2015 Ford Figo vs Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Tata Bolt: Diesel Comparison Review

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  • Nov 4, 2015
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While the Ford Figo hatchback has proven to be quite impressive in its own regard, how does it fare against stiff competitors like the Maruti Suzuki Swift and the Tata Bolt?

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Ford Figo vs Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Tata Bolt



Ford has taken a while to bring in its popular hatchback in a new avatar. While the wait sure has been long, Ford has ensured that the car be quite impressive in its own regard. While it has set new benchmarks with some first-in-class features, it will take a lot more to beat the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Swift and the Tata Bolt. Does the new Ford Figo have what it takes to rule the roost in this class of cars? 



Ford Figo, Maruti Suzuki Swift and Tata Bolt static




Ford Figo: rating_4.0_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_3.0_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_3.0_rating

In the crowded hatchback space, the Ford Figo easily manages to stand out thanks to its design. The Aston Martin-inspired chrome grille, the long pulled back headlamps, the leaf shaped taillight and the sharp crease on the boot lid, all make the Figo design pleasing to the eyes. In fact, simply based on design, the Figo is the most premium looking car of the lot. 



Ford Figo Maruti Suzuki Swift and Tata Bolt



Although the Maruti Suzuki Swift with its smooth curvy design language is aesthetically sound, it is more of a nip and tuck job of the older version. And it is mainly due to the fact that the overall silhouette of the Swift remains unchanged that it scores less in terms of design. 



Ford Figo vs Maruti Suzuki Swift vs Tata Bolt static



The Tata Bolt sails in the same boat as the Swift. The resemblance between the Bolt and the Indica Vista robs it of all exclusivity. With projector headlamps, the gunmetal alloy wheels and the blackened out C-pillar, Tata has tried to give it a distinct identity, but it isn't one that will leave a lasting impression. 


Some might argue that the upfront the Figo is a photocopy of the Figo Aspire, but that doesn't steal the freshness away from the overall design, something that is missing from both the other cars. 



Tata Bolt dashboard



Interior and Space: 

Ford Figo: rating_4.0_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_3.0_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_4.0_rating

Being family cars, space and comfort is one of the most important aspects in a hatchback. And in that regard, the Tata Bolt surges ahead of both the other cars. Leg and knee room for passengers at the back is more than sufficient and it has the widest rear bench that can easily accommodate three average sized adults. Moreover, thanks to the large windows the cabin doesn't feel cramped either. The Bolt loses a few points in terms of overall fit and finish though. The piano black finish on the dashboard is extremely prone to scratches and dust. 



Ford Figo hatchback



The Ford Figo shares the title with the Bolt in terms of interior and space. To start with, the overall plastic quality on the dashboard and other panels is better than the Tata offering, and the cabin feels airier too. The seats on the Figo are cushioned for enhanced comfort. Space at the back though isn't as much as the Bolt, especially for passengers at the back. The Figo also manages to gain a an edge thanks to its best-in-class 257 liters of boot space. A special mention must be made for all the cubby holes and bottle holder in the Figo, which add a sense of practicality to its interior. 



Maruti Suzuki Swift dashboard



Space has always been an issue with the Swift and with cars like the Bolt and the Figo to compete the matter seems even bigger. Knee and leg room for the rear passenger is just not enough. In fact seating three adults at the back too will be quite a squeeze. Moreover thanks to the shadow black interior, the cabin doesn't seems as airy and welcoming as the other two cars in question. At 205 litres the Swift even has the smallest boot among the three. What the Swift loses in terms of space, it makes up in quality. The Maruti Suzuki offering’s interior is a better than both the other cars by quite a margin. 



Figo vs Swift vs Bolt comparison



Features and Equipment: 

Ford Figo: rating_4.0_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_4.0_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_4.0_rating

All three cars are more or less at par when it comes to features and equipment. They come with the segment standard Bluetooth, AUX, USB connectivity, central locking, keyless entry et al. However, each of the three cars have a few features that aren't seen on the others. The Figo, for instance, has the MyKey feature and comes with six airbags in the top-end trim. The Swift on the other hand gets keyless entry, button start and parking sensors. And lastly, the Bolt is the only car to sport projector type headlights and a touchscreen infotainment system with navigation. 



Ford Figo hatchback diesel engine



Engine and Performance: 

Ford Figo: rating_4.0_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_3.5_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_3.0_rating

Of these three cars, two of them get the same engine, the Maruti Suzuki Swift and the Tata Bolt. They come with the Fiat sourced 1.3-litre diesel mill making 75PS of peak power at 4,000rpm. The torque rating too remains the same at 190Nm however the Swift makes it at 2,000rpm and the Bolt at 1,750rpm. Despite the identical numbers, the Swift feels a lot better tuned and smoother than the Bolt. The Swift’s engine is vibe-free with NVH level well under control even at higher revs. One of the biggest drawbacks of the Tata offering is its power delivery. Turbo lag is evident and once past the 4,000rpm mark the car feels dud right up till the red line. Simply put, if you want to extract the most out of the car keep it between 2,000-4,000rpm.



Maruti Suzuki Swift diesel engine



At 1,060 the Swift is also a lighter than the Bolt which tips the scale at 1,132kg. Aside from, the smoother engine, the gearbox too makes the Swift surge ahead in this department. Both engines come mated to a 5-speed manual transmission but shift on the Swift are a lot more precise and easy. 



Tata Bolt Diesel engine



In terms of engine and performance, the Figo is a clear winner here. To start with it sports a 1.5-litre diesel mill that makes 100PS and 215Nm. These figures are considerably higher than the rivals in discussion and it shows while driving too. The Figo feels a lot more energetic and eager than the Swift as well as the Bolt. Power comes lower into the rev range which even makes the car quick to get off the line. We wish the 5-speed gearbox was a bit more effortless though. 



Tata Bolt in action


Ride and Ease of Driving: 

Ford Figo: rating_3.5_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_3.0_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_4.0_rating

Talking about comfort inside the cabin, the Bolt leads the way from the front. The suspension setup is just right to flatten out all sorts of potholes without a hint to the passengers inside. Visibility all round is fantastic, but parking would have been a lot easier had there been sensors at the back. 



Ford Figo in action


The Figo too has a fairly comfortable ride quality. The suspension setup is slightly stiffer than the Bolt which means the larger bumps are not filtered as efficiently. Surprisingly though, at the back the Figo’s ride feels marginally more plush over the Bolt. Of the three cars, the Figo stands last in regards to all round visibility. The A-pillar is too big and like the Bolt, the Figo doesn't get parking sensors either. 



Maruti Suzuki Swift in action



The Swift’s stiff suspension means the passengers at the back are in for a roller coaster ride. On broken and bumpy roads, the Maruti Suzuki doesn't feel as comfortable as the other two in discussion. However, in terms of visibility and driving position the Maruti Suzuki offering scores better than the others.




Maruti Swift in action



Handling and Braking:

Ford Figo: rating_3.5_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_4.5_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_2.5_rating

While the Swift’s suspension setup steals it of impressive ride quality, that same attribute comes in handy when tackling a series of twisties. Sharp bends or switch backs, the Swift takes them on with utmost confidence. A lot of this character also come thanks to a precise steering wheel that is a lot more responsive than the other two. Braking is on par with the Figo. 



New Figo Hatchback in action



The Figo has a mild setup that does allow it to be fairly comfortable facing corners however the steering lacks enough feedback and it comes to fore especially in comparison to the Swift. Like we mentioned earlier, the Bolt is softly setup in relation to the others evading it of good handling dynamics. To make matters worse, the steering feel is a bit vague and can take getting used to. 



Ford Figo rear



Price and Fuel Efficiency:

Ford Figo: rating_4.5_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_4.0_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_3.5_rating

In the segment so far, the Swift ruled the roost in terms of efficiency returning an ARAI claimed 25.2kmpl. But with the launch of the Figo, that title has been stolen thanks to its 25.83kmpl figure. The Bolt returns a claimed figure of 22.95kmpl. 


Now for the price. Ford has hit the nail right on the head by pricing the Figo starting Rs 4.30 lakh while the top-end diesel costing Rs 7.41 lakh. The Maruti Suzuki Swift and the Bolt on the other hand start at Rs 4.65 lakh and Rs 4.45 lakh respectively. The top-end variants of both these cars have been priced at Rs 7.29 lakh and Rs 7 lakh respectively. All prices ex-showroom Delhi. 



Figo vs Swift vs Bolt comparo




Ford Figo: rating_4.0_rating

Maruti Suzuki Swift: rating_3.5_rating

Tata Bolt: rating_3.0_rating

It's been one close match, this comparison. While the Figo has the looks, the Bolt has the space and the Swift has handling. While The Tata has the price going for it, Ford has the efficiency and the Maruti Suzuki offering has service network. Each of the three cars tops the charts in one of the aforementioned aspects. But of them all, it is the Ford Figo that emerges at the top being the jack of all trades. It looks good, has the most energetic engine, good features and a good ride-handling balance. The Ford Figo for us then is the new king of the segment. 


Recommended Variant : Figo 1.5 TDCi Titanium