Car Make – Maruti Suzuki
Model – Ciaz
Variant – Diesel
Trim Level – ZDi+ (top end)
Kms covered – 3,460 kms
Fuel Efficiency – 23.50 kmpl (best), 19.50 kmpl (worst)
There are reviews… and then there is the long term review. What’s the difference? Well, long term reviews are more like ownership reviews, where the car/motorcycle is with us for a much longer period and we use it in our daily lives just like someone would use their own vehicle. That allows the reviewer to get more time with it and helps in monitoring the wider and finer aspects of it.
In our very first long term review, we start off with the segment’s best seller, the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz SHVS Diesel! We’ve had the pleasure of having the fully loaded top end ZDi+ trim for the test. The Ciaz Diesel was with us for almost 3-4 months, slowly becoming a part of our daily routine. From early morning school drops and pick-ups for my daughter, daily runs to the gym, to weekly market spins. Monthly trips to the supermarket were never without the Ciaz. Countless airport drops and pickups have been successfully completed by this super-efficient one!
When launched, the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz was a highly anticipated car model from the biggest car maker in India. This is the car that replaced the SX4 and was a sort of a mini flagship model for Maruti. It did not leave any stone unturned on this one by loading the car with more features than its rivals then. The Ciaz is the longest and the widest, with the largest cabin area among its rivals in the segment. And at 2,560mm it also has the biggest wheelbase in its class.
To start off, the Ciaz is a good-looking car on the outside. It comes with an excellent build quality that Maruti Suzuki has off late got on all its newer car models. The design and shape is typical Japanese, practical and trendy. Very much liked on the outside are the segment’s first projector headlights, excellent for your night drives. The center-grill with the prominent four horizontal chrome slats along with the Suzuki `S’ badge placed on it is also my favorite on the Ciaz.
On the convenience side you have the keyless entry on the front two doors, where you can enter unlocking the door by just pressing the button on the door handle, and also lock the car when you exit by doing the same; provided you are carrying the remote key on you. This is also true for the boot lid that has a keyless sensor on it. The glass area on the Ciaz is large, giving it an airy feel and making the car look larger too. On the rear, you have neat-looking tail lamps on the body, as well as on the boot section, and a deep infused design on the right corners of the rear bumper with reflectors on them. Chunky 16-inch tyres (195/55 R16) with multi-spoke silver alloys look very sporty. The Ciaz boasts of a boot capacity of 510 litres with good loading unloading available, which proved to be the biggest boon during our runs to the airport or the supermarket.
On the inside, it is extremely roomy with generous amount of space available thanks to the longest wheelbase, width and height amongst its class. Beige leather upholstery along with twin tone dash with wood inserts add to the classiness and elegance of the cabin area. The driver’s seat comes with manual height adjust that is very handy for us Indians because some of us like to drive with the seat set at the top most level. The steering comes with a leather wrapping, manual height-adjust, and steering-mounted control buttons for the infotainment system, phone calls and cruise control.
The instrument cluster consists of easy-to-read round dials with a soft blue glow along the trim. A neat multi-function display in the middle reads of the trip reading, average fuel consumption, distance to empty and overall fuel consumption. This is a very handy feature. The Ciaz also gets a full touchscreen center display, which is a 7-inch full color SmartPlay infotainment system with Apple CarPlay. Along with FM radio and USB connectivity, you also get GPS navigation driven by an SD card included along with reverse camera, wired and wireless mobile connectivity. Using this infotainment system is extremely easy and intuitive, touch response and feel is good and you won’t need to upgrade the head unit ever over this one. Effortless connectivity combined with ease of use and good touch screen response are its key highlights.
A single zone climate control does an amazing job in keeping things cool inside the cabin of this car. Currently it’s 40-42 degrees in Mumbai and the true test of a car air-conditioner is during these months. The Ciaz passes this rigorous summer test with total ease. Aided with AC vents placed between the front seats for rear passengers, the cabin temperature dips in no time during the hottest afternoons here in Mumbai. The Ciaz impressed us with a lot of storage bins available across the cabin areas. You have bottle holders in all the four door pads, can holders in the center console and map pockets behind the front seats. A key/purse storage bin just above the extreme right side AC vent comes real handy. A neat little, closable storage bin between the front seats doubles up as your arm rest adding to the convenience.
With comfortable seating, we’ve had some lovely, long drives in this one. Rear seat comfort is the best in class with tons of head room and knee room, aided with good shoulder room. The integrated headrests on the rear are very comfy. Passengers who are 6 feet tall sit comfortably with leg room still available here. Charger port for the rear passengers is another big boon on the Ciaz that is placed just below the rear AC vent. The rear seat also has a foldable center arm rest with can holder integrated in it. Small, thoughtful touches like height adjust front seat belts, tiny pockets on the shoulder sides of the front seats that come handy to keep coins etc. are really appreciable. What’s missing, is the dead pedal that should have been there, as it comes handy for those long drives. Needless to say that the top end Ciaz comes with all the safety equipment, front airbags, ABS with EBD, reverse parktronics, auto dimming rear mirror, engine immobiliser etc.
On the engine part, the Ciaz comes powered with the tried and trusted Fiat-derived 1.3 DDiS Diesel engine. Now this is the engine that has been in the Maruti Suzuki family of cars since long. On the Ciaz, it comes with 90 PS with VGT and 200 Nm of torque. I loved the sheer class of the engine coupled with some amazing power delivery. Drive feel is very positive and the steering feels very lively with a good amount of feedback on it. The real fun starts once the car crosses the 1800 RPM, that’s when the turbo comes on. The drive quality is excellent, suspension tuned on the softer side and the 16-inch tyres soak up the bumps. The Ciaz did not scrape a single speed breaker even when loaded with 5 people onboard, thanks to the good ground clearance of 170mm, which is again best in its class.
Maruti Suzuki claims a fuel efficiency of 28.09 kmpl under their test condition on the SHVS variant that is a mini hybrid. On traffic signals if you come to a full stall, the engine switches itself off and then when you press the clutch, the engine starts on its own, saving precious fuel. There is brake energy regeneration that charges the battery when you apply the brakes, also when you are cruising or decelerating, the ISG motor generator supplies power to the engine, hence aiding in higher fuel efficiency. During the time the Ciaz was with us, we got a best fuel efficiency of 23.50 kmpl and a worst of 19.50 kmpl with the AC always on.
The Ciaz is a very well-packaged car with tons of features and lots of practicality and comfortable, coupled up with best in class service support and after sales network that Maruti is known for. It definitely is a very practical sedan to buy in its class. Ciaz….You will be missed!!
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz SHVS Diesel Photo Gallery:
Pic Credits: Ritesh Madhok