Honda introduced the Amaze in 2013 as their 1st Compact Sedan for the Indian market. The Amaze has been selling in pretty good numbers since then. In 2018 Honda introduced the 2nd Generation of the Amaze which was radically different to the 1st gen in terms of looks, dimensions, features and styling. Now Honda has given a mid life facelift to the Amaze and we have driven it for our road test review that will get you all the information on it.
Food for Thought
Honda has sold more than 4.5 lakh units of the Amaze since its launch way back in 2013. The 1st Gen Amaze was based on the Brio platform, infact it was a Brio with a boot attached to it. The Amaze was the 1st car model from Honda in India to get a i-DTEC Diesel engine which was specially developed for our market. The Amaze was developed at Honda R&D Asia Pacific in Bangkok, Thailand. The 2nd generation Amaze is built on a all new platform of its own unlike the 1st gen. In February 2015 the Amaze was the highest selling model for the Japanese firm, having sold 7,163 units in that month.
‘Amazing Compact Limousine’ is what Honda likes to call the Amaze. And we don’t disagree, it looks much bigger than it actually is. The exterior styling and design remains the same except for a few changes. The updated Amaze’s front design continues to emphasize the vehicles low and wide styling. Character lines starting from the front grille to the headlights present a front face identity and Hondas signature ‘Solid Wing Face’, which highlights the premium expression. The Honda Solid Wing Face concept is also seen on Honda’s global models, such as the Civic. On this the updated 2021 Amaze the grille now gets two more horizontal chrome lines under it giving it more prominence and premiumness.
The headlights also get a major update and now come with white projector along with the neatly integrated signature LED position lamps (DRL’s) which are now more bright and bold as compared to the older Amaze while the turn signal indicator continues to sit right above it. The front bumper gets a nice restyling with white LED round fog lamps coming in place of the old halogen ones and also neat looking boomerang shaped chrome insert around the fog lamps giving the face the chrome treatment that Indians love.
On the sides the long sleek line from the bonnet to the roof line gives the look of the more solid sedan. The ORVM’s come integrated with the LED turn signal indicators. The B-pillar is blacked-out, giving the car a more up market feel. Updates on the sides include meaty chrome door handles which remind you of the ones seen on the City and dual tone alloy wheels that look sporty. The 2021 Amaze drives on 15 inch dual tone alloys that look sporty.
At the rear the wrap-around taillights remain the same but now get an all LED ‘C’ shaped glow in them. The tail lamps continue to extend themselves into the boot lid. The rear bumper also gets a major restyle and now gets a thick chrome band that flows across it along with slim style stop reflectors, these make the car look a lot wider and larger than it actually is.
The roof continues to feature the shark fin antenna and misses out on the Sun/Moon roof. The boot space continues to stand at a class leading 420 liters.
The interiors on the 2021 Honda Amaze also receive some good updates. Getting into the driver’s seat, the first thing you notice is the airy cabin and the dual-tone dashboard with lot of silver accents in place of the piano-black accents on the old Amaze. The cabin has always been a hallmark of the Amaze with typical Honda styling and premium feel, the wide instrument panel with curved console shape at the end, exudes quality and offers wide visibility. The center controls are easy to use and very practical. All the switches are within arm’s reach.
The instrument console also remains unchanged and gets all the tell-tale lights laid out on a all sharp and crisp background. The three-spoke steering wheel now gets silver inserts instead of the black ones and also comes with audio controls, voice command, cruise control switches & also paddle shift for petrol CVT. The steering gets manual adjust for height but there is no adjust for reach.
The audio-visual navigation as Honda likes to call it, more commonly known as the Honda DigiPad 2 is a 7-inch WVGA 800*480 resolution touch screen display which supports Apple CarPlay & Android Auto. What changes on the AVN system is the addition of the reverse camera modes which now has three options to choose, normal, zoom and top view just like the one seen on the City and Jazz.
You also get two USB slots on the top-end model, one of which supports fast charging with 1.5amp output and the other one is standard 1amp output. Wireless mobile charging is not included on the feature list. The start-stop switch is placed on the right side of the steering wheel, its blue in color when you enter the car and turns red once you start the engine. The driver side window gets the auto-down switch. Both the ORVM’s are electrically adjustable and foldable.
The front seats are wide, well cushioned and extremely supportive with good under-thigh support, shoulder and back support alike. The driver seat can be manually adjusted for height. The rear passenger seat is quite spacious with decent under-thigh support; the almost flat floor-board makes it even more comfortable. Sadly the headrest on the rear seat is non-adjustable. The rear passenger seat gets center armrest with glass holders. The seat is wide and can comfortably accommodate three passengers. All the door panels get a one-liter bottle holder. The front seats also get rear-pockets for passengers seating behind. The all-Amaze comes equipped with standard safety features like the driver & passenger airbags, reverse parking sensors and also gets ABS with EBD across all variants; the top-end model also comes with reversing camera with fixed guidelines.
Engine, Transmission & Drive
The 2021 Honda Amaze engine options remain the same with the 1.2L i-VTEC engine that gives a total power output of 90PS and torque output of 110Nm @ 4800rpm mated to a 5-speed manual transmission and a 7-speed automatic CVT (continuous variable transmission). For diesel lovers you have the 1.5L i-DTEC engine delivers maximum power output of 100PS and 200Nm of torque with the manual transmission, and 80PS and 160Nm of torque with the CVT transmission.
We drove the petrol manual and the diesel manual for our test. Both the versions come with very good refinement and noise levels with absolutely no vibration, one could barely tell whether the engine is running or not, but we were hooked to the torque and power of the diesel. The diesel was surprisingly quiet at idle, vibrations were well in control even on the move. The gear ratios are well spaced out on both the petrol and diesel variants, the shifts are slick, very typical of Honda’s and positive. The clutch was light and progressive on both the variants.
The Honda Amaze has been a very important model for the Japanese car maker, with this facelift which may seem small but what they have managed to do is that the Compact Sedan now looks more mature, premium and up to date with time. The Amaze drives well with typical Honda traits that continue with this update. The sedan remains a class leader in terms of cabin space and comfort. With this timely update the Honda Amaze once again becomes a car model that should surely be considered on your list if you looking for a compact sedan right now.