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Old 30th July 2018, 12:59   #1
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Honda Amaze : Official Review

The Honda Amaze is on sale in India at a price of between Rs. 5.60 - 9.00 lakhs (all-India).

What you'll like:

• An all-rounded compact sedan & one that's well-priced too
• Spacious, practical interiors. Ambience is far better than the outgoing car's cheap cabin
• Diesel + CVT combination is unbeatable! Indisputably the segment best
• Suspension offers comfortable ride quality with neutral on-road behaviour
• Features such as cruise control, paddle shifts (petrol AT), touchscreen ICE with Android & iOS, reversing camera…
• Dual airbags, ABS, rear parking sensors & ISOFIX are standard across the range
• 3-year unlimited km warranty, extendable to 5-years & unlimited km

What you won't:

• Tall rear passengers will find headroom to be insufficient & the fixed headrests useless
• Diesel's NVH, although improved, is far from class-leading. Not high-rpm friendly either
• Petrol CVT is fair within the city, but rather mediocre on the highway
• Automatics are unavailable in the top VX variant. Period
• Dzire offers more 'bling' & features (LED projector headlamps, auto-headlamps, flat-bottom steering, rear air-con, nicer ICE…)
• Look closely and you'll find a few faults in part quality, fit and finish (uncool for a Honda)
• The 175 mm tyres are too thin & the 35-liter fuel tank too small

The 2021 Facelift:

Link to Review

This review has been jointly compiled with Eddy & Suhaas. Thanks to them for the expert observations!

Last edited by Aditya : 25th August 2021 at 14:16.
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Old 30th July 2018, 12:59   #2
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Review Index:

Interior - Front

Interior - Rear

In-Car Entertainment

Driving the 1.5L Diesel CVT

Driving the 1.2L Petrol CVT

Driving the 1.5L Diesel MT

Ride & Handling

Other Points

Smaller yet Significant Things

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:30.
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Old 30th July 2018, 12:59   #3
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Compact sedans have come a long way. They're no longer small, cheap or a compromise in anyway. Case in point = just look at the new Dzire. This next-generation Amaze is also a large improvement over its predecessor and rightly so. It was the 1st-gen Amaze that helped the company double its market share in FY 2014. Yearly sales for the Amaze have been 77k in FY 2014, 66k in 2015, 54k in 2016, 33k in 2017 and 21k in 2018. Overall, the sales have gradually fallen after the peak of 2014 and Honda would have realised that 'cheap' won't sell (remember the outgoing car's dashboard?). 5 years is about the right time to introduce the next-generation too (old Amaze was launched in 2013).

The Amaze has grown; it is now longer by 5mm, wider by 15 mm and the wheelbase has gone up by 65 mm. The only dimension to decrease is the height, and that too by a small 4 mm. Importantly, the ground clearance has gone up by 5 mm to 170 mm, as has the boot from 400 to 420 liters.

Honda Amaze : Official Review-amaze-comparo.png

The older car was a Brio with a boot strapped on. Further, it was obvious that the Brio, Amaze and Mobilio were different iterations of the same car. The newer one looks more wholesome and has better road presence. That said, the weird 'flat' front and rear ends may not appeal to everyone. The Dzire is surely more universally appealing in that sense.

The quirky front is dominated by a large chrome piece. On the side sit two regular headlamps with an LED pilot lamp in an L-shape. The bonnet gets prominent humps on the outer side (visible from inside), while circular foglamps are housed below in the bumper. A wide air dam is located between the fogs. The front appears to have been chopped vertically off a slab though!! The rear too gets a similarly boxy treatment, minus the chrome. It appears that Honda has used all the available length from the 4 meters given to them. From the side, the boot looks more well-integrated than before. The shoulder line is less steeper and the overall profile looks clean. There is no other use of chrome, other than what's seen at the front. This lack of chrome on the sides & rear will appeal to BHPians, but the mass market might be left wanting.

Fit and finish are good, however the panel gaps are wider than expected at some places (e.g. boot, bonnet). The car weighs between 905 – 1,031 kg across the variants. The new car is lighter as the old Amaze weighed between 950 - 1,060 kilos. And get this, the new Diesel AT is lighter than the old Diesel MT. Yes, the sheet metal still feels tinny for the most part - the fenders and bumpers flex easily if you press them with your thumb. However, not all panels reflect cost / weight saving. The bonnet feels heavier. The doors shut nicer than what we remember of the outgoing Amaze, although they feel a bit hollow. Paint quality is satisfactory and the car is available in 5 shades (the Golden Brown looks fantastic).

In the area of safety, the Amaze gets dual airbags, seatbelt pre-tensioners, ABS with EBD, ISOFIX child seat anchors and rear parking sensors as standard. Very cool. However, we have a bone to pick with whoever decided that something as important as a rear windshield defogger should be deleted from the lowest two variants.

The front gets a large chrome applique (too thick IMHO) that is flanked on both sides by regular halogen single-bulb headlamps. The position lights extend downward to look like DRLs. Notice how the chrome extends over the top of the headlamps in a slim line. The car decidedly looks more mature than the earlier Amaze:

C-shaped tail-lamps and how they extend over the boot lid is the talking point of the rear. Boot gets a prominent lip at the top. Some might miss a chrome strip here. Overall, the new Amaze is boxy rather than curvy:

Sure looks like someone abruptly chopped off something from the front! The sides get a prominent shoulder line that flows along the entire length of the car. The front and rear ends get small overhangs and the overall design is well integrated. It is no longer a Brio with a boot pasted at the back:

The new Amaze is longer, wider & lower than the outgoing car. Interestingly, despite just a 5 mm increase in total length, the wheelbase measures at 2,470 mm - a whopping increase of 65 mm! The ground clearance has gone up by 5 mm to 170 mm:

Honda has designed this car using a lot of sharp edges. The styling philosophy is a total opposite of the outgoing car. Except for the chrome at the front, the rest of the car doesn't get shiny treatment anywhere. From this angle, the car looks neat & contemporary:

Compared to the front, the rear is ok. It is flat as well, but not as much as the front. Looks like Honda has used every mm of the available 4 meters to design this car!

Regular halogens when the Dzire gives you LEDs!! Come on, Honda - not even projectors here? How outdated. Check out the L-shaped LED pilot lamps at the bottom. The top gets a chrome eyebrow that merges into the larger chrome piece at the centre:

With all the lights in action. Turn indicator is placed at the outer side of the assembly:

Turn on just the position lamps and the car gets a nicer presence. These are however, not bright at all. During the day, they are almost unnoticeable. They won't satisfy your DRL dreams:

Chrome strip at the front is too thick IMHO. The outer edges of this grille swoop upwards and onto the headlamps. Sweet touch. Except for the top, it is surrounded by black plastic on all sides. Honda's designers have only used a ruler here, not a compass:

A close look at the mesh pattern of the grille. The hexagonal shapes are of two different sizes laid on top of each other in a geometric pattern. The outer edges are blocked though:

The car gets a large air dam with foglamp housings on either side. The mesh pattern is the same as that of the grille above, but the holes are slightly larger. The vertically-mounted intercooler is visible on the right:

Circular foglamps are housed in twin pentagonal shapes. The right foglamp gets blocked out vents, while the left side gets a partially open mesh (visible in the previous image). The fogs light up the road's outer edge sufficiently:

Diesel engine gets an underbody cover (petrol doesn't):

The bonnet gets these nice crease lines. The area outside the lines is raised - like a bulge - and is visible from inside the cabin. Very unique, we like it. Side of the bonnet has a clamshell effect:

Windshield wipers get hidden behind the bonnet:

A lone washer shoots out three jets of water:

While the wipers cover a decent part of the windshield, they are let down by the inadequate washer spray. The water ends up in the middle of the screen and it takes a good 3 swipes from the wipers to clean the entire glass:

Take a look at the varying panel gaps at the front. Some shut lines are wide:

Boot's panel gaps near the tail lights and the bottom edge are ugly:

Electrically-foldable ORVMs have integrated turn-indicators:

Door handle gets a black "lock" button at the front. It's there on the passenger side too. These handles weren't attached tightly and appeared flimsy:

To unlock the car, just insert your hand behind the door handle (with the key in range):

15-inch multi-spoke alloys are shod in 175/65 profile rubber. We're satisfied with the wheel size, but not the tyres which we feel are too skinny for ~100 BHP on tap. Our test car was fitted with Bridgestone Ecopia tyres. Lowest two variants get 14-inch steel rims with the same tyre profile:

Glass area is satisfactory. See how the C-Pillar sharply slopes downward (it eats into headroom at the back):

The car gets a prominent shoulder line that starts at the headlamp and ends at the tail lamp:

The side gets an angular kink that slopes upwards along the rear:

Plain roof gets no creases or lines:

Shark fin antenna sits at the rear:

Well-integrated boot looks good. Notice how much the lip spoiler juts out. But where is the bumper??!! In case of a rear impact, you are definitely looking at visiting the dealer's body shop:

The C-shaped tail lamps. The boot lid houses only the reflectors (that area has no light):

With the lights in action:

L-shaped rear pilot lights. Nope, these aren't LED units:

Amaze branding is prominent - a size bigger than we'd have liked. Lower edges of the tail lamps align with the boot lid lines:

Four parking sensors, even on the base variant! All sensors face the back - the outer sensors ought to be on the curved part of the bumper to get the best coverage:

Reversing camera is neatly tucked in, between the number plate lights. The boot opening button is seen as well:

Engine & variant badging, yes, but nothing of the transmission. ATs don't get an additional badge. We think Honda should brag about the CVT's smoothness & come up with a cool name. Just see how smartly Maruti has branded the jerky AMT as "AGS" (auto gear shift):

Rear tow hook sits in the center:

Rear end gets the ubiquitous torsion bar with coil springs:

Old car is friendly, new one is more confident. The growth in dimensions is also evident:

The rear styling is now more angular and boxy:

The new Amaze looks more contemporary. Loses the multiple crease lines from the older car. The shoulder line has also become less steep (note: the older Amaze is running on upsized 15-inch rims, thanks to BHPian Noelnelly for bringing his car along):

Last edited by Aditya : 31st March 2021 at 14:07.
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Old 30th July 2018, 12:59   #4
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Interior - Front

The improvements compared to the earlier Amaze are felt right from the moment you open the doors. The doors have a better feel to them and they shut nicer (although they do feel hollow). Getting in the driver’s seat is no trouble. The doors open wide in a triple-stage action and the door sill is narrow.

Honda has learned its lessons and the interior no longer screams 'cheap'. The cabin ambience is now good - far better than the earlier Amaze - although the Dzire's is superior (thanks to that flat-bottom steering, faux wood inserts etc.). The black & beige colour theme with silver highlights & some piano black is classic Honda stuff. We like the dashboard's design; the center fascia is angled towards the driver too. The cabin feel is decent now and no owner should complain. Plus, the large glass area lends an airy feel to the interior.

As per segment norms, hard plastics are used, but most of them are of fair quality. Honda has also used interesting textures on certain plastic parts to make them look good. You'll live with it without whining. Still, there is no doubt that Honda has cut corners and overall quality is 'acceptable' at best. No comparison to the segment-best Xcent & Ameo. We plugged in our phone charger and the entire panel on which the socket is mounted flexes! Even the roof moulding easily flexes if you press it with your finger.

The ergonomics are spot on, as is the case with all Hondas. Things are just where you expect them to be. The all-round visibility is good too. Friendly Moderator Aditya commented that visibility is better than in the Dzire. Space wise, head and shoulder room are adequate at the front. Even 6-footers will be comfortable with the legroom. Those who are super tall however will immediately notice that the seat's fore & aft adjustment is limited. It's a marketing trick, since many customers in the showroom check rear legroom with the front seat pushed all the way back.

Dash gets a dual-tone theme with the upper section in black and the lower in beige. Piano black and silver inserts have been thrown in. Cabin ergonomics are excellent:

All-round visibility is superior to the Dzire. The bonnet and its bulges are visible; many people like that. Dash isn't too high and shorter drivers will be comfortable as well:

Chunky 3-spoke steering wheel is amazing to hold. However, we miss the leather wrap that is now the trend. Gets thumb contours & slim piano black highlights. Horn pad is light to press, although those with shorter fingers might find it a bit of a stretch:

Left side houses controls for the music system & phone. The disconnect button doubles up as a back button on the models with the touchscreen. There is no pause or mute button on the steering - sucks because we find a lot of utility in that feature. That said, keep the volume (-) button pressed and it will decrease the sound to 0 in a couple of seconds. The buttons are clicky and offer good feedback, but their quality is mediocre:

Controls for the cruise control are on the right (offered only on the top VX variant). Honda missed a chance to offer it on the automatic variants, which is shocking because if anyone manages to use cruise control in India, it's most convenient with an AT. The only other car to offer this feature is the Volkswagen Ameo:

Zooming in on the piano black highlights. Also notice the different textures used:

Steering gets tilt adjustment, but nothing for reach. Do note that the base variant's steering is fixed:

Well-sized fonts, making it easy on the eyes. The white rings looks good and personally, I like them over the usual chrome. The meters neatly illuminate when you open the doors. Sad to note the missing temperature gauge. Only a warning light is provided:

This ugly stalk is used to change the trip meters as well as adjust the dashboard illumination. Turn it with the headlights on and it'll dim the backlight of the various buttons (including the A/C display). Looks terribly out of place on a 2018 car:

Needles do a full swipe when you start the car. We're honestly fed up of this as it's no longer a novelty. The instantaneous mileage and fuel level indicators also go from the lowest to the highest level and back! Since you're looking at the speedometer maxed out, I must add that the Amaze has an electronically-limited top speed of 140 km/h. This is either due to safety reasons, or to differentiate it from the more expensive cars with the same diesel motor:

V & VX get this bigger & better MID. MID displays all the required information including distance-to-empty, 2 trip meters and their (individual) average FE, clock, outside temperature and bars for the instantaneous fuel consumption + fuel level. No gearshift suggestions made:

The cluster's illumination can be adjusted in 6 levels. It also controls the backlight of the climate control system, engine start / stop button, driver's power window illumination etc.

All buttons & controls feel solid & durable, including these stalks. No automatic headlamps or rain sensing wipers provided (Dzire gets auto headlamps). Tap the indicator lightly and it activates the 'lane change' feature, causing the indicators to flash thrice. Foglamp control is on the light stalk itself:

The back of these stalks gets a nice recess for your index finger:

Engine start button gets a silver ring and sits to the right of the steering wheel. It glows red with the engine on or in accessory mode, and white when off:

Trapezoidal side air vent with a silver surround looks good. Side vents get air volume control as well:

Lone spot in a sea of blanks is occupied by the headlight leveller. Blanks sure look awful:

Fuel lid and bonnet release levers are located next to the footwell. Many a times, I accidentally opened the hood instead of the fuel lid:

Doorpads get a beige + black colour theme like the dashboard. The armrest gets black plastic which is preferred to prevent soiling. There's also a piano black insert which adds a premium touch. While no soft touch plastics are used, there are multiple textures of the same-coloured plastic to make it all look good. Compared to the last-gen car, there is absolutely no flex in the doorpads when the windows are rolled up or down:

Door handles are finished in a sweet silver and have a nice amount of weight to them. Car gets auto locking which is welcome. What's unwelcome is the auto-unlocking! Switch off the car (or put the AT in P) and the doors unlock. This makes us uncomfortable and isn't really suitable in crime-prone India. Don't miss the multiple material textures & colours in this pic:

Power window switches are borrowed from the City. The driver's window gets auto up & down functionality, with anti-pinch in the VX trim. In other variants, it is just auto down. Only the driver’s power window switch is illuminated. At the top are controls for the mirror adjustments. They can be folded electrically:

The black insert is a good idea as it won't get soiled easily. The beige area on the side gets fabric, but the base (black colour) doesn't. Its hard plastic gets uncomfortable over a longer period of resting your hand here (Dzire gives you a soft pad here):

Door pockets can hold a 1L bottle (over 1L too, depending on the bottle shape) and other odd items. The rear portion is not that wide and the back of it extends inside the doorpad. It is not very easy to get things out of there, but it is definitely better than the Dzire:

Door sill area isn't very wide, making ingress easy. Black sill protector has been provided on all four doors:

Front seats are a welcome departure from the old car. They are well-contoured and provide healthy support. Side bolstering gets sufficient padding and unlike some cars, it will not bother individuals with a healthy build. I felt the seats to be on the softer side though - they may not be ideal for long highway trips. The positioning of them is such that front occupants don't brush their arms. Adjustable neck restraints look very funky and are firmer than the seats. Fabric upholstery is of good quality:

Levers for the height and seatback angle are contoured to the shape of the seat base. They feel sturdy. Top 2 variants get height adjustment:

Fore and aft adjustment rod at the front is positioned slightly inside the seats:

Sufficient fore and aft movement. However, it is restricted at the back in a bid to not compromise the rear passenger's legroom. That said, it is enough for 6 footers:

Height adjustment range is also healthy. Finding your perfect driving position is easy:

Funky adjustable headrests:

Zooming in on the fabric upholstery to show you its design pattern:

Seatbelts with pretensioners & load limiters, but no height-adjustment. They are mounted at a position which will suit most occupants. We wish the seatbelts were in beige, yet will agree that black is more practical as it won't get dirty:

ABC pedals are properly spaced out. Though not a proper dead pedal, it is possible to comfortably rest one's left foot here:

Boot release lever is placed on the floor in the traditional position:

Amaze-branded floor mats are black in colour, as is the car's main carpeting below (grey'ish black). Easy to maintain:

ORVMs are sufficiently tall and wide:

IRVM is one size too small and doesn't cover the entire rear windscreen. Honda also missed an opportunity to provide auto-dimming here like the VW Ameo:

Average visibility while reversing. Tapering roof and tall boot contribute to this. The rear door's quarter glass helps things a bit, however reversing aids are a must. Parking sensors are standard even on the base variant, while the top model gets a reversing camera as well:

A look at the centre fascia. It is slightly tilted towards the driver:

Centre air vents are trapezoidal and look similar to the ones in the Dzire, except for being mounted upside-down (link):

7-inch touchscreen system gets Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. The Digipad 2.0 system comes equipped with Bluetooth, USB and inbuilt Navigation. More details in a dedicated post later. Don't miss the generous application of piano black here:

Climate control system will chill you to the bone! Honda says they've beefed up the air-con system and we totally buy it. Even on a hot day, the air-con managed to keep the cabin c-o-l-d. "Max cool" button is useful if you come to your car after it has been parked in the sun for runs the air-con on full blast. However this, along with the rear defogger, isn't available on the lower variants. Rotary control knobs feel nice to use:

The panel in front of the cupholders houses one USB port and a 12V socket. Top variant gets 2 USB ports here; very flimsy - the panel easily flexes, even with a light push:

Two cup-holders. On top is a shallow cubby for your smartphone. We preferred to park our phones in the deeper cup-holders though:

Below the handbrake is another storage area. At the tail-end of the center console is a bottle-holder that rear passengers can use too:

Another look at the space, now with the handbrake lever pulled up - iPhone 5S for scale. Also notice the ribbed texture of the handbrake lever. Its release button is butter-smooth to operate:

The same piano black pattern is present in front of the passenger to keep things from getting boring. Dual front airbags are standard across the variants:

Actual glovebox is smaller than the lid would have you believe. Still, the space inside is adequate. Single card holder on the right side looks like an afterthought. There are several reports of the glovebox being so ill-fitted that it pops open on bumpy roads. This is not the top-quality Honda of the 1990s (a certain Fernando Alonso would agree):

If there is only one cabin light provided, its best if it is mounted in the centre like the one on the Amaze. Why? So that front & rear passengers, both, can use it. This wouldn't be the case if the single cabin light was mounted above the IRVM:

Driver's sunvisor looks cheap! It doesn't even get a ticket holder. Passenger-side sun visor gets a mirror, but no cover or illumination:

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:15.
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Interior - Rear

Doors open in a dual-stage action at the rear and they come out sufficiently wide. The roof starts tapering only at the rear part of the door, thereby maximising the space for entry:

Gap between the B-pillar and the seat is sufficient, making stepping in and out easier (for your feet):

Door sill is not too wide so as to cause any discomfort while entering or exiting the car, but it is more than the Dzire. The Amaze gets these small black scuff plates at the back; all the better to protect the paint:

Like the front, the rear doorpads get a dual-tone beige and black theme. Notice the missing piano black insert. Fabric strip next to the armrest has been provided:

Rear doors get a big bottle holder (can hold 1+ liter bottles) and a small storage area next to it. The base is quite a bit smaller than the top and the back is sloped, limiting the utility to small items only. Don't miss the recess on the floor to hold a bottle in place:

Contoured seat with a comfortable recline angle. Only 2 fixed headrests are provided which sucks - Dzire gives you adjustable neck restraints at the back which are safer:

Compared to the outgoing car, the rear seats are wider. However, this is not a car which can seat 3 occupants at the rear due to the curved outer edges & raised middle area. This seat is best for 2 adults and a kid. Black seatbelts look ugly, they should have been in a matching beige like the Dzire (reference image):

The car's wheelbase has increased, so legroom is naturally fantastic. Two 6-footers, one behind the other? No problem. This is the max & min legroom:

The front seats are raised, allowing rear passengers to comfortably slide their feet below them. The bottom is covered in a soft fabric that will not hurt the shin area:

Seats are scooped to release more legroom at the back:

Even if the front seats are moved all the way back, 6-footer me can comfortably sit behind. While driving, I set the seat 2 notches further ahead than this. The seat offers sufficient cushioning and I found the under-thigh support to be fair. On the flip side, headroom is way too limited for tall folk. See how there is barely any space left between the top of my head and the roof of the car!!! My hair was brushing against the roof liner. The seatback angle is set at a relaxed position, but the seats are on the softer side ~ meaning less support on long journeys. The fixed headrests are nowhere near the occupants. They are softer than the seats and shorter passengers could possibly rest their head on them. For most people though, the headrests are useless:

Big front headrests obstruct the frontal visibility of rear passengers:

If required, they can be removed completely for the chauffeur-driven owners. Don't ever do this if there is someone sitting on the seat though:

Armrest is soft, wide and comfortable to use. Two cupholders are provided:

The armrest slopes downward and rests on the seatbase. Notice the imperfect fitting of the cupholder unit. This is not the 'Honda' we have known:

ISOFIX child seat anchors are present on both sides and offered as standard on all variants. Pull the piece of fabric to access the anchors:

Top tethers for the ISOFIX get a flap, revealing the body-coloured mounting point (it's attached to the monocoque of the car):

Parcel tray cannot be used to store things due to the slope and missing lip. We prefer this as it prevents passengers from keeping things here which block the driver's view, and slide around on corners:

Glass area lets in a good amount of light. This, combined with the beige colour, gives a feeling of roominess to passengers:

Rear window doesn't go all the way in though. This is the max opening:

Wide seatback pocket spans the entire width of the front seat. It is not that deep however. Has been provided on both front seats:

Fixed grab handles only, no spring-loaded units in the Amaze. No coat / bag hook either:

12V power socket and a bottle holder for rear passengers. Rear air-con vents missing (Dzire gets them). Though the Honda's A/C is powerful and cools the cabin in a jiffy, a rear blower helps to equalize the temperature across the cabin:

Floor hump isn't a bother. Kids could rest their feet on it. However, taller occupants will prefer to keep their legs on either side (black center console can intrude into their foot space):

Beige roof gets a centrally-mounted cabin lamp. If there is just a single lamp, it's best to place it between the seats so that front & rear passengers alike can use it. Look closely and you'll see an off-center button on the roof moulding - sure sticks out like a sore thumb:

Boot space has gone up by 20 litres to 420 litres. Rivals offer 378L (Dzire), 419L (Tigor), 407L (Xcent) & 330L (Ameo) boots. Nope, the rear seat doesn't fold down:

Naked underside of the boot screams cheap, but then, no one other than the Tigor (image link) gives you any cladding here! But it really looks ugly here, especially the numberplate lights:

Nifty illumination lamp. Also notice the exposed HMSL bulb and the module for parking sensors (black box below):

Honda offers a 14-inch steel spare shod with 175/70 rubber (regular tyres are 175/65 R15). Lower variants get 175/65 R14 tyres (same as their regular 4 tyres):

Emergency tool kit consists of the standard tyre-changing tools and a warning triangle. It is packed neatly in a cloth bag:

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:13.
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In-Car Entertainment

The top spec (VX) variant gets Honda's Digipad 2.0 system. It is an updated version of the one found in the Honda City. The system plays music via 4 speakers, one on each door of the car. Importantly, it now supports Android Auto & Apple CarPlay. Connectivity options include Bluetooth and USB inputs, but there is no AUX. Can play videos too. A handy remote control is bundled with the car for chauffeur-driven owners, however it was missing in our test car.

Honda logo is displayed every time the system is turned on. Notice that it has physical buttons on the side (including a 'back' button) - we like this versus a full touchscreen which isn't convenient to use while driving:

All speakers are mounted on the doors. Though it doesn't get tweeters, audio quality is satisfactory. Honda's OEM speaker quality is usually better than say, what Maruti uses:

Rear speakers are smaller than the front ones:

7-inch touchscreen interface consists of 8 big tiles, each directing the user to the different functions of the system:

Swipe the screen and a user-configurable display comes up (Wi-Fi option is just a shortcut, the system doesn't come with any Wi-Fi module)...

...which can have widgets as per the owner's preferences:

The screen resolution is good and the healthy font size is easy on the eyes. No squinting required:

Sound settings include the usual stuff, and then some (e.g. mute while reversing). As we have seen in other Honda cars, the bass is good by OEM standards. Overall sound quality is satisfactory for a stock system, especially once you set the EQ up:

A quick look at the presets:

If you wish, a custom EQ can be set up as well. However, its best to keep these levels around the +4 mark to ensure good sound. Beyond that, the speakers shout for mercy:

This warning comes up every time you start the car. It won't go away till OK is pressed. Terribly annoying!

Satellite navigation is provided by NaviMaps (MapMyIndia):

Search options include well-thought defaults like parking, fuel pumps, banks & ATMs, airport and train stations, among others. Locations used the last time along with an option for history is also provided:

On-screen keyboard is large and easy to use. The search field prompts for suggestions based on the typed characters:

2 routes, along with their ETA are displayed to select from:

You can also add a place to 'My Places' (favourites) or set it as the home location. Don't miss the eLoc code in this pic (more information):

Bluetooth connectivity is simple. You can set which phones to auto connect. Devices can also be configured as a phone / media device or both:

Large keypad makes dialing easy:

Many people we called using this system reported very low volume or distorted audio. Very unexpected! Comparatively, the non-touch system's (from the lower variants) phone quality was much better:

Voice commands can be triggered using the button on the steering wheel. It will display all the available options and highlight the ones detected in yellow. This system works surprisingly well!

The infotainment system gets Apple CarPlay. Super convenient! However, I experienced a couple of hang-ups and had to restart the system to resume normal functioning:

Audio quality from Apple CarPlay was noticeably better than via Bluetooth (wired vs wireless, I guess):

Android Auto also makes its way to the system. Thanks to the ability to use Google Maps, it is more useful overall:

Familiar Google Maps offers much more usability than the onboard maps IMHO:

Reversing camera offers good resolution:

The grid lines (not adaptive) can be turned off if you so prefer:

Parking in dark spots or during the night won't be an issue, thanks to the good low-light camera performance:

A look at the camera settings:

Colour, brightness and contrast can be adjusted as well. Preview the changes before finalising the settings (so cool!). Further, with the preview, you can drive the car with the rear camera display turned on – the camera remained on during a 30 minute trip :

Top VX variant gets an extra port (1.5A) for faster mobile charging as well as to connect your smartphone to the system:

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:12.
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Old 30th July 2018, 12:59   #7
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Driving the 1.5L Diesel CVT

At the outset, I'd like to make one thing clear. If you want to buy a diesel automatic in this price band, just get the Amaze Diesel CVT. Enough said - it is the segment best engine + gearbox combination. While its competitors offer smaller engines mated to horribly jerky AMTs, the CVT is butter-smooth . The AMT & CVT are polar opposites in the smoothness department. A CVT is smoother than even torque-converter & dual-clutch ATs.

This is the first Honda Diesel CVT in the world. But Honda's taken a shortcut. Instead of developing an entirely new AT for their diesel engine, they have simply picked up their existing petrol CVT & mated it to the diesel. That's precisely why the 1.5L diesel has been detuned for the CVT (79 BHP @ 3,600 rpm and torque of 160 Nm @ 1,750). The CVT couldn't handle the additional torque, especially over 100,000+ km of ownership. It is down on power by 20 BHP and 40 Nm from its manual counterpart. The power-to-weight ratio is 77 BHP / ton, while the torque-to-weight ratio is 155 Nm / ton. Neither is impressive; however, on paper specs don't paint the real picture here.

Honda has priced the Amaze diesel CVT at Rs. 8.40 lakhs (S) and Rs. 9.00 lakhs (V), which is at a premium of Rs. 50,000 over the Dzire AMT. It is completely worth the extra $$$ because the engine & gearbox are both superior! That said, Honda has goofed up by not offering the Diesel AT in the top VX variant. We won't complain too much though as 2 of the main missing features (touchscreen ICE, reversing camera) can be installed in the aftermarket, while the other major one (cruise control) isn't something you'd frequently use in India. We feel that Honda has refrained from bringing a Diesel CVT VX only to avoid 'sticker shock' at launch, and the variant will be introduced in due time. Top variants are most profitable & Honda India isn't known to let a rupee of profit slip by. Until the 90s, Honda was run by engineers first, and bean counters later. We'll say that the bean counters probably have a majority of board seats today.

The gear shifter has 6 positions - P, R, N, D, S and L. To start the car, the gear shifter has to be in P or N position with the driver's foot on the brake pedal. The engine can, however, be turned off in any gear. The MID will prompt you to move the gear to P after shut down if its in another position. Vibrations are minimal, but there is noticeable body shake when turning the engine on and off.

The Amaze CVT moves on seamlessly from a standstill. Throttle response when starting off is very good for a CVT, thanks to the diesel's torque. In a sea of jerky AMTs, this smooth diesel CVT is a revelation - resulting in a stress-free drive. Reason? There are no actual gears being continuously engaged & disengaged in a CVT. Additionally, the Amaze creeps forward without any accelerator input; just put the car in D mode and release the brake pedal to crawl at ~6 km/h. In bumper to bumper traffic, you can drive the Amaze with only one pedal (i.e. the brake).

Driving in stop & go traffic, the torque of the diesel engine combined with the nice throttle response brings a lag-free experience. The larger motor masks the shortfalls of the CVT (rubber-band effect) to a large extent. It's only if you want instant go when the engine is lazying around that you'll observe the rubber-band trait. You won't know the engine is down on 20 BHP compared to the sure doesn't feel like it. The 1.5L diesel is very tractable and has a practical state of tune. The gearbox's operation is silent too. While the Amaze Petrol + CVT combo is rather mediocre, this Diesel CVT is damn good.

On the open road too, the Amaze is quick enough and you won't complain about the power deficit to the MT. Put your foot hard down, the engine revs to 3,500 - 3,700 rpm and the car picks up speed easily. Of course, because of the CVT transmission's inherent nature, the Amaze is best driven in an easy-to-moderate driving style, rather than an aggressive one. The motor does not rev that high anyway. While Honda petrols are known for their high revving nature, the diesel is the opposite (tops of ~4,000 rpm with the CVT). The engine has sufficient grunt to keep the Amaze running at triple digit speeds all day long with ease. Due to the punchy mid-range, overtaking isn't an issue either. However, there are times when the CVT's response time & rubber-band effect can catch you out, but it's not that frequent for anyone to complain. Noise? It's only when the driver gets very aggressive with the throttle that things get too noisy. The CVT's drone combined with the diesel clatter can get loud. Again, remember this isn't an engine + gearbox combination to drive like a DSG.

The Amaze cruises in an extremely calm manner at 100 km/h (2,000 rpm) & 120 (2,400 rpm). The same speeds in S mode though have the engine ticking over at 2,750 and 3,000 rpm respectively. Honda has limited the top speed of the Amaze to 140 km/h. Don't know whether this is due to safety reasons or to distinguish it from its more expensive siblings with the same engine.

The CVT has an "S" mode in which revs are held longer and the throttle feels sharper (due to the engine being in its power band more of the time). S mode is more fun and the one to pick when you're in a rush.

"L" mode comes in handy while going uphill or downhill. This mode enhances engine braking, reducing the load on the brakes, thus we strongly recommend it while descending ghats. The throttle's response time is almost instant; it is even better than in S mode! However, the gearing is too low to use this mode in any condition other than inclines & declines.

The Amaze diesel CVT's ARAI FE figure stands at 23.8 km/l. This engine is frugal and owners will be pleased with the economy. It'll be especially impressive by AT standards.

On the NVH front, the car definitely does better than the outgoing model. Engine noise has reduced compared to the old Amaze, but make no mistake, it is still noisy. What's more, the engine's tone is very agricultural (tractor-like) at high revvs. Owners won't complain about it as long as the revs are kept at normal levels; at high rpm, passengers will whine more than the CVT!!! On the highway, you'll prefer "D" mode as it keeps the revs (and thus, noise) lower. Wind noise starts creeping in from ~110 km/h and progressively increases as the speedometer climbs up. A little road noise starts in around 90 km/h, although it is not too intrusive. Rear passengers will hear the road noise too as the rear wheel wells don't get any cladding.

The Amaze was Honda's first diesel car in India, and it's now the company's first diesel automatic:

The engine bay looks tight & cramped:

Gets a much-needed insulation sheet under the bonnet:

Thick firewall insulation:

The Amaze diesel has underbody protection (petrol doesn't). It is not a metal plate, but the plastic should offer some protection from stray stones & the like:

Vertically-mounted intercooler peeks through the grille:

Fully covered ECU is mounted at a tall position to ensure maximum protection from the elements:

Fusebox cover gets a nifty tool to pull out blown fuses, but was missing spare ones in our test car!

Simple gear shifter. Honda has pulled off a master-stroke by mating the CVT to its 1.5L diesel:

Unlock button at the front:

P-R-N-D-S-L letters are not backlit. This sucks - cheap, cheap, cheap cost-cutting which you will especially hate at night (reference image, thanks to BHPian A.G.). Shifting between N-D doesn't require the unlock button to be pressed. Moving from D to S/L requires the unlock button, while shifting back from S/L to D/N doesn't. Moving in / out of P & R needs the unlock button as well as the brake pedal to be pressed:

The dead pedal is just a stick-on, yet one can comfortably rest their left foot here. The brake pedal is a size bigger than the one in the manual:

Gear position indicator on the MID. P & N get a vertical bracket around them:

S & L modes are displayed as well:

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:11.
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Old 30th July 2018, 12:59   #8
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Driving the 1.2L Petrol CVT

In the outgoing Amaze, the petrol CVT was rated for a little more power than its MT sibling. However, this time around, the engine makes 89 BHP @ 6,000 rpm & 110 Nm @ 4,800 rpm (same as the MT). The CVT is available in the middle 'S' variant as well as the 'V' variant, but not the top VX trim. Only the V variant gets the sweet paddle shifters.

Where the Diesel CVT (and even Diesel MT) was impressive, the Amaze Petrol CVT is just average. Don't get us wrong, it's a terrific urban commuter, but a bore on the highway. It wouldn't be our top choice in the segment. We'd put the Xcent petrol AT as the no.1, followed by the Aspire petrol AT. That said, the Amaze Petrol AT is far superior to the jerky AMTs from Maruti, Tata etc.

The gear shifter gets 5 positions – P, R, N, D and S in the "V" variant with paddle shifters; the "S" variant without paddle shifters gets an additional "L" position that's to be used for inclines & declines. The start-up process is the same as its diesel counterpart – gear shifter in P or N with the driver’s foot on the brake pedal.

Overall, the CVT feels competent in the urban jungle. To begin with, the seamless power delivery to the wheels (which is typical of CVTs) and the refined i-VTEC engine are incredibly relaxing within city limits. The Amaze CVT doesn't feel laggy here and there is sufficient grunt to get you moving. The response to throttle inputs is decent and the CVT is butter-smooth in traffic. With a light foot, the experience is refined, while noise levels are kept low. The Amaze does make for a great urban commuter.

As the road opens up, until mid-range accelerator inputs, NVH and the trademark 'rubber band effect' are controlled. Performance is reasonably peppy too. On the downside, start getting heavy with your accelerator inputs and the driving experience becomes awfully annoying. Kickdown response sometimes takes a good 2-3 seconds in ‘D’ mode and its best to prepare the car before your overtaking moves. On ghat sections, ‘D’ mode feels particularly lethargic and needs a heavy foot to get going (I preferred ‘S’ mode here). As we've seen with so many CVTs, there is a huge mismatch in engine revs and the actual road speed - you'll see the rpm needle climbing with no corresponding increase on the speedometer. Transmission whine is also audible when it's made to work hard.

The high-revving i-VTEC which is music to the ears in the MT starts to irritate with its noise in the CVT. CVTs usually perform better with larger engines / more torque and we saw that in the City 1.5 and Amaze Diesel; however, there's no escaping this rubber-band effect & resultant lag with a puny 1.2L petrol. The actual performance is acceptable and the Amaze CVT accelerates alright - the engine's strong top end is the saving grace, but I still didn't enjoy pushing this car due to the CVT's behaviour under heavy throttle input. The CVT is at home with a gentle & easy driving style only. You need to be a calm driver behind the wheel of this car. For travelling long distance, the CVT's ability to cruise in a relaxed manner is remarkable. The Amaze petrol cruises at an even lower rpm at the ton than its diesel sibling. 100 km/h comes up at just 1,750 rpm, while 120 km/h is seen at 2,500 rpm. The same speeds come up at 2,500 rpm and 3,250 rpm in ‘S’ mode. Top speed is restricted to 140 km/h in this variant as well.

'S' mode basically keeps the engine revs higher. 'S' mode can be very useful in preparing the car for overtaking (before actually making the overtaking move). It also gives you some more engine braking. But don't be fooled - this 'S' mode isn't sporty! For more control, it's best to use the paddle shifters. To engage manual mode, use the paddles when in S mode and the MID will show "M" with the current gear (actually, step) selected. In M mode, the gearbox will take the revs to ~6,000 rpm before upshifting. Use M mode for overtaking & engine braking. We found the paddle-shifter's response times to be decent. Do note that the paddle shifters can be used in 'D' mode too, although the gearbox goes back to full auto mode after a few seconds of not using the paddles.

The CVT should provide acceptable fuel economy in the city as long as you maintain a light right foot. Honda has tuned the gearbox for economy and it's very obvious from behind the wheel. The CVT keeps the revs as low as possible when driving normally. The CVT's ARAI rating has now gone up by 1 point to 19.0 kmpl. The main reason for this rating is the lower kerb weight compared to the outgoing car.

In terms of NVH, the cabin is refined at regular rpm levels & cruising speeds. Things do get loud after 3,000 rpm though. The enthusiast might like the sound of a high revving petrol engine, but regular Joes won't. Some wind & road noises are audible at 90 km/h and get louder after 100 km/h – main reason for this is the silent engine, which makes other noises heard (unlike in the diesel).

Note: We didn't get a chance to drive the petrol MT as it hasn't entered Honda's media fleet yet. The new car gets a minor bump up in power - 2 BHP and 1 Nm of torque with a lower kerb weight. Other than that, the driving experience should be similar to other Honda cars using the 1.2L MT. For reference, go through the Petrol MT reviews in this post and this one. In summary, the petrol MT is smooth, fun, quick & economical; however, its in-city driveability is strictly average & you will need to downshift more than in the Dzire.

i-Vtec makes 89 BHP & 110 Nm. Lots more empty spaces compared to its diesel sister:

Petrol engine misses out on the hood insulation:

Firewall insulation is thick – same as that of the diesel:

No underbody protection! This screams cheap, especially since the diesel gets a cover here:

The only distinguishing badge to identify the petrol from the diesel:

The ‘V’ trim of the petrol CVT line-up gets these brushed-silver paddle shifters. They are at a good position and easy to operate – pull the right one to upshift and left one to downshift. In case the car doesn’t agree with your command, it will simply blink the selected step / gear:

Right paddle gets this nice groove on the back (left one doesn't):

Same shifter as the diesel:

Nope, the markers aren't illuminated:

Currently selected step / gear is displayed in manual mode:

Last edited by GTO : 31st July 2018 at 22:49. Reason: L mode indeed available, but on S variant. Correcting
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Old 30th July 2018, 13:00   #9
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Driving the 1.5L Diesel MT

The Amaze MT makes more power than the CVT (reasons outlined in the post above). Power ratings are 99 BHP @ 3,600 rpm and 200 Nm @ 1,750 rpm.

As opposed to the Honda i-VTEC petrols we know, this 1.5L i-DTEC focuses entirely on low-end power delivery. Simply put, in-city driveability is outstanding. Turbo lag is nearly inexistent, with the diesel motor responding well from idle rpms itself. Power delivery is linear in comparison to our national engine, the 1.3L MJD. That also means there is none of that sudden punch at 1,800 - 2,000 rpm though. The engine has an incredibly tractable nature and within town, you only need to give it light accelerator inputs to potter about. The 1.5L moves away from crawling speeds in 2nd without breaking into a sweat, and even passes the 2nd gear speed-breaker test with flying colours. Throttle response at <2,000 rpm is satisfactory, unlike some of its competitors who are still waiting for the turbo to start spooling. When driving in slow traffic, we are constantly shifting between the 1st & 2nd ratios, and this is exactly where the Amaze blows the Dzire away. In-city driveability is a highlight of the engine...the 1.3L MJD-powered competition just can't compete in this area (note: Ford's 1.5L TDCi is as competent). When traffic conditions are less dense, you could use 3rd gear as an automatic from 25 km/h up all the way to 100+ kmph. Though you feel the engine generating peak torque past 1,800 rpm, there is no turbo kick that the 1.3L MJD-powered cars give you.

With a power-to-weight ratio that is even better than the outgoing car, thanks to the lesser kerb weight, the Amaze offers enjoyable performance on the open road. With that slick-shifting gearshift, it's more fun than the CVT for sure. Straight line acceleration is peppy, with the engine feeling noticeably more muscular than the Dzire's. The Amaze is easily capable of keeping up with most C2 segment sedans on the highway. The engine has solid grunt and overtaking fast vehicles is effortless. You don't have to worry about turbo lag catching you out in the middle of an overtaking manouveur either. This motor isn't as high-rpm friendly as the 1.3L MJD though. The i-DTEC revvs to a max of ~4,400 rpm and it sounds like a tractor when doing that! There's no point in taking the revvs that high; it's best to upshift at 4,000 rpm tops. Long distance cruiseability is fair. 100 km/h is seen @ 2,250 rpm in 5th gear and 120 @ 2,750 rpm (both higher than the CVT though).

Conversely, if you maintain a light foot and go easy on the revs (1,500 - 1,800 rpm range), the green ECO sign lights up on the meter console, indicating an economical driving style. A variety of parameters (including current gear, speed, road incline etc.) are considered by the ECU for the ECO mode. Low turbo-lag cars usually record high fuel economy figures within the city as there is no need to unnecessarily revv, and the Amaze is no different. The ARAI claimed fuel economy is 27.4 km/l. It is lower than the Dzire's 28.40 km/l, but compared to the outgoing car, it has increased by 1.6 km/l. This is mostly due to the lower kerb weight.

The short throw gearbox with well-defined gates is an absolute joy to use. However, the jelly-like rubber boot cover jiggles around every time you shift. This feels cheap. The clutch isn't a bother to use either.

While the overall NVH levels have improved from the earlier car, it is still not as good as the competition. To begin with, the engine start / stop process is far from seamless. This is especially so at engine shutdown where there is significant shake felt in the cabin, as the engine rocks about on its mounts. Way too much, and constant vibrations are felt on the clutch pedal even on the move. This is something Honda should have sorted out. Takes away from the NVH experience. Of course, other than the pedals, vibrations aren't present anywhere else in the car and passengers won't be complaining at all. Engine noise has reduced compared to the old Amaze, but make no mistake, it is still noisy. What's more, the engine's tone is very agricultural (tractor-like) at high revvs. Owners won't complain about it as long as the revs are kept at normal levels; at high rpm, they will. Wind noise starts creeping in from ~110 km/h and progressively increases as the speedometer climbs up. A little road noise starts in around 90 km/h, although it is not too intrusive. Rear passengers will hear the road noise too as the rear wheel wells don't get any cladding.

Sweet gear-shifter is great to hold & use. Honda intentionally hasn't given the 6-speed MT of the City as it wants to keep that car's position as the more premium (City doesn't have a 140 kmph speed limiter either):

This rubber cover jiggles like jelly, every time you shift gears. Feels cheap IMHO:

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:04.
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Old 30th July 2018, 13:00   #10
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Ride & Handling

The Amaze gets a McPherson strut suspension setup at the front and a torsion bar setup at the rear. It is overall compliant and Honda has clearly prioritized comfort while tuning the hardware. Bump absorption is good & even backseat passengers will remain comfortable. On bad roads, the suspension can get a bit jiggly, but it's not excessive. The suspension also operates without loud clunks or squeaks.

Highway ride quality is absorbent as well & you will like it. However, the rear isn't "tight"; on undulating roads, it can get bouncy (reminded GTO of his Civic). With a full load of passengers & luggage, the rear suspension can bottom out on uneven patches too. Honda really needs to learn how to tune its rear suspensions.

In terms of handling, the Amaze behaves as you'd expect of a family sedan. It's safe & neutral, but not a corner carver. High speed stability is satisfactory and it can tour at 120 kmph all day long. Doesn't feel overtly nervous or twitchy at speed. Around corners, the grip levels are safe and with a regular driving style, no one will complain. Enthusiasts however will find the car sliding, and that's entirely down to it being under-tyred IMHO. The 175 mm tyres are too skinny for a car with almost 100 BHP on tap. Plus, these Bridgestone Ecopia tyres are designed more toward economy & longevity. An upgrade to wider + grippier rubber is definitely recommended if you hit the highway often. Body roll is as expected from a sedan of this segment - controlled under normal conditions, obvious under fast cornering. In summary, we will say that the mass market will like this suspension's ride & handling behaviour.

We found the electric power steering to be on the heavier side & were frankly surprised at its heft. Customers don't like heavy steerings. Plus, the return-to-center action in our test cars was too aggressive. Well, Honda has just released a fix for it (related news) and it appears that our test cars had something wrong with them. Customer car EPS' should be okay, just like in the outgoing Amaze. The steering is direct and feedback is par for the course. At times on the highway though, we found the steering's feel to be vague.

The Amaze petrol gets a tight turning radius of 4.7 meters, while the diesel gets a slightly wider one of 4.9. Both of them are easy to manoeuvre in tight spaces. The unladen ground clearance is rated @ 170 mm. Despite going on some really bad roads, we never scraped the underbody anywhere. That said, we never had a full load of passengers and luggage either. BHPian ownership reports will tell the real-world story.

The brakes work as expected; nothing to complain about, nothing to write home about. There is no drama under hard braking and the car stops in a straight line. The brakes have sufficient stopping power, but it's not what we would call 'excellent'. You'll want more bite, especially if you are driving the Automatics fast. Furthermore, the pedal needs to be pressed slightly more than usual (caught us out once or twice). ABS + EBD is standard on all variants of the Amaze.

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:08.
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Old 30th July 2018, 13:00   #11
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Other Points

• The world premiere of the Honda Amaze was at the 2018 Auto Expo (related thread). BHPian Jayakrishnan_v was the first to leak the variant details later in May.

• Driver armrest isn't standard but is available as an official accessory. Check it out in BHPian A.G.'s car here.

• The Amaze is based on a new (low cost??) platform that has been developed for the emerging markets. It will soon be used in future cars from the Thailand R&D center, including a crossover.

• Will we see a Brio-hatchback version of this car? We should. The product is competent and a hatchback variant will do far better than the current Brio. Honda might name it differently though as brand 'Brio' is a flop.

• The Amaze has upped its game and the market has rewarded it. Last two month's factory dispatches have been 9,789 and 9,130 units respectively. This is the best selling Honda till date.

• Diesel CVT misses out on the paddle shifters & gets an "L" mode, while it's the other way around with the petrol CVT. We agree with the diesel not getting paddle shifters as it's anyway not a high-revving engine, but the petrol could definitely have used that "L" mode for climbing up tough inclines.

• Honda has already initiated a recall for the heavy steering wheel. Check if your car is a part of this on the company website.

• 35L fuel tank is retained; it's one of the smallest in the segment.

• The doors auto-lock at 20 km/h as you move along. They also auto-unlock when you switch the car off (or engage "P" in the AT)! This is highly undesirable in theft-prone India. Makes us worried.

• Pull (just) the driver's door handle from inside and all the doors will unlock automatically.

• Don't like that fat chrome grille? Neither do we. BHPian Junky has a better-looking solution here. Looks so much classier.

• Standard warranty of 3 years / unlimited km. Extended warranty for up to 5 years / unlimited km available (we always recommend it!).

• BHPian PPS points out that Honda hasn’t even provided a joystick for ORVM adjustment in the base variants! Base variant owners are seriously treated like second-class citizens by manufacturers (it might be recollected that the Innova GX costing 17 big ones on the road doesn't even get an audio head-unit!).

• Waiting periods for the diesel CVT have gone up to 10 weeks. Honda knows what the target market wants and they have delivered.

• Horn is louder than you'd expect on the inside!

• Thanks to BHPian Kautilya for sharing information on this Touchscreen Head-Unit Upgrade (for those buying lower variants).

• We're intrigued by how the Amaze gets this deadly Diesel + CVT combination, but its more expensive siblings (especially the City) don't. Advantage Amaze, we say.

• BHPian A.G. says "the keyfob cannot be locked inside the vehicle (including the trunk) – the doors won't lock / the trunk will open itself if it detects the key inside".

• Disclaimer: Honda invited Team-BHP for the Amaze test-drive. They covered all the travel expenses for this driving event.

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:07.
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Old 30th July 2018, 13:00   #12
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The Smaller yet Significant Things

Service interval of 10,000 km / 1 year (older car was launched with a 6-month interval). The company also offers a maintenance package for 3 years / 30,000 km starting at Rs. 7,301 for the Petrol MT, going up to Rs. 13,277 for the Diesel AT. Additionally, a handy service cost calculator is provided on its website:

Honda has unnecessarily complicated things. When upsizing tyres, it is generally recommended to stay within 2% of the overall diameter (3% tops, but <2% is best). Look at Honda - a whopping 4.4% difference between the tyre sizes of the lower & top variants!! Among other things, the speedometer would need to be calibrated differently for them. 175/60 R15 would have been ideal as the difference would be ~1%. The main benefit to Honda's arrangement is that the sidewall height is more here (hence no compromise in ride quality). Image source is 1010 Tyres:

A glance at the lower variant's double-din ICE. Gets Bluetooth, USB & AUX:

Shift lock requires you to insert the skeleton key inside the slot to circumvent the gear lock. It can be used when the car is parked on an incline and you can’t move the lever out of 'P'. The shift lock feature could also be used when towing the vehicle:

Key has been lifted from the City's parts bin:

Fit and finish have some holes that need to be filled. Just see these uneven panel gaps around the glovebox. Also, the glovebox in one of our test cars kept opening up on bad roads!

Yuck! What a messy strut mount area. Just see how that sealant-type material has been applied. Looks like it was done at a local workshop and not in a Japanese company's factory!

The headlamps of our brand new test car had already started fogging up:

Headlights have noticeably improved over the outgoing car. The low beam + foglamps offer adequate coverage of the area in front:

High beam throw has good length. Despite taking this picture in twilight conditions, the throw of light is clearly visible (notice the light on the trees in the median):

ORVMs are biker friendly and turn the other way if the car gets side-swiped:

35L fuel tank is carried over (same as the Tata Tigor). Dzire gets a 37L tank, while others offer 40+ L:

Front wheel wells get some cladding...

...but there is nothing for the rear wheel wells:

The recommended tyre pressures:

VIN stamped in the driver's floor area. Another VIN & engine number plate is located on the passenger-side B-Pillar:

Cruise control lights in action. Also notice the "ECO" sign which comes on whenever you are driving in a fuel-efficient manner:

This warning light comes up if you shut off the engine without the AT gear lever in Park. It also lights up if you try to start the car when the gear is not in "P":

Walk away with the key with the engine running, and this message is displayed on the MID:

OBD port is located in the driver's footwell. Cabin fusebox is seen behind it. Things aren't as neat & organised here as we see in Hyundais:

Small vents ahead of the front wheel. Do these channel air from the front of the car?

Aero flaps placed ahead of the front tyres... well as the rear ones:

We used photoshop here to remove the lights on the boot. Do the tail-lamps then look familiar? Yep, somewhat like the Dzire's (reference image). Those reflective lights on the boot lid were needed to clearly distinguish this car from the Dzire:

Diesel clearly mentioned thrice, and we aren't complaining. Spill protector provided:

Our test car was wearing the Radiant Red shade. Seen here is Lunar Silver Metallic...

...Modern Steel Metallic...

...Golden Brown Metallic (Credit: BHPian Scorpion_blore (Life with my 'Brownie' - The 2018 Honda Amaze Diesel CVT))...

...and White Orchid Pearl (Credit: BHPian AnkitAnimesh (Honda Amaze @ Auto Expo 2018. Now launched at Rs 5.60 lakhs)):

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:33.
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Old 30th July 2018, 13:34   #13
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Re: Honda Amaze : Official Review

Thread moved from the Assembly Line to Official Reviews. Thanks for sharing, rating thread 5 stars! This is your 1st full official review of a brand new car and you've hit it out of the park, Blackwasp.

Honda has made major strides with this new Amaze and as a result, it's better in every department over the old car. I like its all-rounded nature and that Diesel + CVT is simply fantastic. I wouldn't be surprised if someone has the budget for a C2 sedan, yet picks the Amaze Diesel AT for its smoothness & efficiency. Equally, I see a few B2 hatchback customers stretching their budgets for this variant. Smooth Diesel ATs are a rare breed under 10 lakhs (jerky AMTs dominate the list).

There used to be a time where you could blindly recommend one car over the other, but today, it's entirely dependent on the engine + transmission. As an example, within the compact sedan space, my choices would be:

Diesel AT = Amaze (no contest…the smoothest)
Diesel MT = Aspire or Amaze or Ameo (it's all about the engine, baby!)
Petrol MT = Dzire or Xcent
Petrol AT = Xcent (Smooth torque converter with a sweet 1.2L)

3-year unlimited km warranty, extendable to 5-years & unlimited km
Brilliant! Am sure they saw that less than 1% of their private car owners did over 1 lakh km in 5 years and thus, offering it was totally worth the marketing benefits. They for sure won't offer this to Uber / Ola cabs who do ~60,000 kms in 1 year though.

Last edited by GTO : 30th July 2018 at 13:39.
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Old 30th July 2018, 13:48   #14
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Re: Honda Amaze : Official Review

Amazing level of detail on this review @blackwasp. Sorry about the pun though, it could have been better.

The Amaze does look like an outstanding workhorse for most of us struggling with knee/ calf/ ankle/ back pain on our increasingly torturous commutes.
No wonder the diesel CVT is already running months of waiting periods. I hope this doesn't mean that Honda India again puts their heads where the sun does not shine.
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Old 30th July 2018, 14:06   #15
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Re: Honda Amaze : Official Review

Brilliant review, Kanad. Like GTO mentioned, you have hit the ball out of the park with your first official review.

I got a chance to drive the Amaze 1.5 i-DTEC CVT the other day and I absolutely echo your thoughts. The diesel CVT is a perfect combination in the segment. It might not have a great top-end, but it makes maximum sense for urban usage thanks to the minimal turbo-lag and the convenience of an automatic transmission.
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