Sunday, 22 April 2018

Ultra-high voltage: The Audi e-tron prototype in a Faraday cage


Fast charging with up to 150 kW in the Ionity network Wide-ranging options for charging at home and on the move Range of over 400 kilometers (248.5 mi) in the WLTP driving cycle The production version of the Audi e-tron prototype heralds the dawn of a new era for the brand with the four rings: The company [...] More »


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Friday, 20 April 2018

Slideshow: Anger Management with This Over 1,000HP A3


This A3 is a Pure Unhinged Racer. Check it out inside.


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Honda Brio 20 Previewed

Honda Small RS Concept

Remember the last time Honda made a sporty hatchback that didn't cost a bomb? The Brio could have been it when it was launched in 2011, but it was never officially given the sporty show or go. At best, the Brio was a spacious city hatchback with a peppy engine that needed to be driven hard to have some fun. But now, Honda has unveiled the 'Small RS Concept' at the Indonesia International Motor Show 2018 and it previews what could be the sporty hatch many had craved for in the first place.

For now, the specifications of the Honda Small RS Concept have not been revealed, with only statements from Honda officials claiming that it will be sporty. It does look the part, for sure.

Honda Small RS Concept

At the front, the Small RS Concept has a sportier and more pleasing version of the upcoming, a sportier version of Honda's new grille design, large faux intakes on the bumper intersected by DRLs, a prominent front lip with blacked-out turning vanes and a hood scoop.

The side profile is as dynamic as the rest of the Small RS Concept, with faux side vents on the front fender, large black alloy wheels, glossy black side skirts and a sporty window line which ends with a sharp kink at the rear.

Honda Small RS Concept

The rear angle of the Honda Small RS Concept seems like it has taken inspiration from the, it will replace one unique feature of its predecessor - the all-glass tailgate.

Honda has not revealed the interior of the concept yet, but we expect it to be similar to the one on the, albeit with sporty touches all around. Engine and transmission options have also not been revealed yet, but we expect the same or updated version of the Brio's 1.2-litre petrol engine to find a place under the RS' hood.

Honda Small RS Concept

The Small RS Concept is expected to spawn into the all-new Brio in the coming months and will be launched in Indonesia soon after its reveal. Honda India may take a while to bring the new Brio to India, though. Primarily because of how cutthroat the hatchback segment in India is and also because the company has already set its goal to launch the new Amaze, in the Indian market this year.




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Thursday, 19 April 2018

Automobili Pininfarina Electric Hypercar Teased

Pininfarina PF0 Sketches Revealed

Days after officially beginning operations, with a conscience has revealed more about its first product. Automobili Pininfarina has released the first sketches and some specifications of the PF-Zero/PF0 hypercar which is set to be launched for the elite of the world in 2020.

These early sketches show a very radical looking car with typical Pininfarina design cues. The nose is low and has a distinct crease all around the front, while the windshields, windows and roof seem to have blended into one unit, and there are large flying buttresses at the rear.

Pininfarina PF0 Sketches Revealed

The tech specs revealed are also interesting. The electric powertrain and power source will be developed using the combined expertise of Croatian electric supercar manufacturer's Formula E team. Four electric motors, one on each wheel, are expected to produce a total of over 2,000PS of power. Expect a power to weight ratio of close to or better than 1:1 as the kerb weight is said to be less than 2000kg

0-100kmph time will be under 2 seconds, 0-300kmph will take under 12 seconds and the Pininfarina PF0 will go on to hit a top speed of over 400kmph The battery pack of unspecified capacity is said to give the PF0/PF-Zero a range of 500km between charges.

Pininfarina PF0 Sketches Revealed

The mind-blowing design and performance numbers will cost a lot. Almost andeuro;2 million/$2.47 million/Rs 16.26 crore before taxes. More details about the car are expected to be revealed in the run-up to the launch, so stay tuned for ZigWheels for the latest on the Pininfarina PF0/PF-Zero.




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Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10 Diesel Manual Comparison Review

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

You'd be right in thinking so. After all, whether it's the features list, the engines or the transmissions, the so prematurely. After all, we're talking about one of the highest selling cars in India. So, which one should you pick?

Eye Of The Beholder

Both contenders play it safe. The Swift looks a lot cleaner than before, but mixes it up with modernities like LED projector headlights, LED tail lights, bigger, 15-inch alloys (vs the Grand i10's 14-inchers) and differentiators like the rear door handles that are nestled next to the C-pillar.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review
Swift Grand
Length 3,840mm 3,765mm
Width 1,735mm 1,660mm
Height 1,530mm 1,520mm
Wheelbase 2,450mm 2,425mm

In comparison, the Grand i10 looks a touch more aggressive with the front bumper sporting black slashes for the fog lamp enclosures and DRLs. Also, while it does get a smaller set of wheels, the design is quite sporty. But the rest of the look is sober and even after the facelift, the car is starting to show its age.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

Not only does the Swift look fresher, it's also longer, wider, taller and has the larger wheelbase. There's no ignoring the fact that the Grand i10 has a smaller footprint and the Swift has more road presence.

But, interior space has never been the Swift's forte. So do these numbers translate into something meaningful?

Break Out The Measuring Tape

The answer is yes. The new Swift isn't just bigger than the Grand i10, it's also wider and has a larger wheelbase than its own predecessor. So now, you can seat a family of four comfortably and with 45mm shoulder room in surplus over the Hyundai Grand i10. It's also better than the Grand i10 for seating three at the rear, though, we'd still call this a 4-seater that can seat five. The front and rear seats are also more accommodating of bulky frames. But while the all-black cabin looks sporty, it does eat away at the sense of space, especially when combined with the tall window line.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review
Swift Grand i10
Rear Shoulder Room 1,265mm 1,220mm
Rear Head Room 920mm 920mm
Rear Knee Room (min-max) 590mm-825mm 640mm-845mm
Rear Seat Base Length x Width 460mm x 1,275mm
455mm x 1,225mm

This is where the Grand i10 one-ups the Swift. The beige-black dual tone palette is a bit staid, but it does make the cabin feel airier. The glass area feels larger and rear seat occupants will find the seats cushier as well. As a 5-seater, the Swift is more capable, but for four, the Grand i10 is just better. This isn't just because of the seats or sense of space, there's actually more knee room on offer. You even get niceties like AC vents and a 12V charging socket at the rear. What stands out the most though, is the quality. Unlike the Ignis, the Swift doesn't really employ the finest range of tacky plastics, but there's a finesse to choice of cabin trim that the Swift, a car that's nearly half a decade younger, still can't match.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

Both cars have a good practicality quotient with enough storage spots for your cell phone, knick-knacks and bottles. The Grand i10 has more accommodating rear door bins while the Swift has the bigger boot and wider opening to it.

Top Trumps

Whip out the Top Trumps cards and prepare for a walk down memory lane. Sadly, it's a short walk. These cars are neck-and-neck when it comes to the features list. Smart key with push-button start, auto AC, height adjustable driver's seat, leather steering, steering-mounted audio and phone controls, and a 7.0-inch touchscreen infotainment system (with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and MirrorLink) are features common to both.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

The Swift gets a few points for offering auto headlamps, SD card navigation and LED projector headlights, but the Grand i10 gets rear AC vents. Also, the Grand i10's infotainment setup is superior as it has the better user interface and doesn't glare under direct sunlight unlike the Swift's SmartPlay.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

But, this round goes to the Swift for one big reason - safety. Yes, both of them do get dual front airbags and ABS, but only the Swift gets them as standard. Also, only the Swift gets ISOFIX child seat mounts (standard again). A miss by Hyundai and though the MY18 model sees ABS offered on the Sportz variant as well, the Magna and Era still miss out on it.

Excitement

The new Swift has truly found a sweet spot between the driver-centric first gen and family-focused second gen. Take it to a set of twisties, yes even the diesel, and this Kart certainly has some Go to it. The Swift enjoys darting through corner after corner and is just stiff enough to stay flat through them. While the steering isn't the quickest or the most communicative, it's significantly better than the Hyundai's when you're looking to have some fun. The latter's steering is quicker but is simply devoid of feedback, so you can't carry high speeds into a hairpin with confidence the way you can in the Swift.
Two points to note though; if you're buying the Swift as a driver's car, upgrade the tyres. Secondly, the diesel, in particular, is a bit nose heavy. So if you brake hard into a corner, expect the tail to sway out a bit.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

Out on the highway, the Swift has the more mature ride at high speeds. Both feel equally composed in the front seats, but the Grand i10's rear bench gets a touch bouncy. It doesn't settle as quickly after say, crossing an expansion joint north of 100kmph. The bigger challenge for the Korean contender here, though, is its engine. Both cars make the exact same amount of power and torque, with the primary difference being the Grand i10's one cylinder deficit.

Swift Grand
0-100kmph 12.38 seconds 13.21 seconds
Roll on 30-80kmph (3rd) 8.54 seconds 7.93 seconds
100-0kmph braking 43.40m 47m
FE City 19.74kmpl 19.1kmpl
FE Highway 27.38kmpl 22.19kmpl


The engine works well on the highway if you employ a relaxed driving style and shift up early. But it's not an engine you can push. Anything beyond 3,500rpm is all noise and no progress, so it's best to work your way up the ratios quickly. Contrarily, the Swift's engine is happy to play kho-kho close to the redline. It doesn't protest as much when revved hard and is more relaxed at cruising speeds. This shows in both, our performance and efficiency tests. The Swift is nearly a second quicker to 100kmph and over 5kmpl more efficient at highway speeds (avg speed of ~68-70kmph).

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

But then, this is no unfamiliar engine and it has an all too familiar problem - turbo lag. Below 2,000rpm, the 1.3-litre DDiS is sluggish and there is a very noticeable surge when the turbo kicks in. Try even crawling at 20kmph in 3rd gear and the motor is on the verge of stalling. Ask the same of the Grand i10, and it'll do so without breaking a sweat. That's where the Grand i10 excels - low speed driveability. Even if you go a gear too high, the motor somehow finds a way to make it work and light throttle inputs are all you'd need for the day's commute. The Grand i10 simply is a better city slicker. The comfort-set suspension also deals with low speed bumps and undulations better than the Swift does and keeps the occupants better insulated from the surface underneath at urban speeds.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

Much like it was with the Ignis comparo, the Grand i10 holds its crown as the better city car, while the Swift takes the cake when highway usage is also factored in. It also has the advantage of offering an automatic transmission with both, the petrol and diesel engines, and a well-tuned one at that.

Get To The Point

Ready? And the winner isandhellip; neither one. The fact is, there's no way to declare anyone as the outright winner. Each car caters to certain needs better than the other. It's a simple case of different strokes for different folks.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

With its more supple low-speed ride, superior city driveability and all-round premium quality, the Hyundai Grand i10 comes across as the sweeter city slicker and family car. The top variants considered, it's also the better value proposition, since it's over Rs 80,000 cheaper. In fact, the Grand i10 Asta (o) is priced at par with the penultimate Swift variant - Zdi.

Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10: Diesel Manual Comparison Review

The Swift has the X-factor. It offers a fun-to-drive experience and is the better pick if you have a lot of highway usage as well. It'll also do a better job as a 5-seater and gets an edge because key safety features are offered across the range as standard, unlike in the Grand i10. Ultimately, the right car comes down to what kind of a buyer you are.




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Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Hyundai Grand i10 Comparison: Review




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All-New BMW X3 Launched At Rs 4999 Lakh

New BMW X3 Launched in India

BMW India has launched the all-new X3 SUV in India, a couple of months after it was officially showcased as the 2018 Auto Expo. Priced from Rs 49.99 lakh, ex-showroom India, the new X3 goes up against competition such as the Mercedes-Benz GLC, Audi Q5, Volvo XC60 and the Lexus NX300h.

BMW has only launched the X3 with diesel power in India, for now, the company has confirmed that it will launch petrol-powered variants of the SUV later in the year. The two variants on sale are the xDrive 20d Expedition which costs Rs 49.99 lakh and the xDrive 20d Luxury Line which costs Rs 56.70 lakh. This is the first time that any BMW SUV (or SAV as they call it) as been launched with the 'Luxury Line' trim in India. The BMW X3 is locally assembled at the company's plant near Chennai, Tamil Nadu.

New BMW X3 Launched in India

The BMW X3 is only available with a single diesel engine - a 2.0-litre, 4-cylinder, turbocharged engine developing 190PS @ 4,000rpm and 400Nm @ 1,750-2,500rpm. The engine sends power through an 8-speed automatic transmission to an intelligent AWD system. BMW claims the X3 can do the 0-100kmph run in 8-seconds, and also claims it has a fuel-efficiency of 16.04kmpl. Though the X3 has grown in size, it is 55kg lighter than before which has improved performance and efficiency.

The new X3 looks like a smaller X5, with the Luxury Line variant getting features like gloss black and chrome trim on the grille, two-tone body cladding, adaptive LED headlamps (Expedition gets standard LEDs), LED fog lamps and 19-inch alloy wheels (Expedition gets 18-inch units).

New BMW X3 Launched in India

BMW has gone the whole hog with the features list on the X3, especially with the Luxury Line trim. It gets the BMW Display key which gets a touchscreen display through which certain features of the SUV can be controlled, paddle shifters behind the steering wheel, a 10.25-inch infotainment touchscreen with Apple CarPlay connectivity and touch-sensitive iDrive controller, 16-speaker 600W Harman Kardon surround sound system, a fully digital 12.3-inch instrument cluster, parking assistant, wireless charging, electric folding rear seats etc.

The standard feature list is extensive too, but the X3 Expedition misses out on the digital instrument cluster, a rearview camera and leather seats. It does get a panoramic sunroof, 6-colour ambient lighting, an electric tailgate, 3-zone climate control, 40:20:40 rear seats and 8-airbags.

New BMW X3 Launched in India

The BMW X3 has a tough fight on its hands and we will be putting the competition against each other to see which one is better. Stay tuned to ZigWheels for a comprehensive comparison.




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Tata Nexon AMT Review: 5 Things You Need to Know




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