2012: The year of Compact Sedans

It has been a month and a half since the beginning of the new year and we already had a big release in the form of the all new Swift dZire and that’s not all, the Indian Automotive Industry is ready with a whole new line up of cars to be launched later this year.

It is to be mentioned that 2012 is going to be the year “Compact Sedans”). Even the new dZire is a CS. Cars less than 4 metres in length are known as Compact Sedans(CS). The Indian Govt. gives a 12% relief in excise duty for cars that are less than 4 metres in length and have an engine capacity less than 1.2(for petrol) and 1.5(for diesel) in order to promote small & fuel efficient cars. The excise duty on other cars is 22% where as it is 10% fot these CS’s. It is to be remembered that the Indigo CS was the first compact sedan to be launched in India followed now by the dZire. The 12% difference is a lot in the huge auto industry which is making all the other manufacturers turn towards the compact sedans.

Here’s a list of the compact sedans worth watching for in 2012:

1) New Maruti Swift Dzire (recently launched):

Maruti launched the New Swift dZire based on its new swift platform. But it is a compact sedan which means it costs nearly 30k less than the previous generation dZire, it must be the only car which costs less than its predecessor. The original dZire made big numbers despite its odd looking boot as it was fun to drive, fuel efficient, and value for money just like the Swift. So, with the new dZire you can definitely expect all the above if not better along with a 30k price cut, mouth watering deal ehh? But what you lose? The odd ball design gets even more odd or rather ugly, the integration of the boot looks too forced. Whatever, apart from the design of the boot, this is an excellent deal and should give its competitors a run for their money.

2) Tata Manza CS:

The original Manza is incredibly Value for money you pay. Just imagine it getting even more cheaper with the excise benefit. This would definitely, without any doubt become the cheapest luxury car in India or may be even the world. The pleasure of the back seat( the so called “sofa on wheels”) is just incredible. And with the cost cutting, this sure is a deal breaker and we can expect most of the C segment sedan owners to switch over to the Manza CS. The Manza is quite spacious and also has a big boot. I don’t think the CS inspite of being less than 4 metres should have mediocre boot space like the dzire. This is one car that can compete with the dzire head-on. Also it would have the same 1.3 litre Fiat derived MultiJetDiesel engine.

3) Mahindra Verito CS: 

The Verito always catered to the taxi wala’s due to its pricing and with the new CS, I don’t think it’s going to change much. It would attract even mroe buyers from the taxi segment. Normal people may continue to avoid this due to the taxi branding. But it should be mentioned that it is way  better as an overall package than both the Manza CS and the new dZire. Mahindra & Mahindra should take care that this shouldn’t happen with the new Verito CS but I don’t think they would take much care about that.                                                                                                                             l

4)Ambassador CS

Courtesy : bharatautos.com & autocar India

Don’t rub your eyes. You see it right and this isn’t any joke. Hindustan Motors is also taking advantage of this cut in excise duty and bring out its flag ship model in a CS avatar. Have to look eagerly for its launch.                                                                                                                                                           .                                                                                                                                                            .                                                                                                                                                               .                                                                                                                                                                 .

I have included the below two cars into the list although they are not sedans because they are compact, eligible for the cut in excise duty and also can compete against the sedans.

5) Mahindra Xylo mini:

Mahindra & Mahindra sure seems to be on a roll with the success of its new car, the XUV500. The xylo mini is expected to sport a 1.5L diesel engine and be priced around 5 lacs. At that price range, it sure should give the hatchbacks, a run for their money, leave alone the sedans. Mahindra sure had a game changer in the form of XUV500, lets see how this one fares.




6) Ford Ecosport:

A compact SUV from Ford for the first time. Many people give up their hopes to buy an SUV just because their budget does not permit them. Also, it would find takers in people looking for premium hatchbacks and entry level sedans as it is expected to be priced below 8 lacs. People like me who love SUV’s should be the first one’s in the line to book this once it is released.




All in all, 2012 looks quite promising with compact cars all over. The dZire has already made its entry, the Verito CS will make its entry very soon followed by the others. Hope this takes competitiveness to the next level and the customers gets a range of vehicles to choose from based upon his needs.


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