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Honda Amaze Review: Honda Amaze VX (O) Review

Honda Amaze VX (O) Review

By Aditya Chatterjee; 20th February, 2015
Introduction

2015 Honda Amaze VX (O) Review

Honda recently updated its popular compact sedan, the Amaze, by adding a new variant in its existing line-up. This new variant gets all-black interiors, touchscreen enabled audio-video navigation system and newly designed power folding external mirrors.

Apart from cosmetic updates, Honda claims to have improved the NVH levels by reducing the seepage of external noise inside the cabin. To make sure we get a brief experience of all the new additions, they made us drive from Ahmadabad to Bhuj. What made the itinerary more interesting was a visit to the famous Rann of Kutch. Our take on this new variant is here.

Honda Amaze

 

Exterior

The exterior shape and profile of the New Amaze remains same as earlier. Instead of looking too petite like the Brio, the Amaze looks more robust in character. The external proportions look just right for a compact sedan, with a crisp profile.

Honda Amaze

There is a twin-slat chrome radiator grille with a wider stance to make the Amaze feel bigger than the hatch. It gets a long temple of a bonnet line which flows all the way from the front windshield. The bumper has a rather complex profile with multiple creases.

Making it a sub-4m sedan is its length of 3990mm, which is also very convenient while parking it in busy parking spots. The external mirrors, which have turn indicators embedded in them can be adjusted from inside. They auto fold when the vehicle is switched off and vice-versa. It continues to ride on 175/65 R14 tyres. The minimalistic lines on the rear look as refreshing as earlier.

Honda Amaze

 

Interior

Inside the New Amaze, the first thing that one notices is an all-black interior. This makes it feel better if not the best. The fit and finish remains to be a strong point. Honda cars have always been about sensible interiors, they might not be as appealing in appearance but their practical aspect can’t be ignored.

Honda Amaze

The start feature in the new variant is the large 15.7cm touchscreen audio-video navigation system. It comes pre-loaded with maps, satellite-based voice guided navigation, and complete in-car entertainment and connectivity features (DVD/CD, Bluetooth, USB, AUX, i-POD, MP3, FM/AM). The system comes with an integrated Bluetooth communication function that lets the user sync their phone with it and implement functions on screen including dialling, answering, history, address book and Bluetooth music play. The built-in navigation featuring intuitive and suggestive keyboard allows the user to search locations and helps to reach their destination conveniently.

In terms of space, the Amaze is a lot longer than the hatch and thus offers reasonable space for the rear occupants. The extension of wheelbase by 60mm has its set of benefits. The same is felt in terms of headroom space as the Amaze is taller too. The seats come with decent levels of cushioning with adequate support providing the right amount of comfort.

Honda Amaze

The layout of the instrumental cluster has been kept same except for a minor tweak in the form of while illumination in the background. The three spoke steering wheel feels the right size. It has audio controls mounted on it to shuffle different channels as well as adjust the volume while driving.

 

Performance

The Amaze continues to be an important car for Honda in India as it helped the Japanese car major to enter in the mass sedan market with a highly anticipated diesel engine. Based on the Earth Dreams technology, the 1.5 diesel engine was derived from a downsized 1.6, which is sold in Europe. What makes it more advanced is an aluminium finished cylinder head, use of pressure die-casting to manufacture engine block and engine optimization done on CAD. All this techno gyaan effectively means that Honda made sure that the diesel unit feels light, performs strong and delivers an efficient mileage.

Honda Amaze

It wasn’t exactly early morning as we set off from Ahmadabad to drive all the way to Bhuj. I had driven the 1.5 diesel earlier and wasn’t too happy with it’s higher than normal vibrations. The diesel clatter of the engine then felt very crude but this time the experience wasn’t as unpleasant. Honda has brought down the seepage of external noise inside the cabin by improving the NVH levels and also further tuning the engine to perform in a smooth manner.

Not only did the lower cabin noise felt good, even battling the city traffic felt quite impressive. Higher displacement engines like these are not meant for short power needs instead they are best suited on highways, which happened to be our next to drive on. This was my second time in Guajarat and let me tell you the roads here are as amazing as highways can be. Super straight patches of endless road with bare minimum potholes etc.

Honda Amaze

The quick and easy shift pattern makes the diesel unit display great confidence on highways. The torque delivery kicks in a just at a mark before 2000rpm. It was supposed to be a serious media drive but with two more known friendly faces, it turned out to be an exciting road trip. We made sure our car was loaded in terms of food, medicines and most importantly excitement.

The NVH levels in the new variant have been brought down to an extent where except the driver, the rest of the occupants always tended to fall asleep. The rear cabin room proved to be really impressive here as it had cameras, bags and other miscellaneous things which really didn’t stop the one sitting behind to feel as cozy as he would be on his sofa.

Honda Amaze

Even after being fully loaded, the engine showed no lag while overtaking. It felt sufficiently stable at high speeds. Driving on smooth roads at great speeds is not that difficult but then being automobile journos, who are always eager to click cars with picturesque locales, we spotted a densely windmill planted section and decided to drive all the way near the windmills to get an impressive shot. The absence of a proper tar road was not too encouraging but even then we did manage to drive all the way to our point of interest. We managed to do it without scraping the underbelly.

Once done with our shots, we were back on the highway to Bhuj. These roads are so well made particularly some sections that one won’t mind driving F1 cars on it. After driving for exhaustively long, at the breach of sun set we reached our final stop which is the largest tent city situated in the heart of the Kutch District-The Rann Of Kutch. These state-of-its-own-kind tents had all the modern facilities one can think of. The Rann of Kutch is just 2 - 4 kms away from this location. Seeing it in images and then seeing it in real was totally different. The Rann of Kutch is an endlessly infinite salt flat desert. The deafening silence of nothing but a stream of white sand which goes as far as you can see makes it surreal.

Honda Amaze

Such road trips are often done on SUVs which are conventionally best suited but then the Honda Amaze proved no less in terms of convenience. We got a realistic mileage of 18kmpl. 

Tech specs
Technical Specifications
 Make Honda
 Model Amaze
Variant VX (O) iDTEC
Fuel Diesel
Engine Capacity 1498
Power in PS/RPM 98 / 3600
Torque in Nm/RPM 200 / 1750
Gears 5 / MT
Length mm 3990
Width mm 1680
Height mm 1505
Wheel base mm 2405
Kerb Weight in Kg 1075
Ground clearance mm 165
Fuel tank capacity L 45
Tyre Spec 175 / 65 R14
Features
Features VX(O)
2 DIN Integrated Audio (AM/FM, MP3, USB & Aux-in) Yes
Steering Mounted Audio Control Switch Yes
Front & Rear Speakers Yes
Chrome Rings on Airvents Yes
Silver Steering Wheel Garnish Yes
Silver Inside Door Handles Yes
Beige Floor Carpeting Yes
Immobilizer Yes
Front Dual SRS Airbags Yes
Front Seat Belt Pretensioner with load Limiter Yes
ABS with EBD Yes
Driver Seat Belt Reminder Yes
WAVE Key Yes
15.7cm Touch Screen Audio Visual Navigation (DVD/CD,Bluetooth,USB,Aux-in,i-pod,MP3,FM/AM) Yes
2 DIN Integrated Audio (AM/FM, MP3, USB & Aux-in) Yes
Steering Mounted Audio Control Switch Yes
Competition
Specifications
Honda
Amaze
Maruti Suzuki
Swift Dzire
Tata
Zest
Variant VX MT iDTEC Zdi XMA
Fuel Diesel Diesel Diesel
Engine Capacity 1498 1248 1248
Power in PS/RPM 98 / 3600 74 / 4000 90 / 4000 
Torque in Nm/RPM 200 / 1750 190 @ 2000/ 200 / 1750 – 3000 
Gears 5 / MT 5 / MT 5 / AMT
Length mm 3990 3995 3995
Width mm 1680 1695 1706
Height mm 1505 1555 1570
Wheel base mm 2405 2430 2470
Kerb Weight in Kg 1075 1080 1170
Ground clearance mm 165 170 165
Fuel tank capacity L 45 45 44
Tyre Spec 175 / 65 R14 185 / 65 R15 185/60 R15 
Conclusion

The refreshed interiors and additional features in terms of touchscreen AVN makes the Amaze sit strong amongst its rivals. It still does not match the Zest, when it comes to a feature laden cabin especially as the later gets voice assist along with a Harman music system. But then, Honda’s products are known for their strong build quality and reliable performance. These new bits can help the Amaze car keep afloat till the next one comes in.

Honda Amaze