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Old 17th September 2013, 12:38   #1
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Default My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Hi Fellow Team-BHPians,

It feels great to write my first post of the team-bhp forum. Have been a regular and avid reader of this forum for last 5+ years and now proud to be sharing my own experience (hopefully for the benefit of others)

What has prompted my promotion from a reader to active participant is arrival of the new machine to our family. Yes, I am talking about my new Honda Amaze SMT (Diesel) which we welcomed last Saturday (7th Sept).

The urban titanium colored beauty arrived at our home on 7th and after couple of days of city driving, I was off to a long trip on 11th morning. We visited our native place in Vidarbha (Washim) for a family function and I used the opportunity to burn the tires on my new vehicle.

Overall in 5 days, I drove close to 1500 KM, on the route -
Pune - Ahmednagar - Aurangabad - Jalna - Mehkar - Washim - Mahur - Washim - Akola - Washim - Jalna - Aurangabad - Pune

Most of the drive was on state highways and almost half of them were pretty bad due to recent heavy rains in the area. Suspension, braking and performance of the car were thoroughly tested during this trip.

So, what do I feel about the car after the first 1500 KM? Well, Great !! the car is a real pleasure to drive. Though I was a newbie to diesel cars, never felt like one. Let me take one parameter at a time and explain pros and cons -

Exterior styling and design - Amaze is surely not the best-looking car, but then in this segment (entry level sedans) none is. The car is a sit-down car which means that you actually have to bend down to enter the car, especially in the front end. Exterior wise, the car seems to "stand up" towards back, which means the rear part is slightly taller than the front. This is exactly opposite its competitor Dzire, whcih seems to get narrower in the back. Its this design that works really well for the interior space, whcih I will explain later. The front lights and bonnet look is copied from Brio and feels bit outdated.

Interior Design and Quality - The dashboard is decent. My car has a biege colored interiors with a dual tone dashboard and door frame, as can be seen in the picture below. We fitted the biege colored seat covers to match overall color coordination of the car. AC/Music panels are seperate and look pretty basic for this segment of the car. However, they function really well. Glove box is sufficiently sized and also has compartments to keep documents. Interior space within the car is amazing. The exterior "stand-up" design enables the front seat driver and passengers a lot of space below the dashboard. This pushes both the front seats forward, creating plenty of leg space for the back-seat passengers. The back leg space is one of the best I have seen even in some of the luxury sedan cars..The thin car seats and unique curved design helps this leg space further. The seats dont provide adjustable head rest though (which is one of hte common features in many of the even lower-segment cars). But I wont complain as I rairly use them.

Engine performance and Driveability - City - Car is a fun to drive in city. Most of the city driving can be done in 3rd gear with pick-up from dead speed in 2nd gear. You enjoy the flat torque when it kicks in immediately after a little acceleration and you can easily give up the accelerator. The only problem is the flat torque continues to push car in heavy traffic and you need to manage that using brakes and clutch. The steering is ultra smooth and I could complete U-turns at much ease even on some very busy roads.

The gears are smooth most of the time, however I felt resistance especially moving from 3rd to 4th couple of times. Have talked to service staff about this. It is much more easier to move from 3rd to 5th as the car doesnt drop power between the shift.

People talked about engine noise and it is definitely there, but as I dont have much experience on diesel engines, cant be sure if it is too high. I surely noticed vibrations, at higher speeds on legs and if you hold the gear stick. But again, not sure how it compares against other diesel vehicles.

Highway - Engine picks up from 50/60 to 80/100 really quick on 5th geat and beyond 80, you start getting ECO indicating fuel efficiency. The car settles down on 2500 rpm around 90-100 speed and post that you can just cruise on a highway provided you are not disturbed. I did touch speeds of 120-130 briefly on highways and the car was absolutely fine. Even though the steering remains light, you dont feel losing control and car is manueverable even at this speed.

Fuel Efficiency - I havent seen any difference in fuel efficiency in city vs highway which is bit strange. The car is consistently giving around 17-18 kmpl with AC on most of the time.

Handling - I have been given MRF ZVTV OEM tyres with the car and I did think about replacing them with something better at the time of purchase. However, I didnt have the time or the patience, hence have persisted with them. In last 2 weeks, have driven on some fairly rough roads at high speeds, and so far, the car has held well. Though, I would not call it excellent, especially the suspension performance on potholes and speed breakers. I believe this and the road clearance can be improved further.

Braking - I wanted the ABS and EBD on my car and got it in SMT version. The brakes performed really well in few of the situations. Though I havent tasted the ABS yet, braked couple of times on slightly wet roads and it was fine. Brakes are not hard and you dont get the feeling that the car will stop at hard braking, but it does.

Some of my likes about the car -
The flat torque funda really works wonder. The car doesnt provide the "turbo kick" the diesel engines are famous for. However, the car picks up slowly but surely. On the highway, there were numerous times when I had to slow down from 80/100 to 0 and accelerate back again. Most of the times, the car picked up momentum from 2nd/3rd gear and once it reaches 50/60 KM, the car seems to go in auto mode, picking up speed without the accelerator.

The brakes worked very well. On the pothole ridden highways, this was absolutely essential as one couldnt see a monster pothole on a otherwise perfectly paved road and had to break real hard. The car stopped without a thud and was steerable.

The space for the passenger seats at the back is amazing. This was one of my crucial requirements as my parents often travel with me. I was bit suspicious of Amaze as the width is lowest among the three cars I was considering. However, somehow Honda has managed to create extra space and for those seating in back, it means extra leg space and comfort. My family did not complain of travel fatigue even after 1500 Km and that for me, is the biggest compliment for the car..

The comfort is enhanced by the excellent quality of AC and music systems. The SMT version comes with a basic-looking Music systems and without climate control AC. However, what it has works really well. Sound for both FM and USB modes was excellent and we enjoyed our long rides. [/list]
Few Minor niggles which I found -
  • the gear shifting was slightly hard, especially for the 4th gear. May be because I am used to Petrol Gear box. I also found out during the later part of the trip that I didnt need the 4th gear at all. I could speed up to 50/60 on 3rd and then shift straight to 5th. In fact, the "Eco" light on the dashboard indicating economical driving seemed to favour 5th gear over 4th.

    Vibration levels are bit high and you feel it especially when you touch gear stick and clutch. Not sure how it compares with other diesel competitors.

    Overall mileage I got was in the range of 17-18 kmpl, on state highways and with AC on almost all the time. Definitely way lower than the promised 25.8 kmpl, but the dealer has promised that it will improve after the 3rd free service.

Drove straight for the first free service after the long trip, which made the service manager surprised because I had met him just a week back while taking delivery of the car !!

Overall, definitely happy with the new car..hoping for a amazing long journey with it..
Attached Thumbnails
My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report-dscn2436.jpg  

My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report-dscn2510.jpg  


Last edited by GTO : 24th September 2013 at 11:12. Reason: Adding paragraph spacing for better readability. Thanks!
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Old 17th September 2013, 14:44   #2
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Default re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Let me be the first one to congratulate you.

Congratulations on owning a Honda. Wish you miles of happiness and trouble free journey (which Honda's are known for).

Could you mind sharing the vehicle cost.

Cheers !
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Old 17th September 2013, 14:46   #3
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Default re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Congrat's on your new Amaze, could you please share the service intervals for this car
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Old 17th September 2013, 14:50   #4
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Congratulations, amaze_pune! Good choice considering your requirement of space at the back. Can you share the OTR price and the deal you got? Wish you many happy miles on your Amaze.
Drive safe.

P.S. - Jalna-Mehkar stretch is in very bad condition. A better option is Aurangabad-Ajanta-Buldhana-Akola.
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Old 17th September 2013, 15:39   #5
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Default re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Congrats on the Amaze, one thing though, service will not have any bearing on the mileage. After 5-10k kms once the engine has settled down, it will automatically start giving you more mileage. But do not expect what they advertise, those are all ARAI figures in ideal conditions. Have fun, waiting for the pictures.
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Old 17th September 2013, 15:45   #6
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Default re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

@ Abhi and the Skyliner - Thanks for the wishes.

My SMT diesel model costed 8.22 Lakhs ex showroom in PCMC. No discounts from Honda or dealer :(

@ the skyliner - Yes, the Jalna-Mehkar stretch was pretty bad, which was surprising because I had driven on this stretch 3 years back and it was spotless!! I guess the heavy rains were to blame. The worst part was through Mehkar town. We could see a bypass built, but it is not open for traffic yet. I did not take the Akola route as it would have been very long to reach Washim.

Also as promised, uploading couple of snaps of my 100 horses machine !!


My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report-dscn2507.jpg

My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report-dscn2444.jpg
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Old 24th September 2013, 10:39   #7
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Thread moved from Assembly Line to Test-Drives & Initial Ownership Reports. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 28th September 2013, 13:27   #8
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Many congratulations Amaze_Pune on getting the most powerful entry level sedan in its class. Looks amazing in that colour. Hats off to your daring to venture on a 1500km long journey in a car which is just out of the showroom. No doubt you are going to love this car, the more you hit the road.

Keep updating this thread, with your driving experience & servicing costs. Wishing you thousands of happy miles with your amazing machine.
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Old 28th September 2013, 14:53   #9
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Quote:
Originally Posted by amaze_pune View Post
Hi Fellow Team-BHPians,

the gear shifting was slightly hard, especially for the 4th gear. May be because I am used to Petrol Gear box. I also found out during the later part of the trip that I didnt need the 4th gear at all. I could speed up to 50/60 on 3rd and then shift straight to 5th. In fact, the "Eco" light on the dashboard indicating economical driving seemed to favour 5th gear over 4th.
Sir, Diesel engines and Petrol engines use the same gearbox. Same is the case with the Amaze. Correct me if I am wrong. Brilliant car, I want to buy a chauffer driven car for my family, I thought of going for the Corolla Diesel but the Engine Displacement and power is segments lower, also a New Corolla is expected early Next Year. We plan to replace our Skoda Octavia, is the amaze a good choice. I know it is a segment below but Honda ASS is just wonderful (Especially after owning 2 Skodas and 2 VWs). I had a lovely experience with my Jazz. So, is the rear space and comfort good enough for it to be used as a chauffer driven vehicle. I thought of going for the Sunny but don't trust Nissan in India right now. Does the rear bench have an armrest?
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Old 28th September 2013, 18:38   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by prakhar1998 View Post

Sir, Diesel engines and Petrol engines use the same gearbox. Same is the case with the Amaze. Correct me if I am wrong. Brilliant car, I want to buy a chauffer driven car for my family, I thought of going for the Corolla Diesel but the Engine Displacement and power is segments lower, also a New Corolla is expected early Next Year. We plan to replace our Skoda Octavia, is the amaze a good choice. I know it is a segment below but Honda ASS is just wonderful (Especially after owning 2 Skodas and 2 VWs). I had a lovely experience with my Jazz. So, is the rear space and comfort good enough for it to be used as a chauffer driven vehicle. I thought of going for the Sunny but don't trust Nissan in India right now. Does the rear bench have an armrest?
Amaze is a good choice, a brilliant package, but Sunny would be my preffered choice of a chauffer driven car.
It got oodles of legroom and is quite comfortable too. Amaze has been built to space (<4m).
You may choose either, can't go wrong with these two atleast.
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Old 30th September 2013, 10:51   #11
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

@ Prakhar1998 - Amaze does have the central rear armrest and is quite comfortable for the 2 at the back. Yet, would agree with Ahmad, Sunny is in a different segment altogether (more in comparison with City, Verna and Vento). Have sat at the back of all 4 and I would recommend to TD (or rather Test sit at back !!) for all 4 - Sunny, City, Verna and Vento and then decide.
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Old 30th September 2013, 13:18   #12
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Quote:
Originally Posted by prakhar1998 View Post
Sir, Diesel engines and Petrol engines use the same gearbox. Same is the case with the Amaze. Correct me if I am wrong. Brilliant car, I want to buy a chauffer driven car for my family, I thought of going for the Corolla Diesel but the Engine Displacement and power is segments lower, also a New Corolla is expected early Next Year. We plan to replace our Skoda Octavia, is the amaze a good choice. I know it is a segment below but Honda ASS is just wonderful (Especially after owning 2 Skodas and 2 VWs). I had a lovely experience with my Jazz. So, is the rear space and comfort good enough for it to be used as a chauffer driven vehicle. I thought of going for the Sunny but don't trust Nissan in India right now. Does the rear bench have an armrest?
I think the petrol and diesel version may use different versions depending on the amount of torque which the gearbox can handle. Diesel gearboxes are thus more sturdier.
For the chauffeur driven, Sunny should be a more rational choice, especially for the people in metros. The rear seat is very wide and the legroom beats cars two segments above.
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Old 1st November 2013, 08:16   #13
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

I have found the Honda Amaze Diesel gear box to be very rocky and tight. It was a shock for me after having used the Honda City. I always thought it was a specific complaint with the car (it belongs to my colleague). When we referred this to the Honda Engineers, we got a visit from the Honda Factory (NPD Engineer) who rode the vehicle and promised to get back.
Amaze owners, how do you rate the Honda Amaze diesel with the Honda City gear boxes? Are they class apart as per you?
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Old 1st November 2013, 09:05   #14
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Many congrats! I believe the FE might improve later on for the 20+ kmpl figures.

Have a safe journey ahead!

@prakhar1998 - The Sunny has inarguably the best rear seats for a car of this price bracket. Please take your family for a TD and decide for yourselves.
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Old 1st November 2013, 15:07   #15
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Default Re: My Honda Amaze 1.5L i-DTEC SMT: 1,500 KM report

Congratulations Amaze_Pune. car color looks really special among the white and silver regular crowd.
Much has been said about the engine refinement, smoothness and Honda reliability which will ensure tension free ownership.
Enjoy the safe ride.
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