2000 km with the 2023 Verna 1.5L Turbo, our Vento 1.6 TDI replacement

Straight-line stability is on par with our Ford Figo 1.5 TDCI and the car feels more comfortable than our Honda City 1.5 P CVT.

BHPian TN07 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Got our Hyundai Verna 1.5 Turbo 3 weeks ago as a replacement for our 9-year-old Vento 1.6 TDI and it will be used alongside a Ford Figo 1.5 TDCI and a Honda City 1.5 P CVT in our garage.

I've clocked 2k kilometers so far and here are a few observations in comparison to the three cars mentioned above:

Engine, Drive Modes & Gearbox

The engine is extremely refined and NVH levels are well controlled (except on cold start when you can feel a little bit of vibration for about 45 seconds similar to a 3-cylinder engine). In terms of acceleration and outright performance, the car is sublime. There is almost zero lag, It accelerates in a linear manner even when floored and isn't like the turbo-charged engines I've driven but best believe that it will get to triple digits speed before you even know it and will continue to pull without breaking a sweat.

In city conditions, it's best driven in 'D' since the 'S' drive mode keeps the revs really high (and holds them) which isn't ideal. But out on an open road the 'S' mode sure does liven things up, the steering is heavier and the throttle response is a lot sharper.

The transmission is smooth and not jerky at all. Both the upshifts as well as the downshifts are very well masked but if you are an extremely keen observer you will notice (ever so slightly) the car moving through the gears. Also, When you floor the throttle, the car hesitates for a split second before it selects and engages a gear but this can be negated through the paddles. But overall Hyundai has done a very good job with the DCT.

Ride Quality, Handling & Steering Feedback

At low city speeds the Verna really does shine. The suspension is well-sorted and almost all bumps are absorbed. There are no "Thuds" so to speak when compared to the Vento and it is more comfortable than the Honda City.

At higher speeds the car has served me well. Straight line stability is very impressive and on par with Figo and the Vento. Around the corners is where I've noticed some body roll when compared to those two cars but it isn't off-putting or scary even when the car is going at a fairly decent clip. Most people will be right to expect less body roll in a low-slung car and Hyundai could've stiffened things up but for a small commuter sedan it more than gets the job done and if I hadn't been driving our Vento or Figo for so long I wouldn't have really noticed it.

The 2-Spoke Steering wheel doesn't bother me too much in terms of aesthetics but it is extremely light for the most part in the 'Eco' and the 'D' mode. It does weigh up in the 'S' mode as you would expect but is nothing to write home about. All things aside, the leather wrap on the steering wheel is good and does feel great to hold.

Interiors & Ergonomics

Interiors feel contemporary and everything is where you would expect it to be except for the driver-side power window controls which are placed too far ahead and I often at times just end up lowering the rear windows. Really a shame in a cabin which otherwise is very ergonomic.

Besides that, Storage is plenty, AC is effective, front seats are wide, supportive and offer good thigh support, rear seats are reclined at a nice angle and the overall glass area is pretty good but the City definitely feels more airy and comfortable in the back but not by much. Yes, plastics are scratchy and a step down from our Vento (but other than the plastic quality the interiors are a huge step up) but at this price point I don't know If I can expect anything else.

The twin-screen setup is easy to get used to and the infotainment unit is very very slick. The speakers are also a notch above what I've experienced in cars that belong to the same segment. The driver's instrument cluster while not being a fancy fully digital unit gives me pretty much all the information that I need but the TPMS readings are sometimes a bit wonky.

Issues Encountered

A week after taking delivery of the car I noticed the steering was off-centre and it had to be pointed slightly to the right for the car to go straight. If I centred it, the car pulled to the left almost instantaneously. The car has undergone an alignment today and will be interesting to see if it happens again.

Other Areas that could've been slightly better

  • Wireless Carplay would have been nice to have from the very beginning and hopefully, Hyundai releases its update soon.
  • Power window controls (like I had already mentioned) are too far ahead for my liking.
  • While everything is backlit in the cabin (which is great)- the ORVM controls and the fuel lid release control are not and I don't really understand why, to be honest.
  • On the exterior front, LED turn indicators/ reversing lights along with the rear brake calipers painted red (like the front) would have been nice additions but oh well what's a small sedan without cost-cutting?
  • The creep function could have been stronger. I'm definitely not asking for the lunging behavior of VW's 1.0's TC unit but somewhere in between would have been nice since the car requires throttle input to go over even the tiny inclines.

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