Faceoff: Maruti Ciaz vs Honda City

At the India Auto Expo 2014, there was one car at the Maruti stall which looked like it didn’t quite belong there. Maruti has come to symbolize efficiency and practicality, but design daring isn’t something we’d associate with the King of the Indian automobile industry. However, the Maruti Ciaz concept was such a striking model that it elicited at least a double take from those who happened to catch a glimpse of it. But of course, in the transition from flamboyant concept to road-going car, some of the flare has been lost. Be that as it may, the Ciaz is a combination of Maruti’s perennial mastery of efficiency in a shell that is a product of their newfangled absorption with design.

Understandably, with the launch of new Ciaz in the market, Maruti has very high hopes over its success. But, the battle’s not going to be easy as it has to compete with the Honda City, a car that has made a comeback and how. For a manufacturer that has conventionally rode the success wave with small cars, Maruti is treading relatively new ground with the launch of the Ciaz. Whether the Maruti Ciaz is ready to take on the 2014 Honda City comes down to a number of factors. Let’s look at how these two models stack up.

2014 city red

EXTERIOR

The latest Honda City has been fully carved with a new design from the bumpers to the rear of the car. The large chrome grille, razor sharp lines all over its body, and the outstretched tail lamps gives it a more edgy appearance than we’ve seen from its successors. But surprisingly, Maruti doesn’t trail too far behind. The Ciaz is not City but it does have a lot going for it in the looks department. The widened chrome grille, smart projector headlamps, and its curves are different compared to the other big cars. The features are a lot more rounded as compared to the angular relations in the City. It also has a sleek side profile, and a crease line which is a lot straighter when compared to the one the City sports.

The Ciaz is the best-looking car to ever come from the Maruti stable. The Honda City has always been known for its cosmetic capabilities. It does come as a surprise to see how well the Ciaz performs against the City in terms of its exteriors.

New Honda City : 4Maruti Ciaz: 4

interiors-honda-cityINTERIORS AND EQUIPMENT Both the cars share certain features in them such as the push button start/stop, climate control, rear AC vents, and multimedia controls incorporated over the steering wheel with Bluetooth telephony. The  510 litre boot is also something the two have in common. The beige interiors finish in the Maruti Ciaz lend it a light an airy feel. At the dashboard, it is incorporated with a touch screen infotainment system with satellite navigation. It also has rear parking sensors, and a sun-blind for rear windscreen. Meanwhile, the new Honda City also gets upgraded interior in its latest iteration, with a new gloss black finish with fine quality and texture. It is the best in its class, and is best known for its interior designing in the upcoming years. It also offers a sunroof as an additive feature over the Maruti Ciaz on its top variant. Unlike the exteriors, the competition isn’t as close on the interiors front. The Ciaz gets a lot right but simply cannot match the extravagant City.New Honda City : 4.5Maruti Ciaz: 4 
2015 maruti suzuki ciazENGINE AND PERFORMANCEThe new Honda City comes with a 1.5 litre i-VTEC engine compared to the 1.4 litre K-series Ciaz's engine. The Ciaz develops 92 PS, whereas, the new Honda City develops peak power of 119 PS, which is a whopping 27 PS greater than that of the Ciaz. Clearly, the City comes off better on paper, and continues to maintain a powerful engine as it has since previous generations.The Maruti Ciaz offers better a good suspension setup and a fair amount of on the drive. However, when it comes to the pickup, the new Honda City leaves the Ciaz far behind. The 27 PS greater power output begins to reveal itself in the form of more power on tap and better lift off the blocks. But the Ciaz does provide better grip with its huge 195 section tyres as compared to the City's 175 section tyres. Thus the City under-steers a bit on corners but does do pretty well when the brakes are required to kick in.New Honda City : 4Maruti Ciaz: 3.5
 rear view maruti suzuki ciazMILEAGE AND PRICINGThe manufacturers of the Maruti Ciaz claim that this product provides the best mileage in its segment. The petrol variant of the Ciaz is said to have a mileage of 20.7kmpl, and the diesel variant offers 26kmpl. According to the ARAI figures, the new Honda City offers a mileage of 17.8kmpl in the petrol variant and 25kmpl is the diesel variant.The new Honda City ranges between 7.20 to11.06 lakhs. Maruti’s Ciaz comes in with a price that starts 20,000 below the City. The Ciaz’s price ranges from 6.99 lakhs to 9.80 lakhs.New Honda City: 3.5Maruti Ciaz: 4VERDICTFor a newcomer, the Maruti Ciaz does extremely well against the New Honda City. On most parameters  that matter in the Indian market, the Ciaz matches up to or even outperforms the City. It eventually comes down to how a buyer perceives a car. For those who need a dependable commuter, the Ciaz is the way to go. For the enthusiasts and those who like to focus on the nuances, the City is a great choice.

Face Off: Maruti Suzuki Ciaz vs Hyundai Verna

2015 maruti suzuki ciaz

Maruti has been out of the game for quite sometime now. Slowly losing market presence to manufacturers such as Hyundai and Honda, the Indian car maker has had it rough in various sectors of the Indian market. While the car manufacturer sells units in good numbers in the budget segments, Maruti Suzuki has not been able to break new ground in the C1 sedan segments. With the launch of the Fluidic Verna and the more recent 2014 Honda City, Maruti needed a replacement for the aging SX4 to compete against foreign manufacturers. Launching in a few weeks time, the Ciaz will be Maruti Suzuki’s trump card against the hugely successful Verna and City. How well does the new model compare? We find out.

Design:

Maruti Suzuki Ciaz:

The Maruti Suzuki Ciaz is a milestone in the company’s design segment. Although the car maker has improved over the past few years, Maruti still did not have the finesse of the Japanese or the extravagance that the Verna offered. This time however, with the Ciaz, the Indian car manufacturer has vastly improved itself on the design front. Headlight design is striking without the outlandishly swept back design implemented in most cars these days. Unlike the Chinese model, Maruti has opted for lesser amounts of chrome around the grille and front bumper.

2015 maruti suzuki ciaz
The Maruti Suzuki Ciaz Is A Huge Step Up In Terms Of Design When Compareed to The SX4

Over at the back, one cannot help but notice the similarities in tail light design to the current gen Honda City. However the stylish tail lamps, boot lip spoiler and well designed rear bumper gives the Ciaz a premium look, a characteristic lacking in most cars from the Indian brand.

Hyundai Verna:Hyundai's critically acclaimed Fluidic Design philosophy worked wonders for current gen Verna here in India. With the launch of the C segment sedan here in India, Hyundai reinvented its brand image as a trend setter and not just a trend follower. Sadly however, riding on the immense success of the sedan, the manufacturer has failed to update the Verna sufficiently to compete against its rivals and as a result though the Verna is a striking car, the design has been around for quite sometime now and most buyers may want to look for something fresh.

[caption id="attachment_570" align="aligncenter" width="1024"]hyundai verna compare The Hyundai Verna[/caption]Winner: Maruti Suzuki CiazInteriors:Maruti Suzuki Ciaz:The Ciaz's interiors showcases Maruti's steady growth into a more mature manufacturer. Focusing on not just following the trend but developing a design philosophy that suits its vehicles, the Ciaz sports is one of the most well balanced cabins in its segment. While cars such as the Vento adopt a no-nonsense approach, the Indian audience always look for a bit of zing in everything. The Ciaz strikes the perfect balance between functionality and panache. Making good use of faux wood and premium plastics, the Ciaz's interiors a major step up from that of the SX4 and offers a more than premium feel to it.
[caption id="attachment_3011" align="aligncenter" width="1366"]maruti suzuki ciaz interiors Interiors of the New Ciaz[/caption]The center console also features a high end multi touch infotainment system that offers smartphone connectivity, navigation and voice recognition. One of the most interesting additions to the car's entertainment  system is MirrorLink which throws the paired smartphone's display directly onto the infotainment screen. The Ciaz also offers the best in class cabin space.Hyundai Verna:Compared to the Ciaz, the Verna is rather dated. While the Hyundai sedan has been hugely successful in its lifetime, the aging tech inside has begun to show. Interior design is still top notch. However, there is escaping the fact that the Verna sports a rather simple entertainment system with minimal connectivity options. Despite the beautiful plastics and faux wood inserts, the Verna falls short on features when compared to the Ciaz.
[caption id="attachment_571" align="aligncenter" width="600"]Interiors of the Hyundai Verna Interiors of the Hyundai Verna[/caption]Winner: Maruti Suzuki CiazUnder the Hood:Maruti Suzuki Ciaz:Maruti Suzuki has always been about value for money and the Ciaz is no exception. Powering the Ciaz will be both petrol and diesel engines. The petrol variant will sport the Ertiga's 1.4 L VVT engine that gives an incredible 20.73 km/l. When launched, the Ciaz will be one of the most fuel efficient petrol powered sedans available in the Indian market. The diesel mill will be a 1.3 L DDiS unit that also competes for best in class mileage. Rivaling that of Honda's EarthDreams 1.6 L i-DTEC motor, the 1.3 L diesel engine is expected to give 26.21 kilometers to the liter.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=diH3CvSfMW4Sadly however, Maruti Suzuki will not be offering the Ciaz with an AMT or automatic gearbox at the time of launching.Hyundai Verna:The Hyundai Verna makes use of a 1.6 L and 1.4 L petrol as well as 1.4 L and 1.6 L diesel mills. The 1.4 L petrol mill churns out 105 bhp @ 6300 RPM and 138 Nm @ 5000 RPM while the more powerful 1.6 L petrol engine puts out 121 bhp @ 6300 RPM and a peak torque of 155 Nm @ 4200 RPM. The 1.4 L and 1.6 L CRDi diesel engines produce 89 bhp @ 4000 RPM and 121 bhp @ 6300 RPM respectively.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MOqxfriXnsIBoth the 1.6 L petrol and diesel are also offered with an automatic gearbox.Winner: Hyundai VernaVerdict:The Hyundai Verna has been a segment leader for quite sometime now. Sadly with the lack of updates to take on newer arrivals, the Verna has now become a thing of the past. Until the next generation Verna (rumored to be the Solaris Internationally) is set to arrive, Maruti's latest offering is one of the best in both the manufacturer's history as well as in the current market.