Volkswagen launched its all new contestant, the Ameo in June 2016 primarily for the Indian market. The car is a sub 4-metre sedan based on the Volkswagen Polo hatchback. The vehicle has a dimension of 3995mmX1682mmX1483mm and runs on a MPI three cylinder engine with a capacity of 1198cc. Ameo gives a maximum output of 74bhp @ 5400 rpm and a maximum torque of 110Nm @3750 rpm. The engine is mated to a 5 gear manual gearbox.
When you gaze at the Ameo, you cannot ignore its striking resemblance to the Volkswagen Polo. The only change visible is in the roofline that is slightly lower extenuating its sedan shape. The vehicle offers perfect symmetry and proportionate design aesthetic. It is stylish, suave, refined and extends a tough competition to its rivals namely Maruti Suzuki Dzire, Honda Amaze and Hyundai Xcent.
Standing afar and looking at the four cars, they seem to offer similar dimensions as they come under the sub-four-meter segment. However, the Ameo leads the pack by offering the largest wheelbase of 2470mm improving its interior space. All four cars are powered by a similar 1.2- liter petrol motor but the Maruti Dzire is the most frugal engine providing a fuel efficiency of 20.85kmpl, closely followed by Hyundai Xcent at 19.01kmpl. Honda Amaze is the least practical of the lot with a mileage of 17.8kmpl with the Ameo just above it at 17.83kmpl. Sadly, Ameo is the only vehicle in the lot that does not come with an automatic transmission whereas the Dzire, Amaze and Xcent come with a 4-speed automatic, CVT automatic and a 4-speed automatic option respectively. In terms of generating power, all cars are somewhat alike with the Ameo churning out 74hp@5400rpm, Dzire extending a decent 84.3hp@ 6000rpm, Amaze giving 88hp@ 6000rpm and Xcent delivering 83hp @ 6000rpm.
Volkswagen has gone all out in making the Ameo a feature rich car. It is probably the best in its segment. Apart standard features like automatic climate control, electronic day-night rear-view mirror, reversing camera and rear AC vents which are not new in this segment, the car sports first in segment additions like automatic wipers, one-touch anti-pinch windows on all doors, single-folding rear seat backrest, power windows with one-touch operation, opening and closing of windows with key remote and cruise control. The touchscreen infotainment system comes with several connectivity options like Bluetooth, USB, SD card reader and Mirror-Link. You can trust the car for keeping you safe as it comes with dual front airbags, Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) standard across variants, Electronic Stability Programe (ESP) and hill hold to detect and reduce loss of traction.
Ameo provides excellent value for money. Prices starting at just Rs. 5.24 lakh for the base variant and Rs. 7.06 lakh for top notch (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi) it makes for an astounding package. Competition is close though, priced at Rs. 5.32 lakh to Rs. 6.98 lakh for Maruti Dzire, Rs. 5.35 lakh to 7.25 lakh for Honda Amaze and Rs. 5.36 lakh and 7.13 lakhs for Hyundai Xcent.
At such a price point Ameo, with a bunch of 1st segment features looks like an appealing package.