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Volkswagen Ameo Facelift First Drive Review

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Volkswagen Ameo Overview

Volkswagen Ameo is Volkswagen’s first attempt to enter into the compact sedan segment. The Volkswagen Ameo price in India starts at Rs. 5.24 lakh and goes upto Rs. 7.05 lakh for its top-end variant – Highline. The looks up front are quite similar to the other VW cars. Even when you step inside, the dashboard will remind you of Polo. In terms of comfort, the front seats are as usual perfect even for long drives.

Starting from cruise control to automatic rain-sensing wipers, Volkswagen Ameo 2016 brings with it some features that are introduced for the first time in this segment. Power windows with one touch operation, iPod connectivity, Voice Command and single-fold rear seat backrest are other eye-catching features of the new Volkswagen Ameo. ABS as well as dual-front airbags are a standard across all variants making the Volkwagen Ameo 2016 quite a sensation in its segment.

Volkswagen Ameo Look

It is hard to differentiate between the Polo and the Ameo, especially if you’re looking at the front profile. Although, its sub-4m dimensions allows it to qualify for fewer taxes, makes the car look disproportionate from certain angles. The same applies to the entire segment the Ameo belongs to.

As mentioned above, the front is a carbon copy of the Polo hatchback and there’s nothing you have not seen before. To begin with, it features dual-barrel halogen headlamps and multi-slat grille. The re-styled front bumper which was offered with the Polo facelift has been lifted and now is also featured in the Ameo. The bumper comes with a chrome strip which runs along its length and the fog lamps come with static cornering lights.

Like the front fascia, the side profile is also similar to the Polo, up until the C-pillar. Things start to differ after the C-pillar as the company has incorporated a boot. Furthermore, the production-spec Ameo features 15-inch alloy wheels, which are borrowed from the Polo — unlike the 16-inchers which were shown at the time of its debut. To know more information on Volkswagen Ameo visit Scriptcafe

Compact sedans do have a stubby boot and this in-turn makes them look disproportionately from certain angles. There are good and bad examples but no one has certainly perfected the art of incorporating a boot in restricted dimensions. The Ameo is no exception either! On the brighter side, you do get an integrated spoiler and faux-LED graphics in the taillamps much like the Polo and the Vento.

Volkswagen Ameo Comfort

Compact sedans rarely impress when it comes to interior quality and feel good factor. The Ameo, however, is different. For starters it gets the same interior as the Polo and the Vento which means everything works in a rather precise manner. It’s all very Germanic.

For the price the Ameo can be deemed top-notch, with well-integrated displays and high-quality materials throughout the cabin. Next to the Hyundai Xcent or the Ford Aspire, the Ameo’s cabin does look a bit dull, but when it comes to quality and fit and finish of plastics, the VW is hard to match. The black and beige dual-tone upholstery, beautifully made steering wheel and the rotary switches on the dash, which are solid in feel and operation, all help give the Ameo a genuinely premium feel. Those supremely clear dials are a nice touch too as is the large front armrest.

Sitting high up in the wide and comfortable front seats, visibility outside is good thanks to the thin A-pillar. The front seat themselves are perfectly contoured and offer adequate back and thigh support. As for the rear, things aren’t as impressive since the rear bench is taken straight off the Polo – one of the least spacious hatchbacks around. Couple that with a wheelbase that is unchanged and what follows is a car with the least amount of knee room in its segment. The 330-litre boot is reasonably spacious for day-to-day use but it cannot beat the Honda Amaze (400-litre) or the Hyundai Xcent (407-litre) for capacity.

The Ameo though strikes back big time on equipment. Available in three trim levels, the base Ameo Trendline covers pretty much all the basics, featuring power windows, central locking, tilt and telescopic adjustment for the steering wheel, air-conditioning and turn indicators on wing mirrors. The top-spec Ameo Highline, on the other hand, is loaded to the brim and comes with quite a few segment first features such as cornering lights, rain sensing wipers and cruise control as standard. Besides these, it also gets alloy wheels, rear parking camera with sensors, climate control, rear AC vents, electrically foldable wing mirrors and a touchscreen audio system with steering mounted controls. In terms of safety, Volkswagen is offering ABS and dual airbags as standard across all three trims of the Ameo.

Volkswagen Ameo Gearbox

Behind the Ameo’s sleek triple slat grille sits a 1.2-litre, three-cylinder petrol engine – the only engine option for Ameo buyers for now. Fret not; you will also be able to buy this car with an entirely new 1.5-litre, 110bhp diesel engine by the festive season.

Coming back to the engine that you can have right now, the three-pot motor develops 74bhp of power and 110Nm of torque which translates to a 0-100kmph sprint time of around 15 seconds. With such figures to its credit, the Ameo is barely a speed machine. If anything, its lack of grunt is immediately noticeable when it comes to overtaking on the highway or mid-gear acceleration from 70kmph to about triple digit speeds. What adds to the woes is the way this engine builds up revs. That typical three-cylinder thrum is always present and the overall engine refinement levels aren’t too nice either. Under heavy acceleration, the Ameo’s engine is clearly more vocal than the Xcent’s and round about the same as the Amaze.

Don’t let the sporty looking flat-bottom steering wheel fool you. The Ameo is a compact sedan, after all, and it handles exactly like it’s supposed to. Like all other cars in its class, the Ameo’s suspension set up has been oriented towards comfort. That said, it has got the second best balance between ride and handling, after the Honda Amaze. The steering on the Ameo feels vague around the straight-ahead position and is slow to turn in. It’s initially light but becomes gradually heavier as more lock is applied. All in all, it lacks the consistency in feel that’s to be found in rivals like the Ford Figo Aspire.

The production-spec Ameo rides on 15-inch wheels as opposed to the bigger 16-inchers seen on the show car at the Auto Expo. Nevertheless, the Ameo’s ride quality is quite good – we sampled it across both pothole-ridden city streets and wide open tarmac on the highway. It deals with undulated surfaces rather well despite transmitting some sharp bumps from on the road into the cabin. So what’s not to like in terms of dynamics? Well, the Ameo, like all other compact sedans, has that inherent floatiness to its high speed ride. One has to make constant steering corrections to keep the thing true to its line.

Volkswagen Ameo Riding

The exact performance figures will come in picture once the car starts to spend some time in the actual driving conditions. Until then, we can expect it to offer a comfortable drive even in tough driving conditions. The ABS is definitely a benefit when it comes to handling of the car. The power steering with tilt and telescopic features further make things easier for the driver.

Volkswagen Ameo Safety

This is one of the areas where Volkswagen usually scores over its rivals in most of the segments. The Ameo is the only vehicle in its class to come with dual-front airbags along with ABS (anti-lock braking system) as standard. The diesel automatic also offers ESP (electronic stabilisation programme) and Hill-Hold Control. The Ameo is Volkswagen’s first Made-for-India offering and will compete with the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Swift DZire, the Hyundai Xcent, the Honda Amaze, the Ford Figo Aspire, and the Tata Zest.

Volkswagen Ameo Price in Bangalore

Volkswagen Ameo On Road Price is 8,55,540/- and Ex-showroom Price is 7,00,000/- in Bangalore. Volkswagen Ameo comes in 5 colours, namely Blue Slik,Candy White,Carbon Steel,Riflex Silver,Toffee Brown. Volkswagen Ameo comes with FWD with 1498 CC Displacement and 4 Cylinders with Maximum Power 108 bhp@4000 rpm and Peak Torque 250 Nm@1500-3000 rpm DRIVE TRAIN FWD and reaches 100 KMPH at N/A . Volkswagen Ameo comes with Manual Transmission with FWD .Check for Ameo price in Bangalore at Tryaldrive.

Volkswagen Ameo Bottomline

The Ameo looks pretty decent but quite similar to other Volkswagen cars, though the sides are rather plain. The rear end of the car lacks some curves that would have given the car a better look. In terms of comfort and interiors, Ameo seems to be very promising. Even in terms of engine and handling, there seems to be a lot of positivity about the car. However, the car needs to perform in regular driving conditions to be able to make a mark for itself in this tough segment that is currently ruled by Maruti, followed by Honda and Hyundai.

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