Over the final decade the sedan has been fading slowly away from the thoughts area of automobile patrons. The sports activities utility automobile has jostled its means into that area and has firmly taken root, convincing customers that the physique type is particular each when it comes to novelty and practicality within the Indian context.
Today we’re at peak SUV insanity, although just a few new sedans have managed to carry again some life into the waning phase. The regular phase favorite Honda City and Hyundai Verna noticed newcomers Skoda Slavia and the Volkswagen Virtus carry some pleasure again into the C-sedan phase. But they nonetheless haven’t damaged the dominance of the SUV, although there’s now a longtime development that signifies a shift away from sub-compact sedans and a transparent choice for bigger, loaded sedans inside the C-segment.
The VW group sedans constructed on the MQB-AO-IN platform began the transfer in the direction of a rise within the dimension and an extended options record for the C-segment sedan, successfully providing credible options to patrons of entry D-segment (govt) sedans.
In truth, for my part, the dearth of novelty and tech differentiators was the explanation why D-segment sedans have practically been worn out. And now sedans from a category under have outdone the ‘Ds’ with stuff like related automobile options, radar-based driver help methods, and many consolation and comfort options within the cabin.
Hyundai has been lining up the launch of the brand new era Verna and that has led to opponents adjusting their product choices to deal with the strain from what might be within the offing from the Hyundai sedan.
Honda did a fast facelift and introduced its Level 2 ADAS options to the common City variants too (not only for the eHEV hybrid variants). Volkswagen added some options to the Virtus and did a minor re-jig of its variant technique.
So, what’s it with the sixth era Verna that appears so intimidating to the competitors? Can it carry the mojo again into the sedan market?
Hyundai says that the Verna will sit within the mid-large sedan class; kind of straddling two dimension segments, and that it’ll even be mid-high in value and worth positioning. The phase at the moment clocks about 6,000 items per 30 days in gross sales, and is poised to develop as more patrons uncover the enjoyment of driving a sedan.
Two facets in regards to the new 2023 Verna that aligns with the target of wooing patrons away from SUVs is the distinctive design and the large record of options that’s even higher than vehicles from a phase above.
Over the previous few weeks, Hyundai had supplied a sneak peek into the design of the brand new Verna and that LED strip throughout the face of the sedan is a component that all of us knew was coming. Yet, seeing it within the flesh virtually makes the Verna look idea automobile like.
The LED pilot lamps improve the visible width of the Verna and sit just under the sting of the bonnet. The parametric design grille takes up many of the entrance fender under the LED strip and the principle headlamps themselves are positioned on the outer edges of the grille. The total entrance profile is now sleeker, with the dipping nostril and the minimalist lighting parts.
It can also be apparent that the Verna has now grown in proportions. It is about 95mm longer, 36mm wider and its wheelbase is 70mm more in comparison with the earlier era Verna.
The impression of the elevated dimensions is even more when the brand new Verna is considered from the aspect. This can also be the angle from which the roofline and the sportback, GT-like rear finish’s design is finest captured. The design language of the brand new Verna has references from different Hyundai fashions greater up within the hierarchy just like the Tucson and the Sonata. That affect may be seen even within the waistline and aspect character line creases.
My favorite angle to view the brand new Verna is the rear.
I really feel the design’s total power comes from that interesting rear. The LED strip that connects the tail-lamps, the pert GT-like design coming from the steeply sloped roofline, the stubby boot lid and the layered mild parts and the fender ship nice visible impression.
The SX trim variant additionally will get brushed aluminium door handles and particular 16-inch alloys.
There is lots of European flavour to the brand new Verna’s design. The design excesses of the previous have given option to a more universally interesting design and that extends into the cabin too. My first check mule was the SX variant of the 1.5MPi petrol with the IVT (clever variable transmission) gearbox.
The dual-tone beige and black color theme for the cabin actually works for the inside, giving the cabin a crisp, recent look. Adding to that sense of brightness and magnificence is the somewhat minimalist format for the dashboard and centre console.
The perforated and stitched beige leatherette entrance seats are ventilated and heated (within the high trims).
The dashboard fascia can also be an identical soft-touch panel with stitched leatherette. After seeing so many upright, flat dashboards in a number of SUVs, it’s good to see a curved, driver-focused one in a sedan.
The floating built-in unit on high of the dashboard can also be curved and options the ten.25-inch infotainment display screen and the digital instrument cluster adjoining to one another.
There is 64-colour ambient lighting within the cabin, with embedded mild inserts within the door panel, dashboard and the instrument cluster altering color, even primarily based on drive mode chosen.
The attention-grabbing function within the cabin is the automated local weather management’s digital contact display screen, which on the push of a button modifications to a menu choice for the infotainment.
I suppose that would assist hold your eyes on the highway whereas trying to select from the menu and proceed driving.
A complete record of different comfort options within the cabin embrace wi-fi smartphone charger, a cooled glovebox, guide privateness curtain for the rear glass, sensible trunk opening and an 8-speaker Bose music system (SX(O) trim variant).
The high spec trim variants of the 1.5GDi Turbo engine additionally get all these options, but it surely options an all-black cabin color theme. The new Verna’s cabin is genuinely more spacious.
The improve in wheelbase has translated into improved legroom and kneeroom on the rear. There can also be more shoulder room introduced on by the elevated width.
The boot is claimed to supply a segment-leading 528-litres of bags room.
The new Verna is being supplied with two engines, every of which get two gearbox choices.
There isn’t any diesel engine on supply anymore, it’s now solely two petrol engines. And considered one of them is the 1.5-litre Turbo GDi petrol engine that was lately added as an possibility for Hyundai’s 3-row SUV – the Alcazar.
The 1,482cc, 4-cylinder, turbocharged direct-injection engine is being supplied in just about the identical state of tune within the Verna, producing a formidable 160PS of peak energy and 253Nm of torque.
This engine may be paired with both a 6-speed guide transmission or the 7-speed DCT (dual-clutch) automated gearbox. On the highway, the primary impression is that it’s a bit much less thrilling than I believed it may be. But shortly the powertrain’s true potential comes by means of when it’s egged on to ship bursts of acceleration.
My check drive of the 1.5 Turbo GDi DCT took me down the New Delhi-Mumbai expressway. The DCT’s gearshifts are fast and imperceptible. The turbo kicks in early and as soon as the visitors thins, that low-end torque helps pull the Verna into triple-digit speeds with ease.
Of course, guide gear choice continues to be one of the simplest ways to make sure that the automobile performs to your bidding. And that’s potential utilizing the steering wheel mounted paddles.
The different engine on supply for the brand new Verna is the 1.5 MPi petrol mill. The 1,497cc, 4-cylinder petrol engine delivers a peak output of 115PS and peak torque of 143.8Nm. This can also be a refined mill and revs eagerly. Though it feels a tad much less peppy in comparison with the Turbo GDi however it’s nonetheless participating to drive. And there’s fairly sufficient energy and torque to dip into even whereas driving in metropolis visitors; you’ll simply want a bit more throttle enter and hold the engine on a boil.
After a mixture of metropolis and freeway, my check mule’s (1.5 MPi) MID indicated a mean of 12.6kmpl. The rated mileages for the 2 engines are about 20kmpl and 19kmpl, with the auto trannys delivering a smidgen more than the manuals.
Both the engines are refined, and the cabin is properly insulted and quiet. The experience high quality is great, with the suspension feeling prefer it has been softened only a bit more than the earlier gen. The new Verna dismissed unhealthy roads and potholes with ease, with barely any of the impression being despatched into the cabin.
Understeer which was a difficulty with the fourth-gen Verna can also be virtually utterly gone within the new mannequin. There had been drive modes that I may select from for each the powertrains, sports activities mode improves throttle response and additionally stiffens up the steering help.
It is sweet to see the deal with security, and many of the options are supplied throughout trims apart from the bottom variant.
There is an entire suite of ADAS (superior driver help methods) options on supply, making the brand new Verna a Level 2 autonomous automobile.
The most helpful ADAS throughout my drive, and prone to be sensible on our roads, had been rear cross visitors alert, adaptive cruise management, blind spot collision warning and lane preserving help. My solely quibble with the brand new Verna was that whereas there’s sufficient chunk, there’s not sufficient brake pedal really feel. The high trim 1.5 Turbo GDi is obtainable with all 4 disc brakes.
The new Verna is full of more tech, together with about 67 related automobile options, many who have already been supplied with different fashions within the portfolio. There is an entire record of voice instructions to activate particular capabilities within the Verna. The addition to this function is the brand new ‘Hinglish’ instructions recognition.
The new Verna has been priced within the vary of ₹10.9 lakh to ₹17.4 lakh, which is only a bit decrease than the value tags of a few of its opponents. The Verna can also be more loaded with options in comparison with a lot of its counterparts within the sedan phase.