Honda City has been the number one luxury sedan for a very long period of time. It is one of the oldest cars from the garage of the Japanese car maker and is currently in its sixth generation. However, it’s the third generation that saw the company adopting the sedan platform and the rest is history. The City sedan has quite been the undisputed champion for a long time before it was overtaken recently towards the end of 2016 by the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz.
The Maruti Suzuki Baleno, on the other hand, is not a new name in the auto industry, although the current generation of the Baleno hatchback has made it big for the company. Similar to Honda City, the Baleno too had undergone a change in the platform before getting a hatchback shape.
Two different cars, two different segments, yet, they are so much similar to each other. In this contemporary time, both of them are blockbusters in their respective segment. Thus, they call for a comparison, big time. So, if you too are confused, consider having a sneak peak of the two and decide yourself.
The Honda City commands luxury, with every inch of it adding a premium feel. The front headlamps are horizontally stretched, merging into the chrome garnished front grille. The front bumper is made with a lot of cuts and stitches and black cladded fog lamps. The side profile continues to look similar to the edition that was withdrawn in 2013.
The Maruti Suzuki Baleno, on the other hand, has quite been the revival for the company after it continued to persist with the popular Swift design. By the first appearance, one can easily say that the Baleno can be epitomized as a class enhancer. The front grille is uniquely designed, connecting the two eagle eye shaped headlamps. The roofline is backward slanting until it merges with the rear windscreen, which stands at a 60 degree slant. The wheel arches are butcher than the Honda counterpart.
All best in class features are evident inside Honda City. The fabric upholstery feels more than its name. A conventional three spoke steering wheel stands on the analogue meters that roar enthusiasm. There are two horizontal shaped AC vents over the infotainment system screen. The button bits on the instrument cluster feels great. And as expected, the sedan is absolutely spacious with a large 510-litre boot space.
The Maruti Suzuki Baleno, on the other hand, stands tall to be more than its name. Despite being a hatchback, the Baleno feels more spacious than the Swift D’zire, a subcompact hatchback. A similar three spoke steering wheel is placed over a semi digital information cluster, which holds an analogue speedo and tachometer. It gets horizontally placed AC vents surrounding the smartly designed dashboard. The center console looks small but informative. It has a decently big boot of 340-litres.
Power and transmission
When it comes to power, the Honda City is more powerful, which is obvious considering the price difference. The 1.5-litre i-VTEC engine makes a thumping 117 bhp of maximum power at 6,600 revs per minute and a peak torque of 145 Nm at 4,600 Nm. Quite astonishing as it could get, the City sedan is more powerful than the Renault Duster SUV as well. Now that’s something you have got to consider. This powerful engine is mated with a 5-speed manual transmission gearbox.
The Maruti Suzuki Baleno poses with the typical hatchback power figures. The 1.2-litre VVT engine makes the highest power of 83 bhp at 6,000 revolutions per minute and a maximum torque of 115 at 4,000 revolutions per minute, and is coupled with a 5-speed manual transmission gearbox.
Both the cars belong to different segments, but yet, they both very comfortably poise to be range toppers. Honda City, the classy sedan with a loud presence, makes heads turn even now. But yes, Honda City price is Rs. 8.7 lakhs which often tends to shoo away the buyers towards a cheaper option.
The Maruti Suzuki Baleno is one of the most affordable premium hatchback with a host of features. At Rs. 5.5 lakhs, the hatch keeps itself ready for the longer race, denying to die anytime soon.