Maruti Suzuki Swift has been one of the best sellers for the company and now the refreshed model comes with silver accents and new seat upholstery. The all-black interiors look neat but it may repel anyone looking for an airy interior.
The Swift's front seats are the best in the business and the driver seat comes with a height adjuster. Other premium features on the list include push start button, electric retractable ORVMs with turn indicators, new alloy wheels, premium upholstery, reverse parking sensor, speed based auto volume and Bluetooth connectivity, audio switch in steering wheel and Electromagnetic back door opener.
LXi - The petrol base variant 3-point ELR seatbelts, high mounted stop lamp, sporty wrap around door trims, parcel shelf, sun visor, body coloured bumper, manual internally adjustable ORVMs, 14-inch steel wheel with centre cap, 60:40 split rear seats, tilt steering, remote fuel lid opener and back door opener, and manual air conditioner.
LXi (O)/LDi - The LXi (O)/LDi variants get security alarm system, silver accents on trims, front door power windows, driver side power window-auto down function, central door locking and keyless entry.
VXi/VDi - The mid variants VXi/VDi get day/night IRVM, passenger side vanity mirror, silver accents on steering wheel, inside chrome door handles, body coloured door handles, electric adjustable ORVMs, ORVM mounted side indicator, front and rear fog lamps, blacked out A and B pillars, 14-inch steel wheels with full wheel cap, front and rear power windows, tachometer, stereo with radio and CD player with USB and Aux-in support. The VDI variant gets the ABS with EBD option.
ZXi/ZDi - The top end ZXI/ZDI variants get reverse parking sensors, driver and passenger airbags, ABS with EBD, brake assist, 15-inch alloy wheels, push button engine start, electro-magnetic back-door opener, rear window defogger, rear wiper and washer, front seat belt shoulder adjuster, automatic air conditioner, outside temperature display, Bluetooth connectivity and steering mounted audio controls.
The interiors of the Polo are well designed and even the bells and whistles now on offer are good in the segment. It is only the rear seat space that is a bit of an issue.
The Polo might be the smallest of all Volkswagens, but the German manufacturer has ensured their current smallest hatch also has high quality interiors. The fit and finish of the plastic is amazing and even the look and feel of the materials of the good too. The Polo now even offers most of the features that other B+ segment hatchbacks offer. It has a new music system with SD card reader, Bluetooth connectivity, USB and aux connection too. The Polo also has steering-mounted audio controls too.
The front row seats are large and feel comfortable just like any other big German car. These seats are good enough for a long drives and one won’t feel tired either. The second row of interiors isn’t that spacious as the first row as the knee room is a bit too tight for tall occupants. The boot isn’t that large also.
Maruti Suzuki has retained the same petrol and diesel engines as before, but has made some tweaks to improve its overall fuel efficiency. The petrol variants are equipped with a 1.2-litre engine while the diesel variants are powered by the famous 1.3-litre Multijet engine. Both engines are peppy and finely refined.
Maruti Suzuki Swift petrol engine makes a maximum power of 84.3 PS at 6000 rpm and a maximum torque of 115 Nm at 4000 rpm and comes fitted with 5-speed manual transmission. The Swift Petrol comes with a 9.67 % improvement and a fuel efficiency of 20.4 kmpl.
Maruti Suzuki Swift diesel is fitted with a 1.3-litre diesel engine making a maximum power of 75 PS at 4000 rpm and a maximum torque of 190 Nm at 2000 rpm. Here too the diesel variants get only the 5-speed manual transmission. The Swift Diesel's fuel efficiency has been increased by 10% at 25.2 kmpl.
The power produced by the Polo engines is good, but the petrol and diesel have some drivability issues, especially when you consider the gearing that seem to be designed for European market.
A new Volkswagen engine has been used on the Polo. It has the new 1.5-litre diesel engine that replaces the 1.2-litre and even produces 90bhp instead of 75bhp. This mill has a strong mid-range and high end. There is a lot of turbo lag and the engine needs to be revved above 2000rpm to reach the power band. The power produced by most of the competition including the Swift is a lot more linear than the Polo. Volkswagen has upgraded the engine for more power and soon the GT TDI will be available with the same engine but 103bhp of power.
The five-speed manual transmission has short throws and the box is slick. It doesn’t feel even a bit rubbery. The ratios are good for highway driving, while in the city one has to work out his way to extract some good performance. The fuel efficiency of this mill is good as the 1.5-litre mill from Volkswagen is extremely frugal.
1.2-litre turbo petrol:
This is the new 1.2-litre four-cylinder engine and it is different from the regular 1.2-litre petrol as that is a three-pot mill. This engine produces 104bhp of power, which is equivalent to the 1.6-litre petrol engine that once powered the Polo. The NVH levels are fairly low, except for cold starts when the engine is noisy. The engine screams as it revs above 4000rpm. Blip the throttle, and the transmission responds immediately, and at the time it shifts smoothly while cruising. This is an all-aluminium engine and it has been turbocharged as well. Even though the power produced by this engine as same as the 1.6-litre, it is the torque spread that is much better on this new engine. As even the engine is lighter and has a lower displacement, it is more fuel-efficient. With this engine, Volkswagen gets the duty-cut as the displacement is under 1.2-litre.
Another segment first is that it is a seven-speed direct-Shift Gearbox (DSG). The gear ratios on this box are tailored as per the Indian driving cycle for maximum utilisation of power. There is also tiptronic transmission, if you like to make those manual shifts. We sorely missed the paddles shifts. From what we learn, Volkswagen could introduce the paddle shifts at a later stage.
1.2-litre petrol engine:
The 1.2-litre petrol engine on the Polo has the same displacement like the diesel engine. This is also a three-pot mill that produces about 75bhp of power. This engine has good power and even the low-end torque is good. The mid range is strong and the power increases with the rise in engine speed. We aren’t impressed with the NVH levels as the engine is louder than one would have liked.
The five-speed manual transmission has short throws and the box is slick. It doesn’t feel even a bit rubbery. The ratios are good for highway driving, while in the city one has to work out his way to extract some good performance. But it is the fuel efficiency that hasn’t impressed us, as it returns about 9-10km/l in normal city driving.
Maruti Suzuki Swift has always been a fun car to drive with a great steering. The feedback from the steering is among the best in its class and the car's suspension is tuned for great handling.
The Swift gets McPherson struts to the front and torsion beam to the rear. The car gets around the corners and turns with amazing confidence and holds its ground.
The ride and handling of the Polo has been tweaked for a perfect combination of both. The handling of the Polo is very nimble and even the ride is sorted, though it is wee bit stiff.
The Polo chassis has been designed for Polo Cup Racing and hence this design can take a lot more engine power and torque than what it is currently being sold with. The Polo chassis is extremely agile and the hatchback does handle well. The Polo is as good as any other Volkswagen vehicle when it comes to handling.
The ride of the Volkswagen Polo is also well sorted. The McPherson struts on the Polo are well sorted and ride is supple. The springs absorb most of the jolts and undulations the ride a lot more comfortable for occupants. The light steering wheel ensures convenient driving in the city and also tire-free long trips.