Chevrolet has crafted funky interiors for the Beat. It gets a digital tachometer, with a centre console that fuses well with the entire theme of looking young. The second row knee room and the boot are a bit of problem on the Beat, else everything else is well sorted.
The Beat is trendy on the inside, and the interiors have been designed to attract those young at heart. The Beat gets a digital tachometer and a cool blue backlit speedometer dial that makes the design look futuristic. The touch and feel of the plastics is decent and the overall fit and finish of the plastics is good for the price tag it comes for.
There is have sufficient head room and leg room for the front passengers and at the rear, though the Beat is a bit tight on knee room in the second row. It comes embellished with airbags, ABS, in-dash music system and alloys. The number of brownies on the Beat is good enough for the total moolah you pay.
PS: PS is the entry-level model of the Chevrolet Beat. In the PS avatar, the Beat gets tachometer, HVAC, full fabric seats and manually adjustable ORVMs.
LS: The LS gets ORVMs on each side, silver instrument cluster, passenger side vanity mirror, rear parcel tray, front power windows, rear split-fold seats, day and night IRVM and central locking.
LT: This is the top of the line version, and it comes loaded with all the bells and whistles. It gets integrated music system with USB connectivity and four speakers, auto AC, sunglass holder, rear power windows, ABS, dual airbags and front fog lamps, apart from gets ORVMs on each side, silver instrument cluster, passenger side vanity mirror, rear parcel tray, front power windows, rear split-fold seats, day and night IRVM and central locking that are available on the LS.
The 1.2-litre petrol engine of the Beat has performance, while the diesel has economy. Both target different set of audience. For power and less driving, the petrol is ideal and those who travel more especially in the city, diesel is the pick of the lot.
Under the sculpted hood of the Beat, lies a three-pot 936cc mill— which is actually the 1.3-litre multijet minus the one cylinder. This engine is fairly refined and the regular diesel clatter surprisingly has been muted. The engineers at General Motors have scrupulously tuned for low levels of vibrations even at idle, despite it being a three-cylinder. The power delivery is fairly linear and there is not much of what we call as turbo lag. The engine lacks the punch which is needed for overtaking and once out on an open road, the engine feels the need for more power. The 5-speed manual transmission is slick with the throws are positive. Even the gear knob is small and easy to grab. The ARAI claimed figure for the Beat diesel is 25.44kmpl.
Beat gets the 1.2-litre engine from the Chevrolet’s S-Tec II spectrum that churns out about 80bhp of power and a 108Nm of respectable torque. The noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) levels are low, just like any other modern petrol engine. The power delivery is fairly linear, but for overtaking one needs to downshift. When out on the highway, the engine feels a bit out of steam. The engine comes mated to 5-speed manual transmission and the gearshifts on are a wee bit rubbery.
The ride of the Beat is fairly smooth and composed; the secondary ride is a bit jittery at higher speeds. Being a tall boy, the Beat handles well when driven within city limit speeds. The steering is also weigh up well, as the speed increases.
All the cars in this segment have a sorted ride as the suspension doesn’t jiggle and disturb the peace of the occupants. Road undulations are well-taken care by the suspension. The Beat has decent ride suppleness as it underpins the softest suspension set-up that glides over potholes.
The handling is the only aspect which differs on the three. The suspension set-up is the soft on the Beat. Drive it quickly around a bend and you shall notice the body roll as this hatchback lack the dynamism that other competition possesses. Handling of the Beat is decent, but the skinny tyres reduce confidence as they run out of grip and tend to under steer. The steering wheel feels a bit numb and it isn’t joy to push it around bends.
Ritz is based on the platform of the old Swift, but being a tall boy there is sufficient space on the inside. The fit and finish of the plastic is also decent and the bells and whistles on the offering are good. There isn’t much to complain about the Ritz, except the fact that it now looks aged when compared to competition.
Most of these cars are trendy on the inside, and are built to attract those young at heart. The Ritz gets a separate tachometer and a huge dial, which makes it look funky. The touch and feel of the plastics is decent and the overall fit and finish of the plastics is good for the price tag it comes for.
There is sufficient headroom and legroom for the front passengers and at the rear the Beat is a bit tight on knee room. With Ritz and Beat being a tallboy design, they offer the better head space than the Brio.
LXi/LDi: This is the entry-level model for the petrol and diesel engines with features like 60:40 folding rear seat, cup holder in console, ashtray, iCATS, child lock, power steering, manual air conditioner, body coloured bumpers, internally adjusted ORVMs, green tinted glass windows, roof antenna, double horn, etc.
VXi/VDi: This is the mid-variant that sits above the LXi/LDi and it gets features like fabric insert on door trims, front power windows, rear power windows, full wheel cover, black colored B pillar, seatbelt reminder, front seat under tray, etc.
VXi / VDi (ABS): This is upgrade model of petrol version with all the features of Maruti Ritz VXI with ABS (Antilock Braking System) as an extra fitment for safety.
ZXi: This is the highest trim level available only on the petrol version with extra features like radio + CD with speakers, parcel tray, seat height adjuster, cigar lighter, tilt steering, steering wheel mounted audio controls, dual air bags and front ELR seat belt with pretension.
Both the engines on the Ritz are good and picking amongst both won’t be a bad decision. Hence, choose the engine as per your usage. The drivability on both is good, and even the gearbox is slick. Fuel efficiency will not be a let down factor either.
Ritz gets the recently developed K-Series 1.2-litre petrol motor, which is refined but is a bit languorous as one has to work through, to extract performance. This mill produces 84bhp of power and 113Nm of maximum torque. Refinement levels of the engine are high, and it is a freely revving motor. The gear lever of the Ritz is short and the shifts are positive. The engine doesn’t pant at low speeds as there is sufficient torque even when you drive it in a higher gear. However, one needs to shift down for quick overtaking in the city and the highway.
Previous generation Swift had earned notoriety with its diesel engine. The engine was highly refined with low NVH levels and sufficient torque. The Ritz has the same 1.3-litre DDiS engine. This engine produces 75bhp and a maximum torque of 190Nm.
There is some amount of lag in this engine and it performs well only if the revs are kept above 2000rpm for best performance. One has to downshift to make those overtaking moves. The engine comes mated to a five-speed manual transmission that is slick with positive and short throws.
The Ritz being softly sprung, its ride is well compliant. The handling might just not impress you too much, as there is some amount of body roll. The Ritz isn’t made for driving enthusiasts.
The powertrains on most of the hatchbacks in this segment are similar if not the same. It is the driving characteristics that vary. To be more specific, it is more of the handling that differs than the ride quality. All the cars in this segment have a sorted ride as the suspension doesn’t jiggle and disturb the peace of the occupants. Road undulations are well-taken care by the suspension. The Ritz has one of the best ride suppleness as it underpins the softest suspension set-up that glides over potholes.
The suspension set-up is the softest on the Ritz. Drive it quickly around a bend and you shall notice the body roll as this hatchback lack the dynamism that other competition possesses. The steering feels a bit slack at higher speeds, which further doesn’t any confidence into the driver. However, it is lightweight at low speeds, which makes driving a breeze in city traffic.
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