Snapshot: Indian roads are narrow and traffic infested, with the wheeled and non-wheeled kinds. If you like driving, the only time you can actually enjoy your car’s performance is when you’re at the traffic lights or perhaps on an open stretch of road. While twisties are out of the question in most Indian cities for the dangers that can lurk ahead of them, flooring the loud pedal when you see an empty stretch is perhaps the adrenaline rush one craves while driving in the city. In tune with this frame of mind, CarToq lists out India’s 5 fastest hatchback available for under 8 lakh rupees.
Honda Brio 1.2 Petrol
Pocket-rocket is an apt term for the Honda Brio. Compact, light and with an eager 1.2 liter i-VTEC petrol engine that loves the higher reaches of the rev range, the Brio is a fast car off the lights. With a 0-100 Kph run of 12.5 seconds, the Brio represents great bang for the buck, of the acceleration kind. The car’s 1.2 liter petrol engine outputs 88 Bhp-110 Nm while the manual gearbox is a slick 5 speed item. The Brio weighs in at 925 kilograms, a major advantage in the power-to-weight stakes. The car starts at 3.99 lakh rupees, ex-showroom Delhi. Top-end variants come with ABS+EBD and twin airbags.
Toyota Etios Liva Sportivo 1.5 Petrol
A car that looks dull and uninspiring but one that goes like stink in the straight line. That’s the Liva Sportivo 1.5 for you. Although Toyota has tried to spruce up the looks of the Liva by adding the Sportivo body kit and graphics, the car doesn’t really move our cheese when it comes to design. Move it does though in the real world’s performance stakes. Light and tinny, the Liva Sportivo comes with a 1.5 liter petrol engine that is good for a solid 89 Bhp-134 Nm, and a 5 speed stick shifter. This engine propels the 925 kilogram Liva to 100 Kph from standstill in 12 seconds. Around the bends, the Liva Sportivo is still a work in progress and is nowhere as planted or fun as its sedan sibling. The car is priced at 6.13 lakh rupees, ex-showroom Delhi and for this kind of money, you get twin airbags and ABS+EBD as standard fare.
Hyundai i20 1.4 Diesel
Like the Liva, the Hyundai i10 CRDI is a straight line scorcher. With a 1.4 liter turbo diesel engine that outputs 89 Bhp-220 Nm, the i20 gets up to speed quickly, with a 0-100 Kph sprint in 13 seconds. The refined 1.4 liter motor only encourages you to rev harder while the 6 speed manual gearbox slots in nicely. Show the i20 a corner or two and this is where the car’s overly light steering – which is a hoot to weave in and out of small gaps – and the soft suspension set up poops the car’s party. Strictly for the straight line traffic light GP specialists, the Hyundai i20 Diesel starts from 5.95 lakh rupees. The top end, ABS+EBD and Airbags equipped version of the car costs 7.53 lakhs, ex-showroom Delhi.
Volkswagen Polo 1.2 GT TSI Petrol
The only turbo petrol hatchback in the sub-10 lakh rupee category, the Polo 1.2 GT TSI is aimed squarely at the driving enthusiast. The car features a 1.2 liter TSI turbo petrol engine with a meaty torque band where it matters. The turbocharger added into the equation means that the Polo 1.2 TSI has nice in-gear acceleration, stuff that would otherwise require rapid downshifting on high strung petrol motors. Talking about highly strung petrols, the 1.2 TSI will out accelerate every other petrol car this side of 10 lakh rupees, what with a 0-100 Kph timing of 11 seconds. The 1.2 TSI motor outputs 103 Bhp-175 Nm and comes with a 7 speed DSG dual clutch automatic gearbox that allows you to focus on steering while it takes of lightning quick gear shifts. The Polo 1.2 GT TSI is priced at 7.8 lakh rupees, ex-showroom Delhi, and the car comes with twin airbags, ABS+EBD and ESP as standard.
Volkswagen Polo 1.6 GT TDI Diesel
The fastest diesel hatchback in India, the Polo TDI is also the most powerful hatchback in the country with its 1.6 liter TDI motor outputting 103 Bhp-250 Nm. A 5 speed manual gearbox powers the front wheels of the car. The Polo 1.6 TDI scampers to 100 Kph from standstill in 10.5 seconds while top speed is a heady 190 Kph. In a nutshell, the Polo 1.6 TDI is not just the fastest accelerating hatchback built in India, but is also the hatchback with the highest top speed in the country. Since the 1.6 liter TDI turbo diesel engine returns great fuel efficiency when driven sedately, the Polo GT TDI can shift seamlessly between Jekyll and Hyde modes. Like its GT TSI sibling, the GT TDI model comes with twin airbags and ABS+EBD. The car is similarly priced with the GT TSI model, at 7.8 lakh rupees, ex-showroom Delhi.