Long-term test (Introduction): Honda Amaze 1,2 Comfort
Slotting in just above Honda’s entry-level Brio hatch- back, the Amaze range (made up of three models) is the most affordable sedan from the Japanese importer.
Our test unit for the next three months is the Comfort variant. Equipped with a five-speed manual transmission, it’s set apart from the base Trend model by body-coloured door handles and side mirrors as well as front and rear mudguards.
On the inside, the Comfort sports chrome vent rings and silver door handles, while the side mirrors are both electrically adjustable and foldable. Thankfully, there is also Bluetooth connectivity and audio streaming.
At first glance, the Amaze offers a somewhat unusual design with its squared-off front and rear ends. The upside is a commodious boot offering more space than Honda’s Jazz, HR-V and Civic. The cabin design is basic but it does at least feature a two- tone colour theme throughout, including no-cost optional faux- leather seat covers. The sound system and the small dot-matrix display are positioned above the air-conditioning controls for easy viewing. In front of the gearlever are two cupholders and 12 V and USB sockets.
The Honda arrived shortly before our deadline, which means I still need to settle into the ownership experience. However, what was immediately apparent during my first outing was the liveliness of the engine and the fairly comfortable ride. The latter is assisted by a plump 175/65 R15 tyre-and-wheel combination. On the highway, the Amaze feels nicely stable.
Two main gripes are that, at 1,87 metres tall, I feel slightly too big for the car; I look through the windscreen close to the header rail, even with the driver’s seat at its lowest setting. The other niggle is the audio system’s screen that is simply too dimly lit. It is better at night, but is a real challenge to read in daylight. If, like me, you switch on the headlights during the day, it is even worse. Such an oversight seems rather curious in a modern vehicle.
Fuel consumption is currently hovering at the 6,7 L/100 km mark, which matches CAR’s fuel index figure, although I hope to lower this during the following two months. Make no mistake, this is a car designed to get you from A to B perfectly reliably at little cost.
After 1 month
Current Mileage: 90 km
Average fuel consumption: 6,7 L/100 km
We like: lively engine; boot capacity
We don’t like: dot-matrix screen’s readability
Long-term test (Update 1): Honda Amaze 1,2 Comfort
Since taking delivery of the Amaze, my driving style has completely changed. I still connect via Bluetooth to listen to my downloads but, instead of driving in the fast lane, I find myself more often occupying the middle lane at 100 km/h. Not that the Amaze can’t comfortably cruise at 120 km/h, but noise infiltration is slightly high at these speeds. So I relax in the middle lane and turn up the volume.
After 2 months
Current Mileage: 1 009 km
Average fuel consumption: 6,67 L/100 km
See Full Honda Amaze price and specs here