Verna was introduced in 2006 which had a tough time in the market due to its boring style which didn’t offend everyone but didn’t manage to create any buzz either. Just because of ugly styling Verna showed below average amount of sales figures which got even worse after 2010 updation and despite of being equipped with some segment first features like rear disc brakes, driver armrest etc it completely ignored by buyers. Hyundai than introduced 4th GEN Verna with its latest Fluidic technology which brought immense success for Hyundai and managed to retail over 4000 units a month and dethroned Honda city from the top spot. Strength of 4th GEN Verna was four engine options, automatic transmission, top-notch material quality and high-class safety features and some flaws like poor high-speed handling, rear seat positioning etc.
In early 2014 Honda launched 4th GEN city with Avant-grade equipments and features, diesel engine and the story went the other way around. Hyundai Verna started struggling for healthy sales numbers which got even worse after Maruti Suzuki launched Ciaz with best in segment space and long list if features, so Verna certainly needed refreshment so Hyundai Launched new Verna christened as 4S fluidic Verna with some cosmetic updates.
Talking about the price range Hyundai didn’t made drastic changes in the pricing of new Verna, Petrol variants costs Rs. 7.73-10.15 lakh while its diesel variants carry the price tag of 8.94-12.19 lakh. While it competitors like Honda City, Vento and Maruti Ciaz comes with more affordable price range than Verna.
Engine and Performance:
Hyundai has not made any alteration to the engines of Verna it is continue to be offered in two diesel and two petrol engines. Petrol mill includes 1.4L VTVT with 105bhp power and 138Nm Torque and 1.6L Petrol box with 121bhp power 155Nm torque and 1.6L has an optional 4-speed AT as well. 1.4L delivers 17.4 ARAI certified mileage while 1.6L gives 17 while AT version with 15.7 KPL mileage.
On the other hand Diesel engines include 1.4L U2 CRDi engine with 89bhp power and 220Nm of peak torque while the more powerful 1.6L engine produces 126bhp power and 259Nm of peak torque, both the engines are mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox while 1.6L comes with an optional 4-speed AT. According to Verna’s standard and current demand it should have been either 5 or 6 speed automatic transmission.
The only good point about new Verna’s same engine is an improvement in oil burner’s fuel efficiency, 1.4L now returns 24.8 KMPL over 23.5 KMPL earlier and 1.6L now delivers 23.9 KMPL vs (21.9 KMPL) and 19.8KMPL for 1.6L AT.
Performance of both the trims is more refined now particularly the diesel one, performance is brisk and acceleration is very quick. Petrol motor is also refined with good NVH levels but it is not as peppy as Honda city.
One of the biggest criticisms Verna had the shaky ride and handling on high speeds and soft suspension but in this update Hyundai tries to fix up these issues by stiffen up the suspension set up. Environment inside the cabin remains calm and composed unless you surpass triple digit speed, if you are cruising at that speed on uneven roads this firm suspension doesn’t absorb it all.
Steering wheel of current Verna was too light but new Verna’s steering has more weight but still it’s not communicative as expected, steering feels lifeless around the dead centre position and still feels light on lower speeds. Steering gets better as the speeds build up. Overall Diesel Verna rides better than the petrol one but doesn’t have the same confidence of Linea, Fiesta and Vento.
The fine tuning has definitely helped the ride and handling of new Verna getting better but still it’s not a driver’s car and if you are looking for a car with mature and balanced ride and handling new Verna is not for you.
Space and Dimensions:
Hyundai Verna carries same the dimensions of current GEN Verna with 4370mm x 1700mm x 1475mm along with the wheelbase, ground clearance and boot space of 2570mm, 170mm and 465 liters, respectively. Rear seats continue to feature with same problem i.e. lack of under thigh support for tall passengers though headroom and legroom is sufficient for occupants of all sizes. New Verna gets a new feature called ERGO Lever that is located inside edge of front passenger seat which allows rear passenger to move the front passenger seat to free up more legroom, though it is not spacious as Ciaz and Honda City.
The Current GEN Verna is already a fantastic looking car with its fluidic design philosophy but new Verna 4S gets minor changes that maintains the basic spirit. The last update Verna got was four-year ago so an update was over long due. Front face new Verna now looks compact version of Sonata or Solaris in the international markets. Gone are the days when Verna used to have hexagonal grille it is now replaced by wider two slat chrome grille flanking the H logo, headlight too got changed which looks modern now with projector units in chrome ringed cylinder that is surrounded by Chrome element which bestows the effect of DRLs but they aren’t.
The lower bumper too gets some redesigning like air dam becomes shorter, L shaped fog lamps have been replaced with boomerang shaped fog lamps all these changes makes new Verna look aggressive, contemporary and stylish which will continue to get attention from the mass.
Side profile remains same with sloping roofline, 16” wheels and conventional waist lines. Rear side is also moreover the same with subtle changes like Tail lights now flaunts LED look, Hyundai badge from rear have been removed now embedded with variant name and Merc CLA inspired LED reflectors looks good. Overall, already eye-catching Verna has now become more stylish with new changes and buyers will certainly love it for its look.
Changes inside the cabin are minimal like updated 2DIN music system with 1GB memory, ERGO lever at the inside of front passenger seat and sliding centre armrest. Some of the features still miss out on certain features like no touchscreen unit even as option, no rear A/c vents even Grand i10 has and cruise control etc.
If you think Verna is the most feature rich car of the segment then rethink it because City and Ciaz is loaded with premium features and goodies, New Verna just matches them.
The Two tone dashboard is carried over from existing Verna with high fit and finish, overall quality and feel of the cabin is of top-notch and certainly contains feel good factor. Conventional steering wheel with incorporated controls of audio and bluetooth feels easy to hold. Instrument cluster features white lighting looks clear and easy to read. Multi information display at the centre gets engine temperature, distance to empty, external temperature and usual warning signs.
Central console is equipped with twin AC vents, U-shaped faux inserts, 12V socket, USB, automatic air conditioning, audio controls garnished by little chrome accents looks eye soothing with top-notch quality.
In safety department Verna is the only car in the segment to get six airbags and ABS as standard equipment across all variants. Other than that new Verna is loaded with impact sensing auto door lock-unlock, reverse parking camera/sensors, clutch lock system, central locking and headlight control and many more features which make it a safer car in the segment. Apart from the features it has been awarded with 5-star ratings in NCAP test.
In the ERA of increasing competition Hyundai has some significant changes because cars like City and Ciaz have been eating Verna’s sales pie consistently. After the update new Verna looks Flamboyant which will appeal the Indian buyers. New Verna is loaded with great safety features, equipments and goodies though driving dynamics and space are still cause of concern. After this new Verna’s ride and handling have shown a great improvement but still it is behind from segment benchmarks but it is no longer Verna’s weakness anymore. Hyundai is trusted brand which makes new Verna a convincing buy in the mid size sedan segment after this update.
|Comparison of New 4S Fluidic Hyundai Verna variants|