Can the Renault Pulse petrol hold its ground against the Figo petrol?

Here, we pitch the newly launched Pulse petrol top-end variant RxZ against the Figo petrol Titanium to know which car offers maximum bang for your buck.

Pulse-vs-Figo

Renault India launched the Pulse petrol hatchback with prices starting at Rs. 4.25 lakh. The Pulse borrows its body shell, mechanicals and even the 1.2-litre petrol engine from the Micra. The only difference being the exterior styling and the Renault badges. The Figo has been in the market for the past two years and is the volume driver for Ford in India. Thanks to the attractive pricing, the Figo is known for its space, comfort and features.

Performance and handling

The Pulse is powered by a 1.2-litre petrol motor that puts out 74.9 Bhp of power and 104 Nm of torque. The engine is mated to a 5-speed manual transmission and the car has a power-to-weight ratio of 83.2 Bhp per ton.

ford figo
Photo: Figo a big hit in India, is a good vehicle with ample space offering reasonable comfort

On the other hand, the Figo is powered by a 1.2-litre petrol motor that puts out 70 Bhp of power and 102 Nm of torque.  The Figo’s engine is mated to a 5-speed manual transmission. The Figo has a low power-to-weight ratio of 64.2 Bhp per ton because its kerb weight of 1090 kg is 195 kg more than the Pulse.

High power-to-weight ratio essentially means that the Pulse can accelerate and reach three digit speeds faster than the Figo. This also means that the Pulse is a lot peppier to drive in stop-go city traffic than the Figo.

With regard to handling, the Figo has an edge over the Pulse. The suspension setup in the Figo is appropriate for ride quality and handling. Besides, the hydraulic power steering of the Figo offers precise feedback and inspires confidence even when pushed hard. The Pulse has an electric power steering that is very light and doesn’t offer much feedback when the car is driven at high speeds. Summing up, the Pulse leads in performance while the Figo leads in the handling department.

Space and comfort

The Pulse is a bit longer (10 mm) and taller (103 mm) than the Figo though the Figo is a bit wider (15 mm) than the Pulse. Both the cars have spacious cabins that offer adequate legroom for front and rear seat passengers.

The Pulse has an edge when it comes to headroom while the Figo offers a bit more shoulder room for rear seat passengers.  Also, the Figo offers 284 litres of luggage space which is more than the Pulse’s 251 litres. Comfort wise, both the cars offer adequate under thigh support and lumbar support for short city commutes and occasional long drives.

Overall, the Pulse and the Figo have almost similar space and comfort. But the Figo has a slight edge over the Pulse when it comes to boot space.

Looks

The Figo is a pretty decent small car with a conventional design but it doesn’t appeal to all at first glance. The mildly pronounced wheel arches give it a sporty side profile while the low height makes it look a tad small than its actual size.

renault pulse india photo
Photo: The Pulse looks like a Nissan Micra on steroids thanks to its more aggressive styling

The Pulse has a radically different front bumper and sporty headlamps. The side profile reveals the large glass house area that gives an airy feel to the passengers. The tail lamp cluster of the Pulse mildly resembles that of the Toyota Liva. However, the well sculpted hatch door and rear bumper have a distinctive character. Though looks are subjective, we feel the Pulse is better looking than the Figo.

Features

The Pulse RxZ petrol variant has many features which are missing in the Figo Titanium. For instance, the Pulse RxZ comes with rear power windows, tilt adjustable steering, auto fold/unfold outside mirrors by remote sense, engine start/stop button, automatic climate control, rear wiper, anti-pinch safety function on driver side window and rear head restraints.  Both the cars come with driver and passenger airbag, ABS with EBD, engine immobilizer and central locking. Overall, the Pulse has a clear edge over the Figo when it comes to features.

Price, mileage and VFM

The Figo Titanium Petrol is priced at Rs. 4.96 lakh which is Rs. 59,000 less than the Pulse RxZ Petrol (Rs. 5.55 lakh). With regard to mileage, the Figo returns 15.6 Kmpl while the Pulse returns 18.06 Kmpl.

The Pulse is a better VFM because thought it is priced at a premium, it offers many features and is also more fuel efficient than the Figo.

Verdict

No doubt that the Figo is slightly more spacious and can handle better than the Pulse. However, the Pulse has a significant edge over the Figo in terms of performance, mileage, looks and features making it the winner in this comparison.