Top 10 petrol cars for Rs 5 lakh
If you are an up and coming Indian with a good stable job, there’s very high possibility of a car purchase around the Rs 5 lakh mark. Things like practicality, efficiency, features, space and joy of driving are prime on your mind but you’d notice that if you weigh a car with one criterion heavily, it falls short in another. And the number of options available in the market are so varied that there is a very good chance you are pulling your hair by the time you sign the dotted line. So we’ve done some thorough research on the best cars right to the variant in our top ten list for cars priced between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 5.99 lakh, ex-showroom Delhi. Read this to save your trip to the trichologist.
Since there are so many alternatives in this price bracket, we’ve split this list by fuel type. Next week, we will bring out the top diesel cars for Rs 5 lakh so stay tuned.
If you have read our top 5 cars for Rs 10 lakh and Rs 15 lakh, you will know the parameters by now. We’ve added one more parameter to this list – Interior Space and Boot space as this is essential in this price bracket. Here are the parameters again –
All cars were rated on a scale on 1-5 with 1 being poor and 5 being outstanding.
Engine and Gearbox:
We considered everything from driveability to refinement to NVH before deciding on the rating for the engine, while for the gearbox, things like shift quality and ease and progression of clutch actuation was looked into.
Ride and Handling:
In a market like India, wherein good roads are hard to come by, ride quality – at both low speed and high – is extremely important. But, just a plush ride isn’t enough; the ride shouldn’t be noisy or coupled with vibrations either. As for handling, we considered both ease of driving in the city and the car’s stability in a straight line, under braking, and around a corner.
The more the features, the better. Well, for most part. We also looked into the ease of using these features and not all features were given equal weightages. Features that are more useful, naturally, got a higher rating.
Easily the most important buying criteria, we simply took ARAI quoted fuel economy figures to arrive at a score. The higher the kmpl figure, the higher the score.
Interior and Boot Space:
Cars in the Rs 5 lakh range aren’t big on space, both on the inside and in the boot. But you want to carry five adults and two large bags on some days during your ownership so where would they go? Hence it makes for an important criterion in this price bracket. Less scores less, more scores more.
Fun to Drive:
Fun to drive is the most subjective parameter here. But, also a crucial one. And for a car to be fun to drive everything from the engine and gearbox performance, to the steering feel and response, to the tyre grip and the overall handling prowess of the car were rated on. The cars that managed to put bigger smiles on our faces, scored higher.
Rank 1: Hyundai Xcent 1.2 MT S (O)
The Xcent has emerged as the best car to put your money on. Hyundai has a knack for making good all-rounders and when we drove the Grand i10, we knew its Sedan version is going to be a good car. But car for price, it has turned out to be the best car in our list, which we didn’t fathom at the time. The Xcent is the best Hyundai we have driven in the budget segment, and in many ways, it’s more fun to drive than the Verna, its elder sibling. The Kappa engine under its hood is quite and eager unit and gives the impression of a lot more power on tap than it actually has. In S with the optional safety package, it is feature rich and has the biggest boot in this top 10 list at 407 litres. Where the Xcent aces is in the fuel efficiency department. It’s the most economical with an ARAI certified figure of 19.1kmpl and that takes it first across the finish line.