The Chevrolet Sail that was recently launched is priced very close to the Maruti Swift Dzire variant for variant. And on the face of it, the Sail is a bigger car – so you straight away get more car for your money. But how good a deal is it compared to the Maruti Swift Dzire when you look at all the aspects of the car?
We compare the Chevrolet Sail with the best-selling Maruti Swift Dzire to help you make an informed decision as to which car would suit you better. And, can the Sail really challenge the Swift Dzire, which sells over 15,000 cars a month while the Sail has clocked up just over a 1,000 bookings after a week of its launch? Also read: Can the Chevrolet Sail U-Va challenge the Maruti Swift?
Where the Chevrolet Sail is better
Safety and features
The Chevrolet Sail offers more by way of safety features variant for variant compared to the Maruti Swift Dzire. Three of the four variants in the petrol and diesel Chevrolet Sail come with a driver airbag as standard. The top two variants of the petrol and diesel Chevrolet Sail come with ABS as well, while the top-end LT variant also has a passenger airbag. In the Maruti Dzire only the ZXi and ZDI come with two airbags and ABS, while the others have none. The Chevrolet Sail also offers Bluetooth connectivity with its integrated music system, while the Dzire does not. The Dzire top-end also has steering audio controls and automatic climate control, while the Sail offers only manual HVAC control on all variants. The Sail offers power adjustable mirrors and windows on all variants, while the Dzire only has it on its top two variants. Also read: Chevrolet Sail launched, prices start at Rs. 4.99 lakh
Interior space and comfort
When it comes to interior space the Sail is much better than the Dzire. It can seat four adults comfortably and five at a pinch as shoulder room is a bit narrow, but what it does have is ample legroom for rear seat passengers. The seat bolstering is also better at the rear compared to the Dzire and it therefore makes for a more comfortable car to travel in. It can also take in a little more luggage as it has a 370 litre boot compared to only 316 litres on the diminutive Dzire.
The Sail is a longer car as well, and looks more proportionate overall. The suspension though is fairly stiff and you do feel bumps filtering into the cabin. But on rough roads it absorbs bumps better than the Dzire, which tends to get skittish (probably because it is a little lighter than the Sail). The Sail feels quite planted at cruising speeds, while the Dzire has a sportier ride – which will please the driver, but not the passengers much.
Warranty and maintenance coverage
What we think is a key selling point of the Sail is the warranty and maintenance coverage being offered by General Motors. The Sail comes with a five-year or 150,000 km warranty on engine and transmission. It also comes with a three-year, 100,000 km bumper to bumper warranty. And if you pay Rs. 19,000 you also get a three-year maintenance package, where all routine maintenance, including oil changes, filter changes etc are taken care of. If you choose not to opt for the maintenance package, you get the Chevrolet Promise – where anything over Rs. 24,000 in routine maintenance is reimbursed to the buyer. Also watch: Chevrolet Sail walkaround video
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Where the Maruti Dzire is better
Drive and handling
Those who love driving though would prefer the Dzire because it appeals to the driver much better than the Sail. The Sail goes about its job pretty clinically, driving in an unhurried manner, with boost from the turbocharger in the diesel coming on very linearly, unlike the Dzire which reacts like a scalded cat once it hits 2000 rpm. The Sail has a fairly well weighted steering, but somehow does not give you a feel of the road. The Dzire is not much better – it has a light steering, but it does give you a sporty feel while driving. The Dzire also feels more planted in fast turns, while the Sail tends to wallow a bit. Also read: Facelifted Maruti Dzire coming to counter Honda Amaze
If you take a look at both the Sail petrol and Sail diesel and compare it with the Dzire, both engines of the Dzire beat the Sail on performance, although the Sail has better figures on paper. The Sail’s 1.2 litre petrol engine puts out 85 bhp of power and 113 Nm of torque, similar to the Dzire (86 bhp and 114Nm). The diesel Sail in fact has more power on paper, but is still more sedate compared to the Dzire. The Sail puts out 77 bhp of power and 205 Nm of torque compared to 74 bhp and 190 Nm of the Dzire. Still, the Dzire has better gearing and tuning, which makes it quicker and peppier than the Sail. Both cars give similar fuel economy in petrol and diesel.
While GM is offering good warranty coverage and maintenance package on the Sail, the sheer size and availability of spares of the Maruti service network give the Dzire an advantage over the Sail. Warranty coverage is only up to 80,000 km or four years, with extended warranty. Given that the Sail diesel and Dzire diesel have almost the same engine, it’s really brave of GM to offer a much better warranty on it. Also read: Maruti Dzire road test – pocket sized fun
What we think
This comparison between the Sail and Dzire is one where you pitch boring practicality with outright popularity. The Sail is no head-turner, but it is really practical, especially if you are looking at it as an occasional chauffeur driven car. What’s the clincher for the Sail is the warranty and maintenance package being offered with the car. The Dzire is smaller and feels peppier, and has better service access – and it’s what everyone is buying almost like a default choice. If you think practically, the Sail is a better car – if you can live with the boring looks that is. Also read: Chevrolet Sail first-drive impression: Practical, but uninteresting sedan