Figo vs Grand i10 (Diesel)

Verdict: Figo is better than Grand i10 (Diesel)
Summary: Figo’s best-in-class drivability, spacious interiors, comfortable suspension, excellent road grip and stability, precise steering and excellent handling make it worth sacrificing the marginal disadvantage in after sales service compared to the Grand i10 Era.

Pricing and Features:
Although the Grand i10 Era is slightly cheaper than the Figo EXI, it skimps on some essential features like central locking and rear parcel shelf.

Fuel efficiency:
Thanks to a smaller engine, bigger turbo, taller gearing and lesser weight than the Figo, Grand i10 gives good efficiency results on ARAI’s stationary test bed. But on road, the difference in fuel efficiency comes down to just over 1 kpl, thanks to Figo’s excellent drivability.

The Grand i10 is a little bothersome to drive in traffic compared to the Figo. The Grand i10 suffers from turbo lag up to 1500 rpm. You tend to give excessive throttle input to overcome the turbo lag and just when the turbo starts spinning, you’ve caught up with the car ahead of you and need to brake. But that’s not it, when you slow down, you need to either downshift or again wait out the turbo lag before you get going. This is what negates the Grand i10’s fuel efficiency advantage over the Figo, in the real world. The Figo’s ‘low inertia’ turbo kicks in at just 1200 rpm plus it has an inherently better torque due to its 280 additional CCs. It’s not that the Grand i10 has particularly bad drivability amongst diesel hatchbacks, but the Figo is arguably the best-in-class.

In terms of outright acceleration both of them are weak; overtaking on the highway does not come easily to them. However, in terms of refinement both are excellent, especially considering that they priced at the affordable end of the diesel hatchback segment. Even gearshift quality is remarkable, light and smooth in the Grand i10, short and precise in the Figo.

Space & Comfort:
Both cars have managed to liberate generous amount of space inside their cabins. Grand i10 has great knee room and supportive seats. However its overall width is less, which makes the rear seat good for carrying only 2 passengers. The Figo’s cabin is wider and almost as long, comfortable for 5 occupants. Grand i10 has capacious boot for a hatchback (much bigger than Swift, Ritz, Vista etc.) but the Figo’s boot is positively cavernous.

The Figo’s ride-handling is extraordinary, far better than the Grand i10’s. It is delightfully supple in the way it absorbs bumps and ruts at all speeds and yet corners surprisingly flat, with hardly any body roll at all. The steering is well weighted precise. The Grand i10 though is too softly sprung and has an overtly light steering. It starts wallowing and becomes unstable over bumps as the speeds rise. Cornering is not its cup of tea. It lacks the sheer surefootedness of the Figo when it comes to high speed stability and emergency braking.

After Sales Service:
Hyundai is only second to Maruti when it comes to the vast spread of its service network in India. But after finally cracking the market first with the Figo and now with the EcoSport, Ford is rapidly expanding. Ford have even managed to address its ‘Achilles heel’ issue of high spares costs with the Figo being more or less on par with the Grand i10 in this regard.

The Grand i10 has the nicest interiors amongst equivalent hatchbacks. Hyundai has mastered the perceived quality game. It knows exactly how to push the buttons of the prospective customers with the interplay of colors, textures and flamboyant design. The Figo certainly feels dated compared to the crispy fresh Grand i10, but has a solid, monolithic feel to it, as if it can handle whatever the Indian roads may throw at it, after all it’s a good 65 kg heavier than the Grand i10.

Both the Fiesta gen-V (whose platform the Figo uses) and the i10 (grand i10 hasn’t been tested by NCAP yet) have received a satisfactory crash test rating.
4/5, 4/5