New Volkswagen Passat Vs Skoda Superb Vs New Honda Accord: Comparison

The luxury car segment in India is growing out to be one of the most vicious battlefields where nearly all of the major heavyweights in the automobile market are locking horns with each other. Volkswagen, Honda and Skoda are presently the leading luxury car makers in India with a lot of models. These come after BMW, Mercedes Benz and Audi which roll out premium luxury segment cars. It has been a while since luxury sedans started making their way to India anticipating it to be one of the most thriving automobile markets in the world. The market of luxury cars in India is increasing at a very fast rate and one of the toughest rivalries lies between Honda, Volkswagen and Skoda.The prime sedans of these respective heavyweightsconsist of Skoda Superb, Honda Accord and Volkswagen Passat. These three cars fall in almost the same price range but we should know what sets them apart in terms of their exteriors, interiors, mileage and ergonomics.

Exteriors: –

Volkswagen Passat: – This is one of the first sedans of Volkswagen in India and is the single conglomerate of one of the most revered brand names in the automobile industry including Bugatti, Skoda, etc. Volkswagen is eagerly looking forward to expanding in India and over the past few years, the company has maintained a reputation amongst its counterparts. The exteriors of Volkswagen Passat have been done up well. There is a sunroof which is totally operated electronically and can be tilted as per the convenience of the person sitting inside. The headlamps fitted to Passat are Bi-Xenon which comes with cornering lights. VolkswagenPassat comes in two tire variants one of which is 16-inch whereas the other one is 17-inch. These are purely alloy wheels that have been installed in order to give the car a sporty as well as luxurious outlook. The windows on the sedan have been fitted with chrome-plated strips and the boot lid of the car also has chrome-plated strip. Below the headlamps, there are day-time LED lines which we usually get to see in Audi sedans.

Volkswagen Passat in India

Skoda Superb: – It is said to have one of the most elegant designs ever as Skoda owners are one of the most proud customers owing to the fact that when it comes to interiors as well as exteriors of any Skoda car, it is bound to strike a chord with car enthusiasts. The dynamics of Skoda Superb are praiseworthy and the exteriors of the sedan are done up by pure chrome. Superb is also available in 16-inch alloys and 17-inch alloys. The turn indicators come with OVRMs. There is an additional boot lid spoiler attached to the car and the exhaust tail pipes of the car have been properly polished in order to prevent them from corroding. Skoda has always been appreciated for the cars it has rolled out of its unit and now the automobile heavyweight is looking forward to bringing more and more inputs to India which will be based on totally new designs. The first car of Skoda to make its way into India was Octavia which was highly revered owing to its dynamic exteriors as well as interiors.

Skoda Superb in India

New Honda Accord: – Honda Accord has always been showered praises by car enthusiasts as the sedan is considered as the trump card of Honda. The exterior design of the car is sleek and stylish along with the length of the car. The design of the New Honda Accord is said to be much better than its predecessor as the successor comes laden with an Electric sunroof along with Front Chrome Grill. The trunk of the car also has a spoiler and Accord comes with large alloy wheels giving it an altogether more dynamic look. The OVRMs are of the same colour as the body of the car and are attached with turn indicators. There are fog lamps attached both to the front headlights as well as rear taillights. Antenna of the car is purely made of glass which though makes it fragile but helps in catching radio frequencies easily. Additional features of the car include the hood damper, aerodynamic sideline, etc.

Honda Accord in India

Interiors: –

Volkswagen Passat: – It seems that maybe a Passat fares well when it comes to interiors as Volkswagen has done a lot to give the best to their customers. The interiors of Volkswagen Passat have a lot to offer to its customers.The quality as well as crafting of Volkswagen Passat has been done with optimum expertise in order to give the passengers an elegant feel.The panels fitted in Passat are colour oriented and well-coordinatedalong with which, there is an instrument that is fitted in order to ensure the proper functioning of the panels. The panel of the car has been designed using premium wood and the seats of the car have been done up using premium leather of the best quality. The whole of the interiors give a very luxurious outlook to the car and thus this is what sets Volkswagen Passat apart from New Honda Accord and Skoda Superb.

Volkswagen Passat interiors

Skoda Superb: – Though Volkswagen fares well when it comes to interiors, we should not underestimate Skoda as the interiors given to Skoda Superb are class apart. Skoda has ensured that they live up to the expectations of the customers and thus have constructed the upholstery using premium nappa leather.There are quite many upmarket features that have been put into Superb such as Leather gear knob, Leather steering wheel, Power lumbar support, Wooden garnish on instrument cluster, etc. Skoda has always ensured that their cars complement the interiors and exteriors. Thus in order to compete with other cars of its class, Skoda Superb was given lavish and elegant interiors as the exteriors of the car received thumbs-up.

Skoda Superb interiors

New Honda Accord: – If Skoda Superb and Volkswagen Passat have impressive interiors, then Honda fares well over both of these owing to the fact that the interior cabin of Honda Accord is much more spacious than that of its counterparts. Thus, the passengers seated inside Accord will have more leg room than those seated inside Superb and Passat. Along with leg room, the passengers are treated to a better shoulder space as well. Three passengers can easily be seated in the rear seat comfortably. The seats have been done up using high-quality leather and are beige coloured. Upholstery has wooden trims which add to the elegance of the car and thus Honda Accord also scores well in terms of interiors.

Honda Accord interiors

Ergonomics: –

Volkswagen Passat: – The latest version of Volkswagen Passat is available only in the diesel variant in India owing to the fact that Volkswagen realized how the demand for diesel cars was increasing in India due to the sky-rocketing price hike of petrol. More and more people are now going for diesel and CNG powered cars rather than petrol. New Volkswagen Passat will be powered by a 2.0 L 4-cylinder CRDi Diesel enginewhich has a capability of churning out a maximum power of 170PS at 4200rpm along with a maximum torque of 350Nm at an impressive 1750-2500rpm range.

Volkswagen Passat Ergonomics

Skoda Superb: –There are a total of 3 engine variants in which Skoda Superb is available in the Indian market. One of these is the 1.8 Litre petrol variant which has the capability of delivering a maximum power of 160PS at 4000rpm whereas the other variant is a 2.0 L diesel engine capable of churning out a maximum power of 260 PS at 1000rpm along with a peak torque of 35kgm at 1750rpm. A third variant is there and this is the powerful 3.6 Litre petrol engine that shells out a maximum power of 141.4 PS at 4000rpm.

Skoda Superb ergonomics

New Honda Accord: – Honda Accord unfortunately is not available in diesel variant and has only two variants both of which run on petrol. First are the 2.4 Litre 4-cylinder i-Vtecpetrol engines which hold the capability of churning out maximum power of 180PS at 6500rpm and then are the 3.5 Litre petrol engines that shells out a maximum power of 275 PS at 6200rpm along with a maximum torque of 339 Nm at 5000rpm.

Honda Accord ergonomics

Mileage: –

Volkswagen Passat: – Volkswagen Passat has only one engine and that gives out a mileage of 11kmpl if the car is moving in a city but in case of highways it goes up to 15kmpl.

Volkswagen Passat engine

Skoda Superb: –Superb has two petrol variants and one diesel variant out of which the 1.8 Litre petrol variant gives out a mileage of 9kmpl in city and 13kmpl on highways whereas the 3.6 Litre petrol engine gives a mileage of 6kmpl in city and 9kmpl on highways. The 2.0 Litre diesel enginesgive a mileage of 11kmpl in city and 14kmpl on highways.

Skoda Superb engine

Honda Accord: – Honda Accord comes with two engine variants both of which run on petrol. The 2.4 Litre petrol variant engines are capable of giving a mileage of 8kmpl in city which increases to 11kmpl on highways. On the contrary, the second engines variant are the 3.5 Litre petrol which has the capability of giving a mileage of 7kmpl when the car is moving in a city and this mileage increases to 9kmpl as soon as it enters highway.

Honda Accord engine

Conclusion:– If all the above features are to be considered then we should say that in case of exteriors, Skoda Superb fares better than Volkswagen Passat but stays in tough competition with New Honda Accord. But when it comes to interiors, Volkswagen takes the lead and when it comes to mileage, once again Volkswagen takes the front seat.

Paris Motor Show Review

The recently concluded Paris Motor Show premieres a whole host of innovative cars

The 2010 Paris Motor Show set a number of records the least being that it premiered over a 100 new cars either in concept or production form and also included the most number of participating countries. Most interestingly was the fact that there were 12 million plus people that attended it and for those of us that were unlucky enough to miss it, we have the most interesting snippets from the show from amazing concept vehicles to futuristic green automobiles.

Volkswagen Passat

Volkswagen made a very quite but ultimately important debut at the French show by unveiling their new Passat which is expected to hit markets by the beginning of 2011. It is built on the same underpinnings and specs as the outgoing model, but this new version is completely reworked with aggressive styling. There are new headlights and taillights, front façade made up of a bold, chrome-accented grille and trendy fog lights. The interiors have also been redesigned and don a fresh, modern look.

Available in the new Passat will be the 1.4 liter TSI, 1.8 liter TSI and 2.0 liter TSI petrol engines as well as a 1.6 liter BlueMotion motor and 2.0 liter TDI diesel engine. Transmission and gearbox will include the six-speed manual and six and seven-speed dual clutch DSG automatic.

Lamborghini Sesto Elemento

Lamborghini was aptly represented at the show having one of the most stunning display stands where they showcased their latest model the Sesto Elemento. Literally translated ‘Sesto Elemento’ stands for ‘sixth element’ referring to ‘carbon’, which is the sixth element in the periodic table. The car uses ample amount of carbon fibre making it very light weight and the intention of Lamborghini has been to get power-to-weight ratio comparable to that of a bike.

The Sesto Elemento is powered by the same engine from the Gallardo Superleggera, which is the 570 horsepower behemoth. The weight of the car is down to 999 kgs and is lighter than the lightest Gallardo by a full 341 kgs. Astonishing 0-100 time of just 2.5 seconds should scare the bejeebers out of anyone. Be afraid…Be very Afraid!!!!

BMW X3

BMW was able to showcase two of its more interesting offerings – the 6-series concept and more importantly the new X3. The new X3 has grown in size and has become like a little brother to the X5 getting a smarter, larger feel to it. The front end is also slightly more boxy with a few more aggressive lines and creases. The inside of the new X3 also affords more space than the outgoing model with some better styling as well. An exciting addition to the new X3 is the inclusion of a variable damper control, which allows the driver to tweak the steering response, suspension, throttle response, etc. These features should excite buyers looking forward to owning the Baby Bimmer.

Along with the X3 was the concept 6-series which gets all new look. BMW has decide to finally stick to what it knows and have done away with the ugly looks of the present 6-series replacing it with a much better, elegant and more sharper styling. Though the showcase vehicle at the show was only a concept, BMW chief design supervisor, Adrian van Hooydonk, who is taking BMW design and styling to new directions, says that the final production vehicle is not going to be very different.

Hyundai ix20

Hyundai decided to use the Paris Motor Show to debut its latest version of the i20 the ix20. This car is supposed to play the role of the MPV for the Korean car manufacturer. It has the look of a beefier i20 and its target market is a niche segment, which is why the ‘x’ tag is used. Hyundai has come up with a concept for their niche market cars and will give them an ‘x’ tag. The ix20 will be able to seat 5 people comfortably and will be available in 1.4 liter petrol and diesel versions. There is also news floating that a 1.6 liter petrol engine will be available but this will only come with an automatic transmission.

There was also a very interesting little car at the Hyundai stand – the i20 Sport. This should be a car that excites quite a few people especially those in India and the car is fitted with a very sporty body kit. The i20 Sport Edition gets a body kit courtesy of Brabus, the independent car maker for Mercedes. It also has smoked-out windows, 17-inch Brabus wheels and a super sporty interior complete with bucket seats and racing steering wheel. There was no information regarding engine specs though and that was in all honesty quite a drag.

Suzuki Swift

Most exciting to see was the buzz at the Suzuki stand where the new Suzuki Swift was showcased. The new Swift is expected to be on sale in the early part of next year in Europe quickly followed by India. The new Suzuki Swift has is longer than the outgoing model is 90 mm longer overall having a 50 mm longer wheelbase. Suzuki claims that the handling and ride quality are better than the current model with better overall dynamics.

The slightly increased wheelbase allows for a slight increase in rear space and to be quite honest every little bit is important in a car being sold in one of the most competitive segments. Saying that don’t expect the performance of the car to go up greatly with the main evolution restricted to aesthetic modifications like newer headlights, etc. The inside of the car also gets a few upgrades but it is not a major leap forward. Suzuki has basically stuck to the adage that ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’

The Suzuki Kizashi was also on show and will be eagerly awaited in India, having been debuted internationally earlier this year.

Chevrolet Aveo, Captiva, Cruze

The Chevrolet exhibition stand was one of the busiest ones around at the Paris Motor Show as the American car manufacturer choose to debut up to four new (or should I say newish) cars. These included the Aveo, Cruze hatchback, Captiva and Orlando models. The Aveo was the most impressive as it featured the most upgrades and styling improvements from the current model. The car is now much longer, wider and has more interior space. The front fascia get a sweet uplift in the form of twin headlights, lower front bumper, rear door handles integrated into the C-pillar and an overall much more aggressive styling.

Engine offerings are expected to be 1.2 liter and 1.4 liter petrol engines along with a 1.3 liter diesel motor. There were also pleasant facelifts for the Captiva and a new hatchback model of the Cruze. This should come as an exciting piece of news to the Indian market and hopefully we will get to see this version of the Cruze in the country soon.     The new Captiva and Orlando are to be seen in the Indian market sometime next year.

Volvo V60 R-Design

Volvo already showcased the V60 and S60 models and it took the opportunity of the Paris Motor Show to showcase the new upgraded R-Design version of the V60. The R-Design version gets an overall makeover with new exterior and interior design giving the vehicle a much more sportier look. The car comes with sports alloy wheels and also features a damper system which is new and provides sharper handling characteristics. The V60 and S60 models will come with all the engines currently offered by Volvo and should prove to be a decent success in the market.

Mercedes-Benz CLS and S250 CDI

Mercedes-Benz was one of the more surprising exhibition stands this year at the motor show as they had three new production cars displayed but more surprisingly not a single concept vehicle. The new production cars included the CLS and S250 CDI models. The new CLS that was unveiled had all the new design styling and elements that Mercedes is moving towards in terms of its design concepts and we will soon see most Mercedes cars adopt the same styling and be applied to the entire range of vehicles from the German automaker. The front end of the CLS has an unmistakable SLS look to it with the chrome grille neatly accentuating the three-pointed star. The car should be available in V6 and V8 petrol engine options and the diesel versions should include a 3.0 liter V6 and 2.1 liter 4 cylinder unit.

The newest offering in the S-class, the S250 CDI was also on show and comes fitted with a more efficient and green 2.1 liter diesel engine and AMG has provided a facelift. The S250 CDI BlueEfficiency is touted as being the most fuel efficient luxury production car by Mercedes and it is claimed to give up to 17 km/l.