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Honda Amaze vs Toyota Etios vs Chevrolet Sail Diesel Comparison Review


We pip the Honda Amaze, our favourite diesel compact sedan versus the updated Toyota Etios and Chevrolet Sail to see if it can still retain its crown.

 

 

Amaze vs Etios vs Sail diesel comparison review 1

 

 

The Honda Amaze has so far been unbeatable as a package when it comes to the entry-level diesel sedan segment. Beating the likes of the Hyundai Xcent and the Maruti Suzuki Dzire is no small feat, but how will it compare against the likes of the newly refreshed Toyota Etios and the Chevrolet Sail? Although one might argue that the former caters to a very different audience as compared to the offerings from Toyota and Chevrolet, we beg to differ. Although larger cars, the two are aimed right at the heart of the typical Indian customer who yearns to upgrade his trusty hatchback to the all-important status symbol: the saloon. So how do they compare? Read on to find out...

 

 


Exterior styling

 

Amaze vs Etios vs Sail diesel comparison review 5

 

 

In terms of exterior styling, the three cars here are as different as chalk and cheese. While the Amaze is borderline cute, the Toyota Etios and Chevrolet Sail are rather plain jane. The Chevrolet is the most boring of the lot with its split grille and large bowtie taking up most of its front fascia. The Etios though, with its slightly refreshed front, looks the classiest of the lot and is the only one that can realistically hold a candle to the Honda Amaze.

 

 

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In terms of overall proportions too, the Toyota Etios pips the Amaze. That said, the Etios isn’t a sub-4 meter sedan, thereby giving it the advantage of both larger dimensions and a better overall street presence. Around the back though, both the Chevrolet and Toyota fail miserably when compared to the Honda Amaze. With its crisp tail lamps and large chrome festooned boot, the Amaze is clearly the overall winner here.

 

Honda Amaze: 4/5

Toyota Etios: 3.5/5

Chevrolet Sail: 3/5

 

 

 

 

 

Honda Amaze interior

 

 

Interior & space

 

The three cars compared here are very well matched when it comes to interior design. While the Toyota Etios employs a centre mounted speedometer console, the Honda Amaze and the Chevrolet Sail employ a traditional offset mounted centre speedometer binnacle. Let us start with the Honda’s quirky dashboard design. With a large speedometer and all other controls very well placed in terms of ergonomics, it is certainly the most interesting one of the lot. The Sail is the most conventional of the lot with classy rectangular AC vents and a brushed silver centre console. The Toyota does feel slightly out of place here but isn’t exactly bland either. On the whole though, another clear win for the Amaze.

 

 

Toyota Etios Sedan interior

 

 

Interior space though is a whole different ballgame. As we mentioned earlier, the Toyota Etios and the Chevrolet Sail are not sub-4 meter sedans thereby giving them a huge space advantage. Although Honda’s engineers have done an absolutely fantastic job with the way the Amaze has been packaged to get the most out of in terms of interior space, the Toyota Etios is by far the winner here. Rear leg room is also one of the most important reasons why the Toyota Etios is the preferred private taxi of choice for most fleet operators in the country. That said, the Toyota’s seats could certainly do with slightly more overall support. The Chevrolet too is good on rear leg space but it too suffers from slightly underwhelming support from its seats.

 

Honda Amaze: 3.5/5

Toyota Etios: 3.5/5

Chevrolet Sail: 3/5

 

 

 

Chevrolet sail interior
 

 

Features & Equipment

 

Just as with interior design and space, the Amaze, Sail and Etios are extremely well matched when it comes to features and equipment. All three cars come with Bluetooth telephony and audio streaming and USB/AUX equipped double din infotainment systems. All three also get standard features like electronically controlled exterior mirrors. That said, the Honda Amaze, Toyota Etios and the Chevrolet Sail lack electronic climate control and come equipped with standard conventional knobs instead. The Sail also lacks steering mounted audio control, a feature that the Amaze and Etios come equipped with.

 

Honda Amaze: 3/5

Toyota Etios: 3/5

Chevrolet Sail: 3/5

 


 

 

 

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Engines & performance

 

The 1.5-litre D-4D motor in the Toyota Etios delivers its 90PS of power in a smooth, effortless fashion which makes it ideal for the city while employing the 170Nm of torque which comes in early between 1800-2400rpm. The Chevrolet Sail comes with the tried and tested 1.3-litre, 4-cylinder, turbo diesel mill, which with 78PS might lack an overall sense of performance but does feel surprisingly strong in the mid-end. The low-end torque on the Sail isn’t too bad either making it easy to potter around town with it. You also get a well sorted gearbox and clutch package with excellent throws and overall feel.

 

 

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Although both the Sail and Etios come with great engine packages, it is the 1.5-litre i-Dtec engine in the Amaze that still manages to excite us. The four cylinder, all aluminium engine makes 100PS of max power which helps it accelerate to 100kmph from a standstill in under 13 seconds. In terms of driving, the Amaze has the sharpest, best judged throttle response and the least amount of turbo lag. All three cars come mated to a 5-speed gearbox with quite acceptable levels of shift quality. The Amaze and Sail do feel slightly notchy though as compared to the smoother Toyota gearbox.

 

Honda Amaze: 4/5

Toyota Etios: 3.5/5

Chevrolet Sail: 3/5

 

 

 

Honda Amaze handling

 

 

Handling & braking

 

Although one cannot expect either of these cars to by trackday weapons, each have their positives and negatives. Here too, the Amaze is the most edgy and well behaved car among the trio when thrown hard into a corner. That said, the Etios isn’t far behind, particularly due to its larger tyres offering a wider contact patch. Strangely, the Sail too, although slightly softer than the other two, did not disappoint when it came overall handling characteristics. Coming back to the Amaze, as we have mentioned in one of our earlier comparison tests, the Honda does feel severely under-tyred, a characteristic trait that seems to plague most Honda products recently.

 

 

Toyota Etios cornering shot

 

 

All three cars come with ABS as standard on their top of the line variants and offer enough braking power to get out of sticky situations. That said, the Etios does feel more planted overall and more comfortable than the other two at higher speeds and under general city driving conditions.

 

Honda Amaze: 4/5

Toyota Etios: 4/5

Chevrolet Sail: 3/5

 


 

 

  

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Price and Fuel efficiency

 

Lets start with the Chevrolet Sail. Priced priced at Rs 5.19 lakh for the base petrol variant, going to Rs 7.65 lakh for our range-topping LT ABS diesel test car ex-showroom, Delhi) puts it slap bang in the middle of the compact saloon battle. The Toyota Etios, ranging from Rs 5.74-8.17 lakh, the Toyota might very well be the most expensive of the lot but also offers a lot more space and brand value for the price. The Honda Amaze, a true compact saloon on the other hand is the cheapest car here, priced between Rs 5.00-7.55 lakh making it the best value for money.

 

 

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In terms of fuel efficiency too, the diesel Sail we drove returns 22.1kmpl while the Etios offers 23.59kmpl and the Amaze, a range topping 25.8kmpl according to ARAI results. That said, although realistically none of these cars will showcase these figures in everyday driving situations, the Amaze will certainly be the most fuel efficient of the lot due to its lower overall weight and compact dimensions.

 

Honda Amaze: 4/5

Toyota Etios: 3.5/5

Chevrolet Sail: 3/5

 

 

 

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Verdict

 

As we mentioned recently in our detailed Chevrolet Sail review, this entry level sedan is a great car for someone who is looking at something different from the herd. That said, it is far from the best car in its class. Choosing between the Etios and the Amaze isn’t as easy as it appears either. While the Etios offers much more space, it does compromise on interior design and of course, is more expensive. The Amaze on the other hand, is stylish both on the exterior and interior front, comes with a great engine that is both powerful and fuel efficient and offers great interior space.

 

 

Honda Amaze

 

 

The Honda Amaze diesel then, still retains the ZigWheels crown as the best entry level sedan you can buy. That said, with cars like the new Ford Figo sedan just around the corner, the versatile Honda Amaze might find itself in another battle royale very soon.


Honda Amaze: 4/5

Toyota Etios: 3.5/5

Chevrolet Sail: 3/5

 

 


Recommended Variant : Amaze VX i DTEC