City vs Verna vs Vento vs Rapid (Diesel)

Verdict: Volkswagen Vento = Skoda Rapid > Honda City > Hyundai Verna (Diesel)
Published by: Autocar
Summary: This time around City has to face the toughest competition it ever has from Global Automotive Powerhouses and it shows. Fundamentally (engine-gearbox, chassis-suspension), it comes short of Volkswagen Group's Vento & Rapid twins. Firstly the engine, is not at the usual pinnacle of efficiency that Hondas are expected to be. Inspite of being 100 cc smaller, having a lower rev limit, having a 6th gear, powering a 100 kg lighter car and running on 10 mm narrower tyres it is still just 1 kpl more fuel efficient than the Germans. It is also less refined, slower and weaker in the mid-range. Verna's powertrain is the worst. It has too much turbo lag making it a chore to drive in the city and neither is the mid-range as strong as the Germans in spite of its much bragged about 20 bhp advantage. However, it is the quietest and marginally also the quickest of the four cars.
Dynamically also the Vento and Rapid are far ahead of City and Verna. They have better grip around corners, good steering feel, excellent high speed stability and the ride quality gets better with speed. City has good high speed stability as well as a pliant ride, but it lacks adequate steering feel. Verna is too softly sprung and the steering is also the least communicative. It crashes audibly through bigger potholes and does not inspire confidence around the corners or on the highway.
City has entices with its futuristic interiors, class-leading space & comfort but the other three, though more conventional aren't far behind. Honda and Hyundai do hold a better track record for after sales service and reliability though.
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