Hatchbacks are the need of the hour in a country like India and every car manufacturer here knows the importance of one. No wonder, each and every mainstream car manufacturer either has a small car or a hatchback in its portfolio. But in this comparison, we take the most popular hatchback currently in India - the Maruti Swift and pit it against the Hyundai Grand i10 which is about to become popular. This is not the first time that both Maruti and Hyundai have locked horns but the fact remains that they are the most competitive manufacturers of the lot. The Swift is clearly one of India's favourite car but now that Hyundai has brought out the Grand i10, do they risk losing that popularity?
The Swift, when it was first launched, was a revolution in itself and people couldn't wait for Maruti to bring out a fresher version of it. It was in 2011, that Maruti brought a new car with refreshed interiors and some new features and we Indians fell in love with it all over again. Maruti infact was struggling to deal with rising demand for the car. The car looked brilliant and it still does. But it was mostly the way it drove in Indian conditions that had people falling at its feet.
The Swift comes equipped with a 1.2-litre K-series engine that produces 84bhp and 114Nm of torques. You start loving the amount of power you have in your hands as the Swift is lighter and more agile thanks to the overall weight of the car. The engine is mated to a 5-speed manual transmission which slots in so beautifully that even in start/stop traffic conditions, driving this manual is not a problem. The steering too is light and this makes it easy to get around.
But it was time to check out Hyundai's latest creation as well - the Grand i10. You think that you know what to expect once you get into the car because it's a Hyundai but this one takes you completely by surprise. The fit and finish inside is even better than the Verna. There is a lot of space too inside the car and the features that it comes loaded with clearly out do the ones in the Swift. The centre-console mounted gear lever is similar to what we've seen in the i10 and it really is very convenient.
The Grandi10 gets the same 1.2-litre Kappa VTVT as the i10 but this one churns out 82bhp and 114Nm of torques. Yes it's got less power than the Swift but yet the way it drives around the city compensates for the lack of power. The suspension setup is bang on! Negotiating potholes is not a problem at all because the suspension just absorbs it all. Even the 5-speed manual transmission delivers more than expected. You can easily pull the car at any gear and the transition will be seamless.
Featurewise, both the cars are at par with one another and there are only a few differences but clearly Hyundai has managed to pack in a lot in a car with smaller dimensions than the Swift. But then again, the Swift scores high on the ride and handling department. It is a brilliant car for city driving conditions and a highway cruiser too while the Grand i10 is clearly more at home in the city. The Swift has won a lot of hearts and it clearly still rules the road.
5.87 Lakh * On Road Price (New Delhi)