Maruti Suzuki’s super hit offering, the Ciaz has been winning hearts since its launch in the Indian market back in 2014 and has sold more than 1 lakh units. And why not?. It has all the right boxes ticked to be a super hit!. I mean just look at it, Isn’t she just gorgeous!. It commands respect of a premium and much expensive luxury car. The fine design lines that run through the side of the car, those cuts and curves all around makes it look European enough. At the front the massive grille with chrome bits and those lovely detailed projector headlamps create a distinctive and striking look. Even the design of alloys suit perfectly to the large body proportions. An add-on Body Kit makes it look even more jaw-dropping specially with those gun-metal grey specced alloy wheels
The rear may remind you of an Honda City, thanks to the similarly designed tail lamps. This one looks a bit better than the Honda City in my opinion though. The same story continues on the inside. The cabin is well appointed and feels rich. It comes loaded with features like Climate control air conditioning, Key-less entry and go, MP3, Bluetooth, AUX, USB compatible stereo, manually adjustable seats, dual airbags, ABS etc. The rear occupants are not ignored as well. Apart from the spacious room back there, the seats also get an armrest, rear A/C vents and manually operated Sun blinds for the rear windshield.
Get in the car and you notice that the interiors feel like they come from a car from a segment above. The quality of the plastic may not be on par with the Germans but it still feels plush and premium to look at. The button start adds to the feel. In the rear, the car is spacious but being a six-footer I found my head just touching the roof when i sit upright. The leg room is good but the seats lack support under the thighs. Hence the rear seats are not so comfortable even though there is a lot of space back there. Lesson learnt : More space doesn’t always mean more comfort or luxury. That said, the interiors are well put up giving a nice and airy feel in the cabin.
Okay then, Let me take you through what the Ciaz has to offer beyond it’s pretty face.
Powertrain: This Ciaz in particular, the petrol version has 1.3 L engine that churns out 91 BHP and 130 NM torque. You can opt for a manual or an automatic transmission. The diesel one however comes only in a manual form with a 1.2 L diesel engine that produces 89 BHP power and 200 NM of torque. The petrol and the diesel serve a claimed mileage of around 20 kmpl and 28 kmpl respectively. These figures may not be achievable in real world conditions but Maruti Suzuki cars do give out considerably good mileage. Hence a 43 litre fuel tank that the Ciaz gets in Petrol and Diesel both should be enough for long trips.
Comfort: Absolutely no complaints on the front seat comfort. The armrest and seat adjustment provide a good driving posture. The rear although spacious somewhat lacks head room and seating comfort because of inadequate under thigh support. There is a rear sun blind and rear AC vents to compensate for the seat comfort. The suspensions do their job pretty well to handle Indian roads. They soak up most of the bumps and potholes with ease.
Driving Experience: Driving the automatic Ciaz was more fun that i expected. Generally the automatic transmissions kill the driving pleasure by taking time to respond and shift up or down. I’m not saying that this one was very quick, but it was acceptable enough. It does not give any jerks and the shifts are smooth. It behaves according to your driving style I believe. When driven normally with a considerably light foot, it will shift up early and smoothly. When tried pushing the accelerator hard, the transmission holds on to the gear and shifts up at redline to give the best acceleration. Should help in overtaking or when negotiating ghat section and hilly roads. The steering is also direct enough to give proper feedback.
Summing it up: Starting from 8 lakhs ex-showroom price the Ciaz strikes a good deal as far as value for money is concerned. For the price you get a capable luxury car. Also low maintenance and running costs are an added bonus that comes with Maruti Suzuki products. It may not be the best chauffeur driven car but a very good package family sedan with ample boot space and cabin space to keep every occupant happy. It’s not bad to drive either. With no major drawbacks it is indeed a good deal.