Maruti Suzuki Dzire review – India’s favourite compact sedan

Maruti’s Swift Dzire has created its own distinct identity over the last generation. The first-generation model was nothing but a Swift with a boot slapped on to it, which made it look quite disproportionate – but sold in huge numbers simply because it was practical and offered good value. In 2017, Maruti Suzuki brought in the all-new Dzire even before the new Swift, knowing how important a model it would become in our market. Now while it does resemble the Swift is some ways, it’s actually completely new and is in no way, a boot slap-on job. It continues to be one among the most popular Marutis in India, and tops other sedans from a segment above as well in terms of sales. The ‘Dzire’, as it is now called, is a top-seller and garners great sales for the brand even today.

The face-lift it got

The 2017 model was quite a nice-looking car with good proportions, unlike the previous-generation model. The rear windscreen is steeply raked and the design of the boot is not a box stuck on to the car. The Maruti Suzuki Dzire gets some lovely soft curves on its body panels along with subtle lines all over. The petal-shaped headlights are the same but the grille had gotten larger on the 2020 model, which gets a chrome outline; the front bumper too, has been restyled with the number plate holder placed on the grille. Other details include a matte-black look around the fog lights and boomerang-shaped chrome elements partly bordering the fog lamp housings. So that’s the new look up-front. The side profile remains the same; so does the rear with its LED tail lights with a chrome strip running in between.

Nothing new inside

On the inside, it gets a beige and black theme; plastics continue to feel hard and quality isn’t very impressive either. There are, however, some bits that do feel nice – like the flat-bottom steering and its audio controls. The instrument cluster is neat and the needles are positioned at zero-degrees. The seats up-front and comfortable, proving good support, and the steering features tilt adjustment. Ergonomics are fine and storage spaces can be found around too. It features an updated 7.0-inch SmartPlay Studio infotainment system and the wooden insert on the dashboard gives it a premium look. We found that the foot well could’ve been a little bigger, for it tends to hamper legroom. The longer wheelbase, compared to the first-gen car, frees up legroom at the rear. Three average-sized adults will be comfortable at the back; you also get AC vents and a 12V power socket. While the loading lip is a bit high-set, at 378 litres, boot space is full and plenty.

Easy does it

The Maruti Suzuki Dzire is powered by a 1.2-litre petrol engine, developing 88bhp and 113Nm of torque, paired to 5-speed manual transmission. The idle is quiet and almost close to being vibration-free. It sounds silky smooth, typical of all Maruti Suzuki Cars. Compared to the old K12 engine, this new Dualjet motor feels more responsive, and it picks up pace the moment you dab on the throttle. Push the engine further and you’ll be delighted by its strong power delivery, and short-shifting to a higher gear only makes the experience so much more seamless. The motor seems a bit more enthusiastic than before at low speeds, making it a boon to drive in the city, keeping the ‘box in a higher gear whilst ambling around. This is a motor that likes to spin at high speeds – and if you keep your foot on the throttle – it revs all the way to 6400rpm; up-shifting results in stronger bursts of power. The new motor, most certainly, feels more powerful and economical, but from behind the steering, everything remains the same. However, the steering does have a little weight to it, while the suspension seem to have been stiffened to an extent.

Shifts from the AGS transmission are not as seamless as CVTs or torque-converter units, but it gets the job done. The bumps are absorbed nicely and high-speed stability is good. We just wish the steering didn’t feel so disconnected from the road.

Finalising things

The Maruti Suzuki Dzire is a great all-rounder, by and large – thanks to its spacious and comfortable cabin, its friendly driving characteristics and refined engine. It’s far from being fun-to-drive, but then at this price, it’s difficult to expect a good chassis. Also, thanks to the additional features, the Dzire is now a lot more car being offered for your money. Also, grab the latest info on the upcoming cars, only at autoX.

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