Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 vs Hyundai Eon: Comparison
Hyundai usurped Maruti Suzuki's bread and butter car maker status with the brilliant Eon, but Maruti has just struck back with its all new Alto 800. Let the battle begin...
The magical 3-cylinder formula!
The original 800 started the 3-cylinder saga offering the right blend of city performance and amazing efficiency. And that saga continues till date, although the technology has grown by leaps and bounds as these two demonstrate.
Powering the Eon is an 814cc three-cylinder petrol engine that makes 56PS @5,500rpm and a decent torque of 74.56Nm @ 4,000rpm. Mated to a five-speed gearbox, the Eon is surprisingly agile and is well suited for city driving and those occasional highway jaunts. While the traditional 3 pot vibes are there, most of which are felt through the gear lever, it smoothens out once you’re on the move.
For the Alto, the product planners have stayed faithful with the same F8D engine as in the outgoing Alto but this has now been subjected to a major revision. The changes have resulted in the engine delivering big on torque and this is exactly what you crave for in not just this class of car but also the environs which it will be operating in. Torque has been bumped up by a massive 11 per cent, from 62Nm at 3000rpm in the previous Alto to 69Nm at 3500rpm, while max power developed by the revised motor is 49PS at 6000rpm. Compared to the Eon, refinement is simply outstanding. Not a hint of vibration which usually plague 3-pot motors. Maruti Suzuki have simply outdone themselves here.
While the Alto might seem down on power compared to the Eon, it’s also about 20 kg lighter and makes its maximum torque earlier than the Hyundai. As a result, not only does the Alto pip the Eon to a 100 km/h by 2 seconds but is also significantly quicker in the roll on times. In gear acceleration in 4th gear took 18.3 seconds in the alto, while the Eon took all of 26. Performance with the aircon on is also much better in the Alto.
But where the Alto really decimates the Eon is in the ride quality. Even though the Jap rides on 12 inch Apollo’s compared to the 13 inch tyres on the Korean, the Alto possesses a ride quality which could test even bigger hatchbacks. The damping is just right for the conditions our country offers and the Alto simply pummels everything in its path. The Eon on the other hand does not like irregularities and bumps and potholes are dealt with a fair amount of bobbing and crashing. Rounded bumps pose no problem for the Eon but anything other than that upsets the little car quite a bit. On the mechanical front, the Alto is simply superior with better refinement, performance and ride and handling.
The ‘Kitna deti hai?’ answer!
Again one of the major deciding factors when it comes to these cars is the mileage. Since these cars will see a majority of their lives traversing through the hustle and bustle of the city, it is in this environment where the figures count. The Eon managed 11 kmpl around town while the Alto did a slightly better 12.2 kmpl. With a 32 litre fuel tank, the Eon can keep trundling for 352 km before you will have to refuel while the 35 litre tank of the Alto will go slightly further at 427 km before you run dry. While the difference may not be much, the Alto is definitely more fuel efficient in the city.
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