Car Reviews Reviews

2017 Maruti Suzuki Dzire: Test Drive Review

Parichay Malvankar
Written by Parichay Malvankar

It is one of India’s most loved cars for almost a decade, and well, it is a Maruti Suzuki. This is the 3rd generation Dzire. This time, the brand has dumped the Swift Dzire badging to just call it the Dzire, also, it is coming in much before the next-gen swift which will share similar styling cues.

So now, this all-new Dzire has been priced at a slight premium some might say with prices starting from Rs. 5.45 lakh and go all the way up to 9.41 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). But then, a lot has changed. So is it really a car that you should Dzire? Let’s find out…

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Exteriors:

From the outside, the new Dzire is unlike any previous Swift Dzire which was on sale. This is a completely new design direction taken from the brand. It is much bolder in its appearance now, and looks far more aesthetic than before. Even the boot integration is not quirky anymore and the car looks more of a sedan than a hatchback slapped with a small boot.

At the front, you have a bold multislat grille which chrome surrounds, chrome accents around the fog lamps & a sculpted bonnet which adds some flare to the styling. You also have projector headlamps with LED DRLs which become quite the highlight. Sideways, the car is more curvaceous than before, and looks quite proportionate as well. The 15” precision cut alloy wheels also look great, unlike the single-tone conventional alloys seen before.

Behind, the new Dzire gets LED tail lamps with touches of chrome and a curved bootlid. Now, if you follow the automobile industry closely, you might even find the new Dzire & its voluptuous styling similar to the DC Design Amby Rod which was showcased quite a few years back – the front in particular.

The Dzire continues with its compact dimensions and is just 3995mm in length, resulting in tax benefits.

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Interiors:

Step inside the new Dzire, and the overall look and feel of the cabin is far superior than before. The dual done beige & black interiors with plenty of wooden trim & piano black applique makes the Dzire stand out compared to competition.

A nice twin pot speedo console with MID in between, flat bottom steering wheel with wooden inserts & audio controls, a nice & responsive touchscreen infotainment system with apple car play and android auto and fully automatic air conditioning keeps the feature list in check. The seats are nice & supportive, but we would have loved if they were a shade darker. The light fabric would be a pain to keep clean.

The new Dzire has released more space in the cabin, and can now seat 4 occupants with ease along with accepting the 5th adult for short city runs. While the front cabin works fine for all, the rear seats would make taller occupants squeeze a little. For carrying luggage, you now have 378L of boot space.

One thing most would notice is the touch and feel of plastics used inside. This includes the power window switches, the steering audio controls and even the faux wood inserts which don’t really feel sourced from the best of parts bin. Liveable, but could have been better for sure, especially at this price.

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Engine, performance & handling:

Powering the new Dzire aren’t new engines. You get the same tried & tested setup which includes a 83 HP petrol motor and a 75 HP diesel motor. Both are 4-cylinder engines matched to a 5-speed manual or AMT gearbox. The new Dzire is more refined & even lighter, this has resulted in better efficiency rated at 22 kmpl for the 1.2L k-series petrol motor and 28.4 kmpl for the 1.3L DDiS diesel engine.

Maruti Suzuki has worked well in the NVH department, and the new Dzire feels quite mature now. The cabin remains quite unless the engines are really worked upon. The petrol Dzire which gets the k-series motor is possibly the best petrol car in the segment offering fantastic driveability within city & even on the highway. The diesel motor is familiar territory, with the turbo boost lighting things up when on the roll.

The Dzire is an easy car to drive thanks to the light steering, well defined gear gates on the manual and even the clutch which is easy to operate. Our grouse was that the steering just like its siblings with the EPS setup is not to our taste, and feels vague. No centre pullback either, and this is seen even on the Ciaz.

The AMT gearbox performs as the brand claims. It is always better in performance compared to an amateur driver making the gearshifts for optimum performance & efficiency. Although the brand claims that the AMT now functions better, you still do feel the slight lul between gearshifts. And if you are driving enthusiastically, the AMT might feel a bit jerky too. Of course, for the sporty audience, you have tiptronic option as well.

The Dzire has neutral driving dynamics, and we find it acceptable for segment standards. The ride & handling package is balanced, and the car handles the Indian terrain comfortably to suit the family audience. Suspension setup feels better than before especially in the back seat, with bumps being soaked well.

And one good news, the new Dzire comes with dual airbags & ABS with EBD as standard. Also, the new HEARTECT chassis that it is built around is more crash worthy, so expect better star ratings in crash tests.

So, is the Dzire going to rule the segment? Most definitely, yes. With Maruti Suzuki’s backing and the new package which looks better than ever, the brand has nothing to worry about shipping out this compact sedan. It is said that there’s already over 3 months of waiting period for the Dzire. It has become expensive than before, but given the hassle free ownership experience Maruti Suzuki offers along with their wide service backup justifies the added cost.

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Top 10 features:

  • Fresh contemporary styling, much better than predecessor
  • Bold chrome grille
  • LED projector headlamps with DRL & LED tail lamp
  • 15” Alloy wheels
  • Engine start / stop button
  • Wooden trim inside the cabin
  • Touchscreen infotainment with Apple CarPlay & Android Auto
  • Rear AC vent
  • Dual airbags & ABS with EBD as standard
  • Mileage – 28.4 kmpl for diesel & 22 kmpl for petrol

About the author

Parichay Malvankar

Parichay Malvankar

Founder, owner and editor-in-chief of www.Shifting-Gears.com; a born gearhead, nothing apart from a set of wheels gets his pulse racing.