the performance characteristics and have an impact on fuel efficiency as well. Sport mode, quite obviously, is the nicest to use, especially when extracting every ounce of performance but in the normal or City mode, performance is good enough for relaxed driving. In Eco mode, the Nexon feels particularly strangled and is only to be used if you’re running out of fuel or have exceeded your fuel allowance.

RIDE AND HANDLING ;

The Tata Nexon comes with a dual path suspension and we must mention that it has been tuned very nicely. The suspension attacks potholes and bad roads with ease, without causing discomfort to passengers. The car remains pretty much stable even while going on broken patches at slightly higher speeds. The 16-inch tyres also have good grip levels. The steering is light at low speeds and weighs up nicely on the highways. It has decent feedback on offer and is pretty direct. Body roll isn’t much and I actually found the Nexon to be fun to drive. Braking power is good and ABS is standard across all variants.

SAFETY ;

The Nexon will come with a lot of standard safety equipment like dual airbags and ABS + EBD across the variants. It also gets ISOFIX hooks for child seats and height adjustable front seat belts.

CONCLUSSION ;

Well! The Nexon is the new generation product from Tata Motors which is quite refined and gets quality materials and plenty of new and exclusive features both inside and outside. It looks good and will attract everyone’s attention on the road. Rumors are that Tata Motors will price this new SUV quite aggressively as well. The Nexon gets both diesel and petrol engines under its hood which gives it an edge over its rival Vitara Brezza along with a 6-speed manual gearbox. Lastly for those who want a well built and premium quality interior with plenty of modern features and practicality can always opt for the Nexon

 

 

Audi Q7 Overview & Performance

OVERVIEW ;

Audi’s most celebrated model, ‘Q7’ has eventually shed its old skin to get into new attire. Embodying numerous overhauls, the premium SUV looks fresh, leaner and newer. The emphasis on newer clearly hints at the dissimilarity between current model and its predecessor. With almost all areas being revised, Audi has not left any parameter untouched. One of the most prominent changes made to the SUV is the trimmed dimensions that said, the length, width and height have been sliced considerably. Use of new components and a much lighter chassis courtesy MLB 2 platform has skimmed a substantial amount of weight from the new Q7. Styling changes on the exteriors blend with the leaner body. Most of the revamp job is done on front profile, with apt styling make over bestowed on side and rear. Tweaks made are extended to interiors too, implying Audi’s intent to endow Q7’s cabin with the best of what it can offer. Addition of new elements in the cabin lend an all new look, a couple of new features and an all new cockpit along with much spacious third row makes do for the chopped dimensions. Engine set up remains intact but there is a change in the state of power produced. The 3.0 litre, V6 diesel powerplant, eight-speed torque converter automatic gearbox and Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive system continue fulfilling mechanical duties. The boost in power output on the other hand works in favour of Q7, pumping up performance. The new edition is not just a smarter version but it is tuned to offer better off-road driving experience. Get On Road Price of Audi Q7 in Carzprice

EXTERIOR AND LOOK ;

Want to make a statement among your peers and that too with a dont-mess-with-me attitude; the Q7 shall do it with ease. There are some things that you should know or realise before getting the Q7 that it does not only occupy larger parking space but also inflates your ego to maximum.If it’s an Audi, it is all about the unmistakable large mouthed radiator grille and the Q7 too leaves no room of doubt but flaunts it with utter sheen. Wide and at the same time sleek headlights mark the front corners while twin gigantic air guide pockets occupy almost a major part of the bumper. The lower section gets a brushed aluminium finish scuff plate, just in case you take it adventure driving. Also, the upper lip of the air pockets have turn indicator LED strips. Apply car loan for Audi Q7 at Carzprice

I have personally preferred a white Q7 always as a lighter shade highlights every possible contour but this gun metal shade of metallic grey just kept me hooked to it. This particular shade makes it look formal, parked in a plush ambience underneath a corporate vertical and at the same time makes it suit a rugged rocky martian background, exactly how I chose to shoot it. The Sports package has also added 20” 10 spoke alloys, which come in a contrasting bright shade and for once they don’t make me wish it to be black as the stock version looks nice. Just to garnish the profile, it has brighter roof rails.Not that we have a disliking for clean cars but an SUV and especially a core masculine vehicle like this surely carries off some dirt with great style. The rear tail lights feature signature positioning of LEDs. A small change comes in the form of a mildly tweaked rear bumper with scuff plate. The oval exhaust pipes with a chrome finish are nicely scooped inside the rear bumper.

 

INTERIOR AND COMFORT ;

This 2016 version of Q7 has an improved cockpit design that is quite arresting. Its dashboard is refurbished and is housed with various new equipments. One of the most significant improvements is the new infotainment system featuring a high resolution touchscreen display. Meanwhile, it is incorporated with ergonomically designed seats, which are well cushioned and covered with Cricket leather upholstery. These are integrated with adjustable head restraints and individual arm rests as well. The front seats have electrically adjusting facility along with memory function that adds to the convenience level. It also comes with a large boot space, which can be increased by folding its rear seat and it comes with rear parcel shelf and trunk room light for easy access. The luggage compartment lid comes with electric opening and closing function. Then it has a 4-spoke, leather wrapped steering wheel with 14 multifunction keys mounted on it. There are also bottle holders present on front and rear doors. It has sun visors with both side illuminated vanity mirrors, which has folding function as well. The cruise control function maintains a steady speed on the highways as set by the driver. There are a couple of drink holders in front center console, while two in rear center arm rest and side panels. Apart from these, it is bestowed with all four power windows with driver side auto down function, automatically dimmed internal rear view mirror, speed limiter, velour floor mats, smoke package, ambient lighting, easy pack tailgate, temperature controlled cup holders and many other such aspects.

This model series has several advanced comfort features to ensure a fatigue-free traveling experience. It includes the advanced parking system plus for simplified parking and has an auto hold function that adds to the convenience factor. The advanced four zone deluxe automatic air conditioning unit with rear vents cools the cabin in no time and creates a pleasant ambiance. It electronically regulates the air temperature, rate of air flow and distribution to keep the ambiance pleasant. It also has separate temperature control for driver and front co-passenger and its controls are given on digital display. One of its most important feature is the Drive Select function that aids in adjusting the driving characteristics. Its pre-sense basic helps in networking the different vehicle systems that enables driving situations to be categorized and actions to be implemented for preventing occupants. The MMI radio plus featuring Bluetooth interface, Audi sound system and a 7-inch color display are other highlights. This SUV is also integrated with an advanced cruise control with brake intervention system that maintains the set speed constant, while dealing with obstructions ahead. Another interesting element is the panoramic glass sunroof that can be electrically operated. Besides these, it also has electrical sun blind for rear windscreen, driver information system, front center arm rest, electric luggage compartment cover, Audi phone box, and various storage compartments. All these features put together make it one of the most comfortable vehicle in its segment.

ENGINE AND GEARBOX ;

The new Q7 comes powered by an updated version of the older model’s 3.0-litre V6 diesel engine and also carries forward its eight-speed torque converter automatic transmission. And of course, there’s Audi’s Quattro all-wheel drive system too. The engine’s been made more efficient, quieter and more powerful. Peak power sees a jump to 245bhp from 241bhp and max torque is now a stronger 61kgm versus the older Q7’s 56kgm. All things being equal, the power and torque increments would have typically resulted in slightly better performance. But here, you get the additional benefit of the weight saving. Performance, as a result, is shockingly good. On a mildly damp surface, we managed a 0-100kph time of just 6.95 seconds and a sub-10 second time to 120kph. For the ‘standard’ version of a 5-metre-long, seven-seat luxury SUV, the numbers are just incredible. Just to put things in perspective, if you wanted such performance in the past, you’d need to opt for the 335bhp, 4.2-litre V8 diesel-powered Q7. See the performance table to know how close they are.

But it’s not only when you are driving at full throttle that the new Q7 and its powertrain feel special. Right from the time you prod the accelerator the first time, you’ll notice the big Audi feels more energetic, moves with more vigour and generally feels lighter on its feet than its predecessor did. There’s even greater urgency with the Drive Select system (it adjusts engine-gearbox responsiveness in addition to steering feedback and suspension settings) set to Dynamic. What’s more, the engine doesn’t make a song and dance about its newfound abilities. Refinement is superb and there’s rarely ever more than a cultured hum from the engine bay.

The gearbox that strives to keep engine revs as low as possible also deserves a mention here. What’s more, the gearbox also goes about its business with great fluidity, adjusts admirably well to sudden changes in throttle position and is responsive enough to tugs at the paddles. To really nitpick, I wish the gearbox didn’t shift up automatically at the mere sight of 4,600rpm, at least in ‘S’ mode. I also hope the gear lever that seems straight out of a luxury yacht is an option – it looks better than it is to use.

DRIVING DYNAMICS ;

The ride of the Q7 is plaint. It glides over potholes with ease and without filtering any of the road shocks into the vehicle. It feels a bit unsettled on bad roads at high speeds, and now I’m knit-picking. The handling is good, despite its dimensions. It is easy to drive but you do feel the size when driving in the city.

Now, to buy or not? The Q7 looks fresh, stylish and we loved the way it drives, and even the space it offers. The Q7 is certainly a lot better than the previous gen and certainly worth procuring. One of the best in ride and handling and features too. Audi has worked on the Q7, but the new generation feels more like a station wagon than an SUV/crossover. The dimensions haven’t shrunk, it is more of the design. But in terms of technology, this one has improved by miles. The new Q7 does stand out and it feels a lot more stylish too.

SAFETY ;

As expected from the four ringed badge, the Audi Q7 is loaded with safety features including eight airbags, ABS, ASR, EDL, ESC, Hill Descent Control and more such electronics. Audi has a good reach across the country with a wide network for a German luxury carmaker and it is further growing at a good rate. However, the cost of ownership and maintenance is not too light on the pocket since most of the parts are imported and if something goes wrong with the car, it takes a while at the workshop to replace/repair compared to the mass market carmakers in India.

CONCLUSSION ;

So to wrap up everything the Q7 definitely now is at par with its other competitors, it has shed lot of weight and now even has become more fuel efficient. For those who hated the bulky looks should definitely love the new and improved sharp looks of the new Q7. Inside too you get a new center console with lesser buttons which not only has made handling the MMI interface easier but kept the center console as well the dashboard clean. Under the hood you even get new engine options and moreover Audi too will add the e-tron variant soon to the lineup.The Q7 definitely has improved a lot compared to its predecessor and you definitely can get your hands on one.

Tata Sumo Review & Specifications

OVERVIEW ;

The Tata Sumo Gold is a utility vehicle by Tata Motors which comes in seven diesel variants. The variants are Tata Sumo Gold CX BS III, CX PS BS III, CX BS IV, CX PS BS IV, EX BS III, EX BS IV and GX BS IV. The Tata Sumo comes with a 2,956 cc diesel engine with a five speed manual transmission. In terms of safety, it comes with disc brakes in front with drum brakes at rear, collapsible steering column, side intrusion beam on all doors, engine immobiliser, central locking and keyless entry. Key features include body coloured bumpers, power steering, alloy wheels and music system with USB, AUX and Bluetooth.

EXTERIOR AND STYLE ;

The ever-masculine looking Sumo Gold underwent a minor facelift which gives it a broad and stable stance and the new body graphics sets it apart The Sumo Gold now stands with an imposing poise that shows off an aggressive front grille that gets a chrome lining where the word ‘Gold’ has been inscribed. The trapeziodal shaped headlamps come integrated with the turn indicators and it’s large size compliments the bold front fascia. It also comes with high powered fog lamps ensuring illumination while driving in the dark. The front bumper, rear view mirror and door handles are all body colored. Being a tall SUV, there are footpegs on the either sides for easier entry and exit for passengers. The rear comes with a new and prominent tail lamp cluster. Also rear fog lamps have been added and a spare wheel has been placed under the body. The wide 215 mm tubeless tyres cover the stylish rims and a high ground clearance of 182 mm completes the overall look of the Sumo Gold, keeping alive its macho appeal.

INTERIOR AND COMFORT ;

It is not one of those cars which will sweep you away with modern machinery and features to make your life easy but then it won’t make you complain either. Why?Step inside the cabin and it feels really roomy with its large proportions of room. The headroom and legroom is really comforting for the front row passengers. It remains the same for the second row except for the legroom which gets uncomfortable. No one dared to seat on the third row facing benches for long as the knees of the passengers kept hurting and the roll experienced while driving made them throw up.This one gets a new Kenwood music system with Bluetooth. It doesn’t look as impressive but then it functions impressively. It actually pairs phones easily and the same can also be used for Bluetooth telephony with a Mic embedded on the roof. The music system also offers multiple music adjustments which are effective as well. The speaker quality is not the best in the segment but compared to the below average units of the earlier model, this one feels nice.

ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION ;

The Sumo Gold comes plonked with a 3.0-litre CR4 diesel engine. This is the same block that also powered the Safari until 2007, however that injection was DiCOR. The CR4 is one of Tata’s recent additions to its technology, enhancing the performance and fuel efficiency of the engine. This engine produces 85bhp of power, compared to the DiCOR that was at 115bhp.The NVH levels are a tad higher than one would have liked. There is some amount of diesel clatter on idling and it’s louder on cold starts. Even the power delivery is linear as the engine produces about sufficient torque throughout the rev range. The gear lever is tall and this makes it difficult to shift, as even the shifts are a bit rubbery. The clutch is light and not tiring with constant usage in the city. All we wish that the vibrations on the gear knob when a bit lesser than what it is currently.

RIDE AND HANDLING ;

The Sumo Gold gets bigger wheels, a tough suspension, and a torquey engine. That gives it a good off-road performance, as long as you don’t sink the rear wheels into mud. Because being a rear wheel drive vehicle, the Sumo Gold can’t do anything if the wheels that are being powered get stuck. Being an UV, and a good one at that, the main purpose of the vehicle is to travel on and sometimes off road, which the Sumo Gold does well. Its on-road manners are acceptable, and so are its abilities in tackling bad road conditions. The soft suspension and high profile 15-inch wheels adorn the vehicle with a comfortable ride. But it still suffers from body roll and is better off when not driven aggressively around corners.

SAFETY FEATURES ;

It is disappointing to see that Tata hasn’t spent time improving upon this aspect. This is one of the main reasons why that Sumo is losing out to other rivals. Tata has provided the Sumo Gold with the following limited safety features like:

– Door ajar warning – Seat belt warning – Front and rear fog lamps – Side intrusion beams for all the doors – Rear high mount stop lamps.

The absence of ABS and EBD in the SUV is felt and also there are no airbags for the occupants at the front or the rear. Tata Motors should have at least provided the airbags for the safety of the passengers.

CONCLUSSION ;

The Sumo Gold is placed in a market segment that has never seen much of glamour. It’s either the MPVs and compact SUVs, midsize sedans or the full blown SUVs that are generally more glorified, and portrayed as the desirable vehicles. Blame it on the positioning but UVs aren’t seen as the most luxurious vehicles. They have a purpose and that’s to ferry people, above everything else.Amidst all that, the Sumo Gold tries to make its presence in the market. So, if your commute requires traveling on bad roads, and you need ample space inside the vehicle, the Sumo Gold is a good option. The top-spec GX is recommended.

 

Merecedes Benz GLS Class Review & Specifications

OVERVIEW ;

In order to strengthen its SUV portfolio, Mercedes- Benz, a well known German Luxury auto brand introduced the petrol derivative of GLS SUV. Priced at INR 82.90 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi), the consumers can now choose between petrol and a diesel version for the GLS SUV. Earlier, the German brand introduced the diesel version of the SUV only. With company’s strategy to introduce the petrol variants for its all models in the country, the petrol derivative of GLS SUV is the eighth car to roll out from the house of Mercedes-Benz India. Mercedes Benz’s biggest SUV, GL-class now gets a fresh GLS class badge along with a refreshed makeover for the 2016 model with minor exterior and interior updates. The new and rebadged version is known as Mercedes Benz GLS class according to the new adopted nomenclature by the company. This new 7-seater SUV features modernized exteriors along with luxurious cabin developed to proffer luxury as well as best in class safety. Check for  specifications,features & price of Merecedes Benz GLS Class

EXTERIOR AND STYLE ;

The most obvious change is at the front with the GLS getting a new face. The highlight is the change to full-LED, adaptive headlights that look like the ones on the S-Class. Other changes include a more rounded, muscular twin-slat grille; as also a redesigned bumper and hood that add more pizzazz to the SUV’s personality. Changes at the rear are limited to a revised bumper and full-LED tail lights which look similar to the predecessor’s from a distance. The intricate design of the headlamp and tail lamp units is no less than that of a jewel though, and it is something that’s worth taking a closer look at.

Goes without saying, the GLS looks a lot more appealing. It’s a design that will make you soak in the details – there’s a sense of familiarity to the face, though it is more muscular and well-toned, the way SUV’s should look. What gets your attention from the sides is the enormous length. At over fivemetres long, the GLS is one of the biggest SUVs in the country, and is longer and wider than a lot of other full-sized luxury SUVs. Upgrade to new Merecedes Benz GLS Class by exchanging your used car 

INTERIORS AND COMFORT ;

More changes are visible inside the cabin, where Mercedes added a new three-spoke steering wheel in Nappa leather, an instrument panel with Media Display, and a center console with touchpad control. The ambient lighting comes in three color shades and Mercedes now offers an available air ionization system.

Connectivity and infotainment are provided by the company’s latest generation of Comand Online, which includes an eight-inch color display and an intuitive touchpad. The optional “Mercedes connect me” service adds the Standard Services package with automatic emergency call, Accident Recovery and breakdown assistance, and after-sales service. There’s also the Remote Online services, which allow access to vehicle information from anywhere at all times, including the status of windows and doors, mileage, and tire pressure.

Those looking for a bit of exclusivity can choose between trim elements in Black Piano Lacquer or a variety of woods, as well as five leather upholstery color combos in Black, Ginger Beige/Espresso Brown, Saddle Brown/Black, Crystal Grey/Black, or Ginger Beige/Black. There’s also a Designo Exclusive package with heated front seats, Nappa leather, and diamond quilting. For the first time, the GLS gets an AMG Line interior with sports seats in Exclusive Nappa leather, a sports steering wheel in black Exclusive Nappa leather, instrument dials in a Checkered flag look, and brushed stainless steel sports pedals with rubber studs.

Legroom, headroom, and shoulder room remained unchanged with the facelift, but that’s far from bad news, as the second-generation GL was know to boast an outstanding level or roominess in all three seat rows.

ENGINE AND GEARBOX ;

Apart from the cosmetics, the only other change in GLS compared to the GL is the new nine-speed dual-clutch transmission. It has the same 3.0-litre six-cylinder diesel engine, producing 258bhp and 620Nm of torque and carrying the ‘350 d’ badge of the boot lid. This isn’t the most refined engine, there is clatter but hardly any of it percolates into the cabin.Despite the similar power figures, the car performs much better with the two additional ratios. It is a quick gearbox, immediately responding to a tap on the paddle shifters, however, it does act slightly confused in cities when left to choose on its own. In comfort mode, the gear shifts come at around 1,600rpm unless there is extra pressure on the accelerator pedal. The drivability for an SUV of this size is commendable, it builds momentum quickly, downing a gear or two if required.

There are a few other modes, most important being the Sport Mode, that makes the steering heavier, gear shifts sharper and the ride stiffer. It has airmatic suspension that can be tuned for comfort or sporty ride, plus it can raise the car height thereby offering better ground clearance for off-roads. The other modes are for snow / slippery conditions and off-road, which reduce the throttle response to offer better traction in harsh conditions. The individual mode allows you to separately adjust the engine response, steering and suspension set up.For a car that weighs close to 2.5 tonnes and is mainly intended to be a luxurious people carrier with a diesel engine, the GLS 350d is decently quick to reach 100kmph from standstill in 8.3 seconds. It has decent drivability as well with ample of low end torque, getting to 80kmph from 20kmph in 4.8 seconds. The GLS is not intended to be pushed around the corners, but should the need arise, the GLS does better than expected from an SUV of its size. The steering has decent feedback and brakes that manage to bring it to a halt quick enough.

RIDE AND HANDLING ;

Compared to the GL-Class, the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class benefits from suspension refinements that provide a more controlled, confident feel in corners. Nonetheless, it retains the quiet interior and absorbent ride over bumps for which the GL was known. Braking performance was a strong suit for the GL, and we expect it to remain one for the GLS, which stops with the drama-free ease of a much smaller vehicle.We’re a bit disappointed with the lack of real-world oomph from the diesel-powered GLS350d, especially given its prodigious torque rating, but the other three engines pour on the performance in increasingly concentrated doses. The GLS450 is a fleet SUV in its own right, but the V8-powered models practically redefine what’s possible for a large crossover with their effortless acceleration.

SAFETY ;

Standard safety features on the 2017 Mercedes-Benz GLS-Class include automatic crosswind stabilization, trailer stability assist, front side airbags, a driver knee airbag, full-length side curtain airbags, a forward collision mitigation system with automatic braking and a driver attention/drowsiness monitor. Also standard are a rearview camera and a five-year subscription to mbrace Connect (includes Mercedes-Benz roadside assistance).

CONCLUSSION ;

Mercedes-Benz GLS series is a solid, vast and spacious model that boasts of its unbeatable style and superior internal and external features that make it a luxurious series. The latest model of the GLS comprises of highly advanced technology and unseen functions that enhance driving quality and experience.

 

Merecedes Benz CLA Class Review & Specifications

OVERVIEW

The Mercedes CLA is an entry-level sedan offered by the Stuttgart-based automaker. The CLA was first launched a couple of years back and it is based on the A-Class. The sedan is one of the best looking cars out there in the market and now the automaker has given it a minor update as part of a mid-life facelift The Mercedes CLA is known to be one of the most aerodynamic cars. The vehicle has sporty dynamics and while it isn’t targeted towards families or people looking for rear seat space, the CLA makes for a smart choice for the millennials. Check price of Merecedes Benz cars in Carzprice

EXTERIOR AND DESIGN

A coupe like looks with futuristically rounded tail lamps & frameless doors had always been one of the strong points for Mercedes CLA ever since its launch. The long swooping bonnet merging into the neatly flowing roof line at the rear renders an impeccable silhouette for the most stylish car on offer in the segment. The classic Mercedes emblem resting snugly on sloping bonnet along with a large three pointed star on the grille creates a nice identity statement for the brand.

One look at the side profile & you cannot miss the beautifully crafted doors with smooth flowing folds lines that define the bold character for the car. Get On Road Price of Merecedes Benz CLA Class in Carzprice

Like the exteriors, you will find a lot of similarity with the Mercedes A Class. The retro sporty style AC vents with a large dia shouts out loud on the dashboard & is one of the most noticeable design touches on the interior. 2017 CLA also comes with a refreshed dashboard insert with a new colour & a rich texture adding a pinch of luxury premium to the interiors.

INTERIOR AND SPACE

Inside a Benz, there are some things that you can take for granted like luxury, comfort and amazing fit and finish of trims. The CLA too follows the same tradition of delivering one of the finest interiors seen in a luxury compact sedan.

It looks visually more appealing than an Audi A3 as the complex lines of the dashboard paired with the mix of use of aluminium, soft touch leather and soft touch buttons make it feel expensive. The front dashboard, like the A-Class, borrows many elements including the air con vents and instrumental styling from the higher models thus making its customer feel connected with the brand.

It comes with sporty seats for the front as well as rear passengers. Unlike the hot seats in the CLA45AMG, these seats are comparatively more comfortable. The front zone can accommodate fairly tall passengers provided they are not too keen on moving their knees around. The rear passengers are not in for any joy as the sloping rear roofline will be an obstacle always especially if the car is being driven enthusiastically. While the rear passengers do get a door handle on top to hold, the front co-passenger doesn’t get one.

The other issue being that of the front view getting completely blocked by tall front seats. It gets individual rear seats which can seat only two occupants in comfort and leaves a remote possibility of squeezing one more provided he agrees to sit in between with a folded central armrest to his back support.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE

;We are test-driving the CLA 200 here and mechanically, the car is unchanged from before this refresh. Under the hood is the same 1991cc, four-cylinder turbo-petrol with a power rating of 184hp and maximum torque of 300Nm. The engine is quite responsive and generally quick off the line, with barely perceptible turbo lag. It spins quite freely and propels the car into three-digit speeds without breaking a sweat. It is mated to a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic gearbox which complements the car’s sporty orientation rather well.

Press the accelerator sedately and the gearbox skips through the ratios rather quickly to maximise efficiency and minimise engine noise. In fact, the upshifts, under such gentle driving, are more or less seamless. Slam the gas hard, though, and you will see the speedo needle spin to the redline (in Sport mode) before the gearbox shifts up. It transforms from a sedate background worker to a frontline soldier almost immediately. It is so eager and aggressive that it will gladly downshift two ratios at a time if it senses urgency in your foot flexing. And if you’re still not satisfied, all you need to do is tug at the paddles behind the wheel to take control (or at least most of it) of gear shifts.

The engine is mostly refined, though it does become progressively more vocal with rising revs; mind you, this is not a complaint, because its snarl is rather satisfying. The different engine modes – Comfort, Sport and Eco – mainly alter the engine and gearbox response.

RIDE AND HANDLING

While the engines are powerful enough for the segment, it is the transmission that takes the cake. The 7G-DCT dual-clutch gearbox combines the comfort of a 7-speed automatic transmission with the driving dynamics of a manual, and is perfectly aligned to the power output of these engines. The gearbox consists of two sub-transmissions—one transfers the tractive power to the wheels while the other preselects the next gear, leading to quick, smooth shifts. Book test drive for Merecedes Benz CLA Class in Cazprice

The ground clearance of 165 mm ensures the CLA won’t scrape most speed-breakers found on our roads. But while the ride quality is good, on bad roads the CLA turns a little nervous; however, the ride quality never goes harsh. The car behaves its best on smooth roads and cornering even at high speeds is a lot of fun. Braking is spot-on.

SAFETY

Being a Mercedes, there are a host of safety features. You get attention assist (which monitors the steering behaviour of the driver, recognises signs of drowsiness and warns accordingly); automatic headlamp; ABS; electronic stability; tyre pressure monitor; reverse camera; and six airbags.

CONCLUSSION

The Indian introduction of the Mercedes Benz CLA has been a highly anticipated one. The good news is, the CLA doesn’t disappoint. It is good looking, well put together and premium and luxurious for its class. It’s well specced too, and honestly, it isn’t too bad a drive; the petrol for sure isn’t. So, is it worth buying? Yes, it is! And should you also consider it over all else in the same price bracket? Well, now that’s a difficult one because if it’s value you want, there are clearly better options. But, if it’s a badge you want to flaunt and feel good about, yes, the CLA is just the ticket.

 

Renault Lodgy Overview

INTRODUCTION ;

The Lodgy MUV is Renault’s attempt at making a mark in the premium seven-seater segment that is being ruled by the Toyota Innova for more than half a decade now. Where most of the Innova’s rivals failed for reasons like brand value, ownership cost, ‘taxi image’ and even looks, we try and find out if the Renault Lodgy stands a chance with the claimed modern underpinning, better performance and extra cabin space.

DESIGN ;

Instead of a in your face profile, it gets a rather smooth design on the front with petite headlights just around the front corners with a strong chrome line forming the hood lip joining both the headlights. The twin slat grille flows horizontally around the solid Renault logo placed at the centre. The front bumper gradually flows out from the headlight giving it a car like design. It also gets a two tone finish with the lower portion finished in matte also forming an air splitter and fog lamps housing. The chrome touch given all over looks decent.

The uniformly straight flowing roofline makes it look like a typical family carrier but at the same time it looks way better than Nissan Evalia and Chevrolet Enjoy. Large windows for all three rows make it look impressive as well as serve for a roomier feel inside the cabin. The wheel arches gets a subtle flair and the 185/65 R15 tyres with five spoke solid alloys suit the large contours. To make sure the silhouette doesn’t look drab, the Lodgy gets crease lines on front and rear sections. There are chrome protectors on the lower section.

The rear quarter view looks as impressive as the front quarter with swollen sections and solid profile. The fish tail styled tail lamps is a nice attempt to distract from otherwise boring looking tail door. It gets roof mounted brake lamps and a large rear windshield. There is again solid chrome above the number plate area as well as on the lower section of the tail door. Overall, the rear profile looks clean and scores more points than many other MPVs excluding the Honda Mobilio, which has the best tail door design.

CABIN ;

Now this is where the Renault Lodgy really comes into its own. It is nearly 4.5 metres in length, it has a reasonably high roof, and it isn’t exactly short on width like the Honda Mobilio or the Maruti Suzuki Ertiga. So interior room on the Lodgy is fantastic. Be it leg or elbow room at the front; knee, shoulder and head room in the second row; or even the knee and shoulder room in the third row; the Lodgy has enough and more all round. This one is a proper seven seater even when you consider adults.

But this is true only for the version that gets a bench in the second row; officially classified as an eight seater. Renault says the Lodgy can seat three in the last row, and so we tried. But unless all three are size zero adults, it’s an uncomfortable squeeze. For two, it’s great. Flexibility to haul luggage though is just as Renault claims. With all seats in place, there’s enough space for small sized suitcases (over 200 litres). With the last row folded, the Lodgy can easily gobble up weekend luggage for five. And when you throw out the last row and fold the second, you can literally move houses with this car.

Now, this is the top of the line RxZ trim. The Lodgy will also be available in the mid level RxL and the entry level RxE trims, the detailed feature list for which will only be revealed later. For the RxZ, its interiors might look different from the one on the Duster, but there’s still a lot of parts sharing here. The steering wheel, the front aircon vents, the gear shifter as well as buttons and knobs be it for the aircon or the power windows or even the ORVMs, are all from the Duster.

The touchscreen multimedia system is taken from the Duster as well. So, the overall quality levels though not all that great, still suffice. But not having climate control or ORVMs with turn indicators is a miss. The Renault Lodgy in the RxZ trim also gets steering column mounted audio controls, Satnav, and aircon vents for all three rows besides ABS and front two airbags on the safety front.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE ;

The Lodgy is powered by the same tried and tested 1.5-litre dCi diesel engine, carried over from the Duster, offered in two states of tune – 110 PS/245 Nm and 85 PS/200 Nm. It won’t come with the 1.6-litre petrol engine though. The 1.5-litre oil burner is a gem of an engine that we have tested in various cars before. It is quite a refined motor with stellar NVH levels, fuel efficiency and tractable power. The engine behaves the same in the Lodgy, pulling the MPV in a strong yet linear fashion. There is the typical turbolag under 2000 RPM with the 110 PS version, which is not present in the 85 PS version. The car has a punchy mid and top-end power that makes it a confident highway performer. The diesel clatter is not intrusive in the cabin but gets a little vocal near the redline that comes at 5000 RPM.

The 110 PS Lodgy is mated to a 6-speed manual transmission while the 85 PS gets a 5-speed gearbox. Gear shifts are smooth and slick but the 110 PS has a heavy and snappy clutch, which can get annoying in stop-go traffic. 100km/hr in the 6th gear sees the needle ticking around 1900 RPM, which makes cruising quite relaxed. The 110 PS version does the 0-100 km/hr sprint in 12 seconds with a top speed of 170 km/hr and the 85 PS does it in 13.3 seconds having a top whack of 163 km/hr. The French automaker claims that it has the best acceleration and top speed in its category. The ARAI fuel efficiency figures for the 110 PS and 85 PS Lodgy are 19.98 km/l and 21.04 km/l respectively, take them with a grain of salt though as real world mileage will be at least 4-5 km/l lesser.

DRIVING DYNAMICS ;

We only had the 110PS being offered to us for the test drive. The engine is familiar and its torquey performance straight away feels like the right match for the Lodgy. Both in city traffic and highway speeds, there is more than enough juice from the engine to make use of. There is a bit of lag, but once the needle passes the 1,400-1500rpm level, dollops of torque kick in. We are not sure, how responsive the engine would feel in its 85PS avatar, especially if the Lodgy would be fully loaded with people and luggage.

SAFETY ;

The Renault Lodgy has got only three star safety rating from Euro NCAP and that too for the international model having 6 airbags as standard. Renault will be offering the Lodgy in India with only dual front airbags, which is a big letdown. It will also get ABS, EBD with brake assist. Apart from cruise control, the MPV will come with a speed limiter as well. Renault currently has a network presence of more than 157 facilities across India. In order to get volumes and provide better after sales service, the French automaker needs to ramp up their presence, which they say they are doing through the year and claim it to be the fastest ramp-up by an automaker in India

CONCLUSSION ;

Renault seems to have wiggled into a sweet spot in the crowded MPV market with the Lodgy. It blends space, comfort, good driving dynamics and strong performance into a convincing package. As a family car, this MPV is hard to beat. It makes for a happy companion, especially on holidays, thanks to its unmatched cruising ability and long fuel range. It’s not all perfect though. The quest to liberate as much room as possible has made the Lodgy a touch too boxy, which could be a deal breaker for some. Also, at Rs 11.79 lakh for the top-end RxZ 110 diesel, it is on the pricier side. However, you do get a fair bit for your money, which makes the Lodgy reasonable value too. The only real issue is, Renault’s service network doesn’t as yet cover the entire length and breadth of the country. But the Lodgy’s proven mechanicals, which are shared by the Duster, should give owners peace of mind.

Maruti Suzuki Ciaz Overview & Performance

OVERVIEW ;

The C-segment sedan space is one of the most competitive so much so that there are eight cars fighting for volumes, the ninth to join is the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz. We recently pitched all the eight C-segment cars against each other and it was amply clear that the top three in the shootout had a lot more to offer. India’s largest car maker is a master in offering more for less as so evident from a majority of its products but can the Ciaz break all moulds to become a success considering Maruti Suzuki’s image as a big car maker isn’t much to talk about. While this Maruti sedan is off to a good start in the Indian market, does the Ciaz have what it takes to rub shoulders with well established rivals and maintain the volumes?

EXTERIORS ;

This perception change can only happen with upmarket, elegant exterior styling. The good news for Maruti fans is, the Ciaz most certainly looks like an expensive car. The large head lamps, the in-your-face chrome grille and the stylised bumper give the Maruti Ciaz an air of richness. The profile dominated by the strong shoulder line that runs from the front fender all the way into the tail lamp along with those nice looking 16 inch wheels lend the Maruti Ciaz an elegant but youthful stance. The blacked out B-pillar helps, as does the stretched feel for the panels. Check for features & price of Maruti Suzuki Ciaz

At the rear, the tail lamps are clearly inspired by the new Honda City, but the Maruti still manages to look more rounded. The rear bumper, like the one at the front, is well styled and lends the Ciaz a hint of aggression. The chrome strip on the boot lid further enhances the sedan’s appeal.

INTERIORS ;

The interiors of the Ciaz are completely new and different from any other Maruti car. The neatly laid out dashboard has a seven-inch touchscreen system. The higher variants get automatic climate control. The steering is shared with other models but it gets a leather wrap as also the gear knob. The top variant gets leather upholstery also. The Ciaz is comes loaded with features like push button start, keyless entry, bluetooth connectivity, navigation, reverse parking camera and sensors.

The Ciaz is not stingy on spacious too. There is good head room and leg room available. The seats are not the best but provide good comfort. It could have done with some more under thigh support. The boot is large and can fit in quite a lot of luggage with ease. This makes it a very practical sedan that can be used for weekend getaways too. The Ciaz S offers all black interiors and even the centre console has grey chrome finish on it.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE ;

While the Ciaz doesn’t get an entirely new motor, it does get a fairly reworked version of Maruti’s own K14 petrol unit found on the Ertiga. The tweaks to the engine focus on improving driveability and maximising fuel economy. To achieve that, Maruti has modified the cylinder head to raise the compression ratio from 10:1 to 11:1 and the revised head design allows for a better tumble of airflow at low speeds. Also, the air inlet track has been lengthened to further improve low-end torque. To counter heating problems and engine-knocking, issues that are typically associated with higher compression motors, long reach spark plugs and a more efficient oil pump have made their way into the motor. Despite all these changes though, peak power and torque figures have pretty much stayed the same.

On the face of it, the petrol version doesn’t come across as enthusiastic since a power output of 91bhp (at 6000rpm) is a pretty ordinary number for a mid-size sedan. However, in-gear timings are good – the Ciaz is pretty responsive and has a nice urgency about town. The engine pulls quite well from

low revs and you don’t have to work the gearbox much; and even when you do, the light clutch and slick shifting ’box (albeit not as nice as the Swift’s) takes away the effort from city driving. But find an open stretch and explore the K14 motor’s powerband, and you soon realise the power delivery is pretty flat. The mid-range isn’t particularly strong; this engine doesn’t like to be spun hard and gets pretty noisy as the tachometer closes in on its modest 6,200rpm redline.

Flat-out performance is fairly decent, with the dash to 100kph taking 12.02 seconds. However, it’s the unenthusiastic way the Ciaz picks up speed that makes you feel that it’s not as quick as the numbers suggest.

SAFETY ;

Maruti doesn’t offer airbags and ABS as standard on the base V variant of the Ciaz but the other three variants are equipped with these safety features. It is the least equipped car when compared to its immediate rivals, the Hyundai Verna and Honda City in terms of safety. The Verna gets ABS standard across all variants while its range topping variant gets 6 airbags. The City comes with both ABS and airbags as standard on all its variants. The Ciaz hasn’t been crash tested yet by the Global NCAP but considering the low weight of the car (despite being the biggest car in segment) compared to the rivals, we believe the structural strength might not be up to the mark. When it comes to after sales service, Maruti is second to none and has the biggest dealership network in the country by a mile.

DRIVING DYNAMICS ;

Now if you like driving, the Ciaz might not be the car for you. It has a precise steering and you eventually learn how much steering input to dial in but it isn’t great on feedback. It just isn’t in the same league as the Volkswagens and the Skodas. But, if you are looking for a comfortable long distance cruiser, you will like the Ciaz’s easy nature. Good straight line stability and potent braking, is of course an added plus.

The Maruti Ciaz rides well too. It has been setup for comfort over all else and it’s evident in the way the car rides. It’s softly sprung, so at slow speeds and over broken roads, it remains comfortable. However, at higher speeds and particularly over undulating roads and with load, the Maruti Ciaz does tend to wallow.

VERDICT ;

The Ciaz is backed by the large dealer and service network of Maruti Suzuki, looks good, delivers good efficiency numbers and starts at a price tag of Rs 7.73 lakhs. Has an optional AT variant, petrol engine and a number of variants whose prices go all the way up to Rs 10.5 lakhs (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi).

In our books, Maruti Suzuki has come a long way than being a manufacturer that’s known for being cost efficient and deliver good fuel efficiency. The company still delivers on those promises and so much more.

If you are looking for a sedan in the sub-10 lakh segment, then the Ciaz is definitely worth a shot.

Volvo S 90 Overview,Price & Transmission

OVERVIEW

Volvo’s S90 saloon is the brand’s follow up to the XC90, an SUV that inspires great interiors, technology, and safety.This saloon is an entirely new car that’s based on the same scalable platform architecture (SPA) which is seen beneath the XC90 and will compete against segment contenders like the Mercedes-Benz E-Class and BMW 5 Series. Though it felt right to launch the XC90 at a time when SUV sales are on a high, challenging established brands for a contention in the large luxury saloon space takes a lot of courage and determination.

EXTERIOR AND LOOK

The Volvo S90 comes with a multi-slat grille finished in rich chrome and on either side are the sharp headlamps with the Thor’s Hammer LED DRLs which are shared with the XC90. The front looks very dominating and the road presence is simply unmatched. The side profile is neat and the body line flows along flawlessly. The S90 comes with standard 18-inch alloys. The company also offers larger wheels, some of which look elegant while some look sporty. Moving to the rear, the design seems like a mixed bag. The tail lamps come with a C-shaped design and the boot lid has Volvo written on it. The number plate is placed on the bumper, thus giving the S90 a bit of a different look as compared to other sedans in the same segment. On the whole, the S90 is definitely a looker. While the Mussel Blue shade on our test car makes it look elegant, Volvo also offers a bunch of other colours which are equally premium-looking. For Price details of Volvo check out in Carzprice

CABIN AND SPACE

The Volvo probably has the best interior ever designed for a sedan. The simplicity of design and attention to detail has been carried over from the exterior to the cabin as well. Yes, it shares a lot with the cabin of the XC90 but has its own character. The dash looks like it’s made from a single piece and an aluminium accented line runs the length of the dash. There are ample wood inserts in the cabin that give an already exquisite cabin a richer feel. Even the stitching on the upholstery is of the highest quality and immediately grabs attention. The front seats are the same slim seats as on the XC90 and so is the 9-inch touchscreen infotainment system which can even be used with the gloves on. Then there is the technology and not just cutting edge safety tech but comfort features as well.

The S90 comes with the same slim seats that grace the cabin of the XC90 and are fully adjustable. There is a small lever attached to the lumbar support knob that lets you access the seat settings on the infotainment system. It allows you to set the wing support, squab length and lumbar according to your preferences. The driver’s perch itself is extremely comfortable with great visibility all round. The flat bonnet up front doesn’t interfere with the vision despite you sitting quite low in the car. After you’re done fiddling with your seat you can get on with the HUD or the heads up display which also comes with a number of settings and you can choose what you would prefer it to display for you. In our case I went for map directions and of course speed.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE

Volvo’s all-aluminium twin-turbocharged 2.0-litre diesel has already proven itself a willing motor in the XC90 and it feels the same in the S90 despite being in a lower D4 tune. But this aluminium motor doesn’t make the best first impression, as it settles into a gravelly idle. Even on the move you can’t get away from the fact that there is a diesel motor under the hood. It does quieten a bit once on the move though and the healthy 187bhp feels adequate for this 1.8 tonne vehicle. It delivers power in a smooth, linear manner and it has a lot of elasticity too. Thanks to the peak torque of 400Nm, there’s plenty of grunt right from the beginning and it pulls strongly to about 4000rpm post which the power tails off. Thanks to the gear ratios that are closely stacked on the 8-speed auto, the motor never feels out of breath and a tall 8th gear makes it good at cruising too. In Eco mode, the gearbox upshifts as quickly as possible and the car coasts as soon as you go off throttle to save fuel. In Comfort, the car behaves similarly albeit with a slightly better response from the gearbox and the engine. Although you never feel the need for extra grunt in these two modes the gearbox does feel a bit lethargic to downshift as it pauses for a second before deciding which gear to engage. In Dynamic though it becomes much more responsive, but also tends to put the engine in the upper reaches of the rev range, resulting in lot of engine noise.

DRIVING DYNAMICS

The S90 glides over rough sections silently and hint of wallow. Large holes, however, do result in a sharp thunk, especially at the front and it does shudder a bit over particularly bad patches. Unlike in most cars, however, Volvo has judged the dynamic mode really well and even in this mode the ride is comfortable and useable. It’s not hard-edged or bone jarring and in fact, at higher speeds we preferred this setting as body movement is kept well in check and it delivers a flat ride. The S90 is quite adept at shrink-wrapping itself around you as it feels very manoeuvrable and it feels no bigger than an S60 from behind the wheel. The wide 245 section bespoke Pirelli tyres provide good amount of grip. Although the S90 in Dynamic mode corners flat with minimal body roll but it’s not something you will call sporty. The biggest party pooper is the steering which feels numb and devoid of feel, even in ‘Dynamic’ mode. As a result, it’s not a very engaging drive. The brakes though felt spot on with them being linear and the discs providing a sharp bite when in need.

BRAKING AND SAFETY

Safety has been Volvo’s forte right from the inception of the brand, and the Volvo S90 proves it, coming with several avant-garde safety equipment, which include Lane Keeping Aid, Emergency Brake Assist, Seatbelt Pretensioners for all seats, Child Booster Cushion, High strength Boron Steel, Whiplash Protection and Side Impact Protection. For detail review, features and price of Volvo S 90 visit Carzprice

CONCLUSSION

After spending some quality time with the S90 there is one aspect that shines purposefully through. This car will primarily suit backseat babus as this package offers great comfort, supreme build quality, and lots of feel good factorselements. It serves up a diverse sense of style and appeal, and will suit suffice those on the lookout for something that’s safe, not too exciting to drive but has a lavishly appointed cabin with the addition of being a little different from the regulars. We now understand the essence of what this Swedish brand had in mind when crafting the S90. A great effort indeed.