Compact hatchbacks with Automated Manual Transmission (AMT) are rapidly gaining popularity in this contemporary time owing to their efficiency, ease of driving, economical fuel consumption and overall price. The carmakers are aggressively focusing on this segment resulting in a lot of good option for you as a prospective buyer. However, despite a tough competition in this segment, both Renault Kwid and Maruti Suzuki Celerio have emerged as strongest contenders.
The Renault Kwid has been a very popular small car in India since its launch. With 98 percent localization of manufacturing, the car was launched at the least possible price without compromising much on features. It defies all laws of a small car with its completely new architecture and an SUV look-alike design.
The Maruti Suzuki Celerio shot into prominence with the USP of being the first hatchback in India to be equipped with Automated Manual Transmission (AMT). The car was launched at the Auto Expo 2014 and has taken the small car segment by storm.
Pioneered by the Maruti Celerio, AMT transmission has quite become a norm in small cars. The Renault Kwid, for example, is the perfect competitor for Celerio. Hence, to make things fair and square, it would be indispensable for us to compare only the automatic transmission variants.
The physical appearance of the Renault Kwid is enough to make a statement among all other small cars. With an SUV-like body and butch presence, the Renault Kwid does stand out in the crowd. Despite having a smaller frame, the wider front grille, extra cladding on the sides and a high ground clearance of 180 mm adds to the imposing design.
The Maruti Celerio, on the other hand, has a more conventional hatchback design with bold shoulder lines. The overall design carries an essence of a typical Suzuki hatchback with a newly designed two-slatted grille connecting the two angular headlamps. A set of almost parallel lines, running across both the sides make it look much smaller.
The Renault Kwid is one perfect example of an all-in-one car. The French automaker has, indeed, thrown everything at it. And the results are clear. The interior dashboard holds a digital instrument cluster, with a large 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system. Instead of a tachometer, there is a gear shift indicator. The infotainment cluster is integrated with Bluetooth and navigation. Despite being small in size, the company has done a good job to make it more spacious from inside. There are a large 300-litre boot space and ample head room even for the rear seat passengers.
In comparison to that, the Maruti Suzuki Celerio holds a loud, yet subdued interiors. This top-of-the-line Celerio has black and beige upholstery. On the center console dashboard, there is music system with integrated Bluetooth. There are enough headroom and legroom for the rear passengers as well. However, a third passenger in the rear seat may find too difficult to adjust during a long journey. Despite having a larger boot compared to other hatchbacks, the Celerio’s 235-litre is lesser than the 300-litre of the Kwid.
The top-end Renault Kwid is fitted with a 1.0-litre, three cylinder engine which has 999cc displacement. This engine is capable of making 67 bhp of maximum power at 5,500 revolutions per minute and a peak torque of 91 Nm at 4,250 revolutions per minute. This power is sent to the front wheels via a 5-speed automatic gearbox. However, drive modes are not available.
On the other hand, the Maruti Suzuki Celerio has a 1.0-litre K1B petrol engine under the bonnet, which makes a displacement of 998cc. This motor is capable is making 67 bhp of power at 6,000 revolutions per minute and 90 Nm of maximum torque at 3,500 revolutions per minute. The power is transmitted to the wheels through a 5-speed automatic gearbox. Hence, the power production and transmission are the same in both the cars.
After having put the Renault Kwid AMT and Maruti Celerio on comparison with different parameters, we can draw that both the cars are almost identical in the engine and transmission parameters. Having said that, while both the cars can be driven at the same speed, with the same load on, there are other factors that are good enough to draw a line between them. The Kwid looks like a mini SUV while the Celerio looks like a conventional hatchback. The cabin space and boot space of the Kwid are better too, along with a much advanced touchscreen infotainment against the Bluetooth integrated music system of the Celerio.
The Renault Kwid, despite offering a wide range of features, is marginally more fuel efficient with a lesser price tag. Hence, if you are one of the prospective buyers, but facing a dilemma of which one to choose among the two AMT enabled cars, you might find yourself better off choosing Kwid over the India-made Celerio.