Despite being a sub 4-metre, the Amaze has loads of space on the inside and a massive boot of 400 litres. Even the quality of the plastics, the fit and finish are good on the Amaze. The Amaze gets integrated music system, electrically folding mirrors, USB connectivity as standard on its range topping VX version.
Interior styling of the instrument panel will be similar to the Brio, nevertheless we expect a few more frills on the sedan. The Amaze gets electrically adjustable mirrors, with electrical folding. The quality of materials is decent and even the fit and finish is decent. The integrated head rest is there even on the Amaze, just like the Brio hatch.
The Amaze might be a sub 4-metre sedan, but it is definitely the most spacious in its segment. Honda’s man maximum, machine minimum has made it possible to have loads of space in the front and the rear, with a massive boot of 400 litres. The wheelbase has also been extended by a good 60mm, which has amended the knee room for the second row passengers.
E: E is the base variant on the Amaze and it is available only on the manual versions. This variant gets front chrome grille, body coloured bumpers, power steering, power windows, AC, driver info display, tachometer and ABS with EBD only on the diesel model. The interiors are single tone beige fabric.
EX: The EX gets body coloured door handles and ORVMs, 1 DIN music system with speakers are the additional features. The diesel variant again gets ABS with EBD and this variant is also available only on the manual versions.
S/SAT: The S version is available for manual, while the automatic gets SAT. This variant gets keyless entry, driver seat height adjustment, power adjustable ORVMs, power socket, 2 DIN music system and chrome surrounds on air vents.
VX/VXAT: This is the top of the line version, with electrically adjustable and folding ORVMs, ABS with EBD, airbags and all the bells and whistles.
The engines and their performance are good on the Amaze, and there are no second thoughts to how good Honda engines have been. The 88bhp petrol and 98bhp diesel engines on the Amaze are powerful and one of the best in its segment, atleast on the manuscript. The acceleration produced by the Amaze is decent and it is very drivable, unlike competition.
1.2-litre petrol: The iVTEC from Honda makes driving bliss. This is another fine example of Honda’s engine craftsmanship. This perky engine is easy to drive with a strong mid-range. The exhaust note sweetens as you rev it and the engine being eager to spin faster even when it closes to red-line. Power delivery is linear and Amaze happily touches 100km/hr. Alibi, extra efforts are needed to excel above the 100 mark. Honda petrol engines are one of the reliable motors, and this is no exception. It comes mated to a five-speed manual or automatic transmission. The golf ball gear knob is easy to grab and the shifts on the gearbox are short and seamless. The Amaze is the only sedan in this segment to have a five-speed automatic transmission— others have a four-speeder.
1.5-litre diesel: The i-DTEC engine that India gets is a 1.5-litre, which is a derivative of the 1.6-litre i-DTEC. This has been done to get the duty cut on the diesel engines. The 1.5-litre engine churns out 98bhp of power and 200Nm of torque. This is the most powerful diesel engine in this segment and we are impressed by the power it produces. . But the power delivery is fairly linear, without any turbo lag. The low-end torque is decent and the drivability factor is also high. Even the five-speed manual transmission on the Amaze has short throws and positive shifts. Clutch pedal is light, making driving a breeze.
The Amaze is a bit softer than Brio for better ride but yet it is a good handler. It has been crafted for family use hence, it has better ride than the Brio.
The Amaze has a softer rear suspension, when compared to the Brio. This has been done for better ride for the rear passengers, and also for the fact that the wheelbase has been extended by 60mm. The softer rear means a more composed ride on rough roads. The ride is smooth and it doesn’t feel jittery even on rough surfaces. The handling of the Amaze is decent. It feels that the rear steps out, but it doesn’t really. The body roll is also minimal and even the tyres grip well. The chassis is well balanced as it twists well to take the load. The steering wheel is also light and easy to drive in city traffic making it stress free driving. The other advantage is that the vehicle has good visibility.
Ed's take: Build quality, touch and feel of the plastics on the Rapid are good and live upto Skoda’s brand expectations. The space is also sufficient in both the rows and even the boot is large. The only thing, we wish was added are the extra bells and whistles.
The interior is the place where you shall spend most of your time and hence the ergonomics and build-quality are important, not to forget the interior space. The instrument panel of the Rapid is ergonomically designed, backed with some good quality plastic. The cabin insulation is also good.
There are acres of space for the front row passengers in all the sedans, with large and comfortable seats that offer enough thigh and back support. Crawl into the rear seats and you realize that the Rapid has sufficient room there as well, though the seats aren’t very supportive. They feel a bit flat with not much thigh support. The Rapid even gets the convenience of adjusting the co-driver seat from the rear. The boot space is also good enough.
Active: This is the base variant of the Rapid that is available only with the manual versions of the petrol and diesel. It has manual central door locking, manual AC with adjustable rear AC vents, anti glare rear view mirrors, rear defogger, rough road package, engine immobilizer, front center armrest, tilt and telescopic adjustable steering wheel, and anti pinch system.
Ambition: The Ambition comes in petrol, diesel and also the automatic petrol version. It gets central door locking, ABS, front rear fog lamps and driver airbag are added in the model. Other add-ons include body colored ORVMs and door handles, remote control with foldable key, driver seat height adjuster and rear center armrest.
Elegance: This is the top of the line version of the Rapid and is also available with all the engine options. It comes loaded with all the brownies that the Rapid will possess. Front passenger airbags are also added. A security code for audio player, AUX ports for media player and memory card, automatic climate control, electrically adjustable mirrors, MID (Mobile Internet Device). Now, it even gets projector lamps, Bluetooth and USB connectivity too.
Ed's take: The 1.6-litre diesel engine of the Rapid is far superior to its petrol brethren in performance and fuel efficiency. The power delivery is linear and it is fun to drive in the city or the highway. We recommend the diesel version of the Rapid for its sheer pleasure and economy.
With the increasing cost of petrol and higher efficiency of oil burners, manufacturers are tuning petrol cars for better mileage over performance. Similar is the case with the Rapid. The 1.6-litre engine produces 103bhp at 5250rom and a peak torque of 153Nm at 3800rpm. This 1.6-litre petrol engine has a decent turn of pace; however do not expect them to be strenuous. The NVH (noise, vibration and harshness) levels are fairly low on the petrol version.
One needs to downshift them for quick overtaking manoeuvres, as most of the power is delivered at higher revs and you feel the lack at lower speeds.
5-speed manual: 3.5/5
The 5-speed manual transmission on the 1.6-litre is smooth and the shifts are also positive. This is one of the slickest shifting gearbox in its segment and it is joy to use as well. The Skoda Rapid returns a fuel economy of 15.42kmpl in its manual avatar as per the ARAI cycle.
6-speed automatic: 3/5
The Rapid also gets the option of a six-speed tiptronic self-shifting transmission. The shifts on the Rapid are lethargic and one can rightly say “the box does blunt the engine’s performance”. We wish the Rapid came with the DSGs, but that would have increased the cost of the car. As per the ARAI test, the Rapid returns a fuel economy of 14.4kmpl.
1.6-litre diesel: 4/5
The 1.6-litre diesel engine of the Rapid churns out a power of 103bhp at 4400rpm and a maximum torque of 250Nm at 1500-3000rpm. The NVH levels aren’t low, and there is a lot of diesel clatter on this engine.
This is oil burner is a stonker of a performer and it has deep reserves of torque at low rpm. Plant your right foot and the engine surges you forward. The diesel version of the Rapid outperforms the petrol Rapid not just in fuel economy but also in performance. The 5-speed manual transmission on the 1.6-litre diesel is a delight and the shifts are also positive. This is one of the slickest shifting gearbox in its segment. The oil burner powered Skoda Rapid returns a fuel economy of 20.54kmpl in its manual avatar as per the ARAI cycle.
Ed's take: The ride on the Rapid is a tad stiff, but most of the road shocks are filtered out. The Rapid lives up to the Skoda badge in the handling department. The well-balanced chassis of the Rapid makes it joy to drive around bends, and even the response from the steering wheel is good as it weighs up well.
These sedans are built for better comfort and hence ride quality on the sedans is pretty much sorted. These cars can go through the potholes with a muted thud and the suspension absorbs most of the jounces and rebounds, keeping the occupants intact. Skoda Rapid has a tad stiffer when compared to competition.
The chassis of the Skoda Rapid is well balanced and this sedan is capable of handling turns at a higher speed. You can push it around bends without a second-thought. The tyres on the Rapid squeal when pushed to their limit— despite the there being sufficient grip. The steering wheel of the Rapid is fantastic. It is exactly how a driving enthusiast would want.
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