Volkswagen Vento Expert Review

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Introduction

Just ahead of the 2016 Auto Expo, Volkswagen India has launched the updated version of its popular sedan, Vento. With a mild facelift, the company has introduced it at a starting price of Rs. 7.85 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). Besides being available across all Volkswagen dealerships in the country, it will also be showcased at the upcoming Auto Expo. In this latest version, a few interesting attributes are added to make the machine more user friendly to the occupants. Let's go into the details and find out what it has to offer!

Pros
  • Dynamic touch screen infotainment system. This covers up for the entertainment factor, which was lacking in its previous version.
  • Performance oriented engines. All its three motors give out a decent fuel economy while delivering good power output.
  • 7-speed DSG transmission. Its dual clutch mechanism allows an automatic gear shift without interrupting the power flow.
Cons
  • Ground clearance. Quite low makes it look uncomfortable when it comes to huge bumps.
  • The base and mid range variants are missing out the new additions, which might not be well-received by the buyers.
  • No cosmetic updates. The new version with an old external design is a bit disappointing.

Stand Out Features

  • Mirror link connectivity enables connecting your Smartphone to the car and perform several functions with ease.

    Mirror link connectivity enables connecting your Smartphone to the car and perform several functions with ease.

  • ┬áInfotainment system with a touch screen display that optimizes the driving comfort.

     Infotainment system with a touch screen display that optimizes the driving comfort.

CarDekho Verdict

We at CarDekho, would opine that it is quite disappointing that this facelifted Volkswagen Vento lacks updates to its exteriors, interiors and technical details as well. There is no doubt that with new offerings and improvements, this automaker is continuously putting efforts to raise the standards in the market.

"If the price and performance parameters are prioritized, it may still remain a preferred choice of a certain section of customers."

But just adding a few new attributes may not impress many buyers keeping in view, the upcoming Auto Expo and considering the new aspects with which all other manufacturers are coming with. However, if the price and performance parameters are prioritized, it may still remain a preferred choice of a certain section of customers.  %

Background & Evolution

Volkswagen India had started the production of Vento in 2010 in its Pune plant. It was introduced in three trim levels – Trendline, Comfortline and Highline. This model is technically, a stretched version of its hatchback sibling Volkswagen Polo. Even then, it was offered with both petrol and diesel engine options. The firm went on to add a separate TSI model with a 1.2-litre TSI motor that was borrowed from the Polo. This sedan managed to impress many with features like automatic climate control and a touchscreen radio to name a few. In 2013, the manufacturer came up with the “Style” limited edition trim and next, it was the “Konekt Edition” in 2014. Meanwhile, the model received a facelift in 2015 with some changes made to its interiors, and exteriors. This year's facelift brings it some additional aspects, which have been missing in all its predecessors.

Exterior

Vento has always been a smart sedan, which owns a design that is both elegant and stylish. The 2016 version does not receive any changes to its outsides. However, it carries some attractive elements that make it a head turner on roads.

In terms of dimensions, its rival Maruti Ciaz is 100mm longer and 31mm wider than Volkswagen Vento. As for the height, all its competitors are ahead of Vento. Even the ground clearance and wheelbase measurements are less than all other models.

On the front, the first thing to catch your attention is definitely the wide radiator grille featuring three horizontally positioned slats. What highlights it further is the attractive logo, which sits exactly at the center of the grille. The neat chrome finishing to thin slats as well as insignia makes it look more striking.

The black finished halogen headlamps on either side of the grille is another element thats worth mentioning. Being large in size, its headlight cluster fits well with the design of its grille. In the mid and top spec trims, dual beam headlamps are also on the offer.

Made of a heat insulating glass, its windscreen now gets rain sensing wipers thus, making the view more clear ahead. Talking about the bonnet, it slopes downward, while the minimal creases which gives it an appealing look.

Nothing much to describe in its side profile except for the 15-inch Zirkonia alloy wheels that come adorned with high performance tubeless tyres of size 185/60 R145. Tubeless tyres of same size are used for the Comfortline grade as well. While the rest of the lineup gets robust steel rims, which are sized 14 inches in the Trendline trims. These radial tubeless tyres bear the size 175/70 R14.

Well designed outside rear view mirrors are also on the list, which gets neat body color. Side turn indicators are given as standard in all the variants.

This sedan does look plain and lacks some style in its rear end however, a few aspects make it somewhat interesting to look at.

The taillight cluster is quite bright and comes integrated with 3D effect lamps along with turn indicators.

The bumper in its rear end is neatly carved, while the boot lid is embossed with company's insignia and gives a good impression to the on-lookers.

Coming to its boot compartment, it measures around 494 liters, which is indeed enough for placing a number of bags. However, Honda and Maruti are comparatively better in this point as, they are offering more luggage storage space than Vento.

Exterior Comparison

Volkswagen Vento Honda City
Length (mm) 4390 4440
Width (mm) 1699 1695
Height (mm) 1467 1495
Ground Clearance (mm) 163 165
Wheel Base (mm) 2553 2600
Kerb Weight (kg) 1193 1165
 

Boot Space Comparison

Volkswagen Vento
Volume 494-liters

Interior

The design of its internal section is left untouched in this facelift, however, some advanced equipments can be seen inside, adding to its features list. The cabin is neat good quality plastic materials and has space for five people who can feel convenient with ample head, leg as well as shoulder room.

Inside the car, you can actually see the excellent work of the company's designers who have combined the dual tone colour scheme and chrome elements to give it an elegant look. Especially, if you take a look at the dashboard, it looks so well designed and even the equipments are properly positioned thus, making it more convenient for the driver to control different functions with much ease.

A stylish centre console sits at the centre of the dashboard carrying aspects like the climatronic automatic air conditioning unit with rectangular shaped air vents, which are placed just above the music system. Dust, pollen filter and rear AC vent is also available.

Undoubtedly, one of the important updates it has received is the dynamic infotainment display. This advanced unit is offered with a touchscreen display and also includes radio, navigation system and a few other functions. Meanwhile, the mirror link connectivity is definitely an add-on that lets you connect your phone to the car and access different functions effortlessly.

A power assisted steering column is on offer with tilt and telescopic adjustment functions that aid the driver in adjusting its position accordingly. Exactly behind it is a stylish instrument cluster that also holds a tachometer, tripmeter, as well as speedometer.

Performance

Diesel

The diesel versions have a 1.5-litre turbocharged oil burner that is based on a DOHC valve configuration. This engine makes a peak power of 103.5bhp besides yielding torque of 250Nm. Here, the added benefit is the availability of both 5-speed manual and 7-speed DSG automatic transmission gear box options. Also, it gives a good mileage of about 20.64 Kmpl in the manual trims, while this figure is even better in the AT variants where the fuel economy comes to 21.5 Kmpl approximately.

Performance Comparison (Diesel)

Volkswagen Vento
Power 103.5bhp@4400rpm
Torque (Nm) 250Nm@1500-2500rpm
Engine Displacement (cc) 1498
Transmission Manual
Top Speed (kmph) 180 Kmph
0-100 Acceleration (sec) 11.07 Seconds
Kerb Weight (kg) 1216Kg
Fuel Efficiency (ARAI) 20.64kmpl
Power Weight Ratio 85.11513157894737 bhp/ton

Petrol

The naturally aspirated 1.6-litre petrol engine is one among the two options offered in this model. It produces 103.5bhp and 153Nm torque besides returning a mileage of around 16.09 Kmpl. This one comes with a 5-speed manual transmission gear box. Also on the offer is the 1.2-litre petrol mill, which also generates the same power but delivers torque of 175Nm between 1500 to 4100rpm. This mill is mated with a 7-speed DSG automatic transmission gear box that drives power to its front wheels.

Performance Comparison (Petrol)

Honda City Volkswagen Vento
Power 117.3bhp@6600rpm 103.5bhp@5250rpm
Torque (Nm) 145Nm@4600rpm 153Nm@3800rpm
Engine Displacement (cc) 1497 1598
Transmission Automatic Manual
Top Speed (kmph) 195 Kmph 185 Kmph
0-100 Acceleration (sec) 10 Seconds 12.3 Seconds
Kerb Weight (kg) 1085kg 1145Kg
Fuel Efficiency (ARAI) 18.0kmpl 16.09kmpl
Power Weight Ratio 108.11059907834101 bhp/ton 90.39301310043668 bhp/ton

Ride and Handling

As for the braking, a robust set of ventilated disc brakes are fitted to its front wheels and the rear ones get sturdy drum brakes. Anti lock braking mechanism is also offered that not only boosts this mechanism but also prevents the vehicle from skidding. Meanwhile, the McPherson strut on front axle and semi-independent trailing arm on the rear one makes your journey in this sedan quite comfortable. This suspension system ensures the ride is smooth no matter how the road conditions are. On the other hand, with a speed sensing electronic power steering column, you can easily take turns besides having good control at both low and high speeds.

Safety

Safety elements are up to the mark in this upgraded Vento. In the entry level models, you will find aspects like dual front airbags, three point seat belts that are height adjustable at front, and electronic engine immobilizer with floating code. The rear parking sensors does the job of alerting the driver about any obstacle through audible signals, while the front and rear adjustable head restraints offers support and protection to your neck. Whereas the mid and top spec variants additionally gets hill hold control, and power windows with pinch guard function on all doors. Besides these, the advanced attributes like anti lock braking system as well as electronic stabilization program takes the security standards to next level.

Safety Comparison

Volkswagen Vento Honda City
Airbags righticonClose righticonClose
ABS righticonClose righticonClose
EBD righticonClose righticonClose

Variants

  • Diesel
  • Petrol
Variants Features Price
1.5 TDI Trendline Driver Seat Height Adjuster, Adjustable Power Steering, Dual Front Airbags, 9.58 Lakh*
1.5 TDI Comfortline [ In adition to 1.5 TDI Trendline ] Multi-Function Display, Climatronic Automatic A/C, Dual Beam Headlamps, [ Variant 1.5 TDI Trendline price ] + 1,02,008 =  10.6 Lakh*
1.5 TDI Highline [ In adition to 1.5 TDI Comfortline ] Multi-Function Steering, Leatherette Seat Covering, 15-inch Alloy Wheels, [ Variant 1.5 TDI Comfortline price ] + 98,081 =  11.59 Lakh*
1.5 TDI Comfortline AT [ In adition to 1.5 TDI Highline ] Automatic Transmission, All Features Of Comfortline, [ Variant 1.5 TDI Highline price ] + 32,123 =  11.91 Lakh*
1.5 TDI Highline Plus [ In adition to 1.5 TDI Comfortline AT ] Reverse Parking Camera, LED Headlamps, LED DRLS, [ Variant 1.5 TDI Comfortline AT price ] + 59,716 =  12.5 Lakh*
1.5 TDI Highline AT [ In adition to 1.5 TDI Highline Plus ] All Features Of Highline, Automatic Transmission, [ Variant 1.5 TDI Highline Plus price ] + 33,330 =  12.84 Lakh*
1.5 TDI Highline Plus AT [ In adition to 1.5 TDI Highline AT ] Same As Highline Plus, Automatic Transmission, [ Variant 1.5 TDI Highline AT price ] + 91,939 =  13.76 Lakh*
Variants Features Price
1.6 Trendline Dual Airbags, Rear Defogger, Rear AC Vents, 8.19 Lakh*
1.6 Comfortline [ In adition to 1.6 Trendline ] Hill Hold Control, Anti-Lock Braking System, Dual Beam Headlamps, [ Variant 1.6 Trendline price ] + 97,271 =  9.17 Lakh*
1.6 Highline [ In adition to 1.6 Comfortline ] Multi-Function Steering, Bluetooth Connectivity, Speed Sensing Door Locks, [ Variant 1.6 Comfortline price ] + 92,082 =  10.09 Lakh*
1.2 TSI Comfortline AT [ In adition to 1.6 Highline ] Automatic Transmission, All Features Of Comfortline, [ Variant 1.6 Highline price ] + 43,776 =  10.53 Lakh*
1.6 Highline Plus [ In adition to 1.2 TSI Comfortline AT ] LED Headlamps, LED DRLS, Reverse Parking Camera, [ Variant 1.2 TSI Comfortline AT price ] + 49,223 =  11.02 Lakh*
1.2 TSI Highline AT [ In adition to 1.6 Highline Plus ] All Features Of Highline, Automatic Transmission, [ Variant 1.6 Highline Plus price ] + 43,723 =  11.46 Lakh*
1.2 TSI Highline Plus AT [ In adition to 1.2 TSI Highline AT ] Automatic Transmission, Same As Highline Plus, [ Variant 1.2 TSI Highline AT price ] + 91,939 =  12.37 Lakh*

Its base level Trendline trim does have an array of features, which are quite good for the price range it carries. Key elements like a multi function display, driver seat with adjustment facility and sporty flat-bottom steering wheel are present in this model.

In case of Comfortline variant, you will get to see a few more additional aspects like cruise control, remote central locking, and 15-inch steel rims.

The advanced and newly added features are present in the top end Highline trim, which comes with Mirror link connectivity, auto dimming inside rear view mirror, and has steering mounted audio controls as well.

Volkswagen Vento similar cars to compare & consider  
*Ex-showroom price

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