Maruti Suzuki Ignis Overview
Maruti Suzuki had one of the hottest exhibits at the 2016 Auto Expo, where they showcased the Ignis. The off-beat styling with a crossover-esque design grabbed a lot of eye balls. After waiting for a year, the Ignis has been finally launched with a range of engine and transmission options along with highly customisable trims. The Indo-Japanese carmaker is targeting the millennial youth audience with the Ignis and retailing it via their premium NEXA dealerships across the country. What’s the hype all about? We find out in our test drive in Chennai.. Maruti Suzuki Ignis On road price starts from 4,53,166/-. Check for price details of Ignis in CarzPrice.
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Exteriors
In terms of design the Ignis isn’t playing safe. What’s sure to catch every millennial’s eye is how it looks from the front. The wide single frame grille that houses the headlamp units grabs attention right away. The U-shaped DRLs around the headlamps give a sense of modernity and richness to the otherwise simple front grille, and the round chrome housing for fog lamps cover up what looks like an old-fashioned front bumper.
The Ignis also appears to be born out of an SUV-hatchback wedlock, after all the lines leading to up to the bonnet aren’t flowing lines, instead fairly geometric. The high bonnet line and the flat hood add some more SUV-flavour to the Ignis. A small rubber strip on the bonnet reminds us of Suzuki’s SUV heritage as this detail harks back to the original Vitara.
Walk around, and the Ignis masks its short 3700mm length effortlessly. It’s compact, and should therefore squeeze into tight parking spots easily. When viewed from the side the Ignis’ design looks well balanced and doesn’t end in an abruptly chopped rear end. Large 15-inch wheels fill the wheel wells beautifully.
Thankfully, Maruti Suzuki hasn’t overdone the plastic cladding to make the Ignis look butch. However, the unusually designed rear quarter gives an impression of this being a notchback.
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Interiors
The Ignis diesel automatic also loses some of the comfort and convenience features compared to its Alpha trimmed manual counter part. The touchscreen multimedia system with Android Auto gives way to a regular Bluetooth audio system. It’s still a stick-on design that sits centrally on the dashboard between the air vents. But, compared to the tab like screen, this one looks utilitarian instead of cool. There’s also no height adjustment for the driver’s seat and a manual aircon unit replaces the digital climate control system.
What remains from the Alpha trim is the multifunctional steering wheel, the detailed driver information system as part of the instrumentation and keyless entry and start. It also gets plenty of storage spaces in and around the central tunnel and in the door pockets, and the glovebox is spacious too. The Ignis diesel automatic continues to get parking aid in the form of rear parking sensors but with no touchscreen inside, reversing camera has been given the boot as well.
In terms of space and seating comfort, things remain the same. So, there’s enough head and knee room to seat four passengers, and the seats themselves are cushy but supportive. The boot space at 260 litres remains handy, especially with split and folding rear seats, even though the high loading lip height can be a problem for some.
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Performance
There’s a telling difference between the on-road performance of the petrol and diesel versions. The petrol is quiet, refined and linear in its power delivery. The diesel in comparison is noisy and a bit unruly. There’s also that turbo lag this 1.3-litre Fiat designed diesel engine is infamous for. The lag is less obvious in the automatic version compared to the diesel manual, but it is still there. The diesel however makes for easier overtakes once the turbo is spooled up. And it is clearly the more fuel efficient of the two.
In AMT or AGS or automatic guise, the diesel Ignis makes for a relaxed commuter till the time you don’t ask much of the throttle pedal. There’s some shift shock, yes, but it isn’t uncomfortable. That is till you start getting hard on the gas. Because once you do, the gearbox likes to tie itself in knots. It’s not sure what gear to pick, especially when downshifting. It invariably picks a gear too low causing excessive head bobbing. The ‘box struggles to make smooth transitions between shifts as well.
The petrol comes with an AMT ‘box too. And it is fantastic in comparison to the diesel setup. The shifts are smooth, the throttle response is crisper, and the power delivery is alert and linear from the word go. Add to it the quiet nature of the petrol engine and the sporty note it takes on as the revs rise, and you have a car that’s certainly more in line with an enthusiast’s want.
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Driving
The suspension in the Ignis is set up to offer a firm ride. This causes you to feel bumps and potholes at low speeds; however, ride quality does improve as speeds rise. That said, driving over sharp potholes causes the suspension to protest with a loud thud which is quite disconcerting.
After driving over a fairly bad stretch of tarmac, I was left wondering why Maruti chose such a firm set-up and the answer to that was revealed as soon as I encountered a set of corners. The Ignis is quite enjoyable around a bend; however, there is a hint of body roll that you need to get past. The front end has ample of grip to pull the car into a corner and there’s only a hint of understeer when you are at the limit.
Turn in is quick and precise for the car’s dimensions and mid corner bumps do not unsettle the car. The manual mode also makes it involving to drive with the rallycar-like shift pattern further enhancing the experience.
What robs the Ignis petrol AMT of earning the tag of a driver’s car though is the disconnected steering. While it’s light and easy in the city, it does not weigh up as much as you’d want with increase in speed. Better feedback in corners would have certainly upped the fun quotient that this car offers otherwise
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Safety
It is one aspect where Maruti has truly excelled. Maruti Ignis specifications include dual front airbags, seatbelts with pre-tensioner and force limiter (PTFL), and Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) with Electronic Brake-force Distribution (EBD) as standard fitments. In addition, ISOFIX Anchorage – a child seat restraint system – is also offered as a standard feature with the entire Ignis variant lineup.
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Price
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Ex-Showroom Price in Pune ranges from 4,53,166/- (Ignis 1.2 Sigma MT) to 7,51,797/- (Ignis 1.3 Alpha MT). Get best offers for Maruti Suzuki Ignis from Maruti Suzuki Dealers in India
Maruti Suzuki Ignis Verdict
Yes, the Ignis is a dressed up hatch, and it has shortcomings. Its styling is head-turning but polarising, and it looks a bit awkward when viewed from the rear. Its interiors, although funky, could do with a bit more finesse. However, the Ignis is very well equipped and spacious. The way it rides and drives makes it feel sophisticated and friendly to use too. The option of well-engineered automatic transmissions widens the Ignis’ repertoire further. The Ignis may seem pricey, but bear in mind it packs ABS, EBD, airbags and crash safety measures