10 Benefits Of Cloud Based System For Business

Simply put, cloud computing is computing based on the internet. Where in the past, people would run applications or programs from software downloaded on a physical computer or server in their building, cloud computing allows people access to the same kinds of applications through the internet.When you update your Facebook status, you’re using cloud computing. Checking your bank balance on your phone? You’re in the cloud again. Chances are you rely on cloud computing to solve the challenges faced by small businesses, whether you’re firing off emails on the move or using a bunch of apps to help you manage your workload.In short, cloud is fast becoming the new normal. By the end of 2015 it’s estimated that 90% of UK businesses will be using at least one cloud service.

Why are so many businesses moving to the cloud? It’s because cloud computing increases efficiency, helps improve cash flow and offers many more benefits…Check out ten of the best below.

1. Flexibility Cloud-based services are ideal for businesses with growing or fluctuating bandwidth demands. If your needs increase it’s easy to scale up your cloud capacity, drawing on the service’s remote servers. Likewise, if you need to scale down again, the flexibility is baked into the service. This level of agility can give businesses using cloud computing a real advantage over competitors – it’s not surprising that CIOs and IT Directors rank ‘operational agility’ as a top driver for cloud adoption.

2. Disaster recovery Businesses of all sizes should be investing in robust disaster recovery, but for smaller businesses that lack the required cash and expertise, this is often more an ideal than the reality. Cloud is now helping more organisations buck that trend. According to Aberdeen Group, small businesses are twice as likely as larger companies to have implemented cloud-based backup and recovery solutions that save time, avoid large up-front investment and roll up third-party expertise as part of the deal.

3. Automatic software updates The beauty of cloud computing is that the servers are off-premise, out of sight and out of your hair. Suppliers take care of them for you and roll out regular software updates – including security updates – so you don’t have to worry about wasting time maintaining the system yourself. Leaving you free to focus on the things that matter, like growing your business.

4. Capital-expenditure Free Cloud computing cuts out the high cost of hardware. You simply pay as you go and enjoy a subscription-based model that’s kind to your cash flow. Add to that the ease of setup and management and suddenly your scary, hairy IT project looks at lot friendlier. It’s never been easier to take the first step to cloud adoption.

5. Increased collaboration When your teams can access, edit and share documents anytime, from anywhere, they’re able to do more together, and do it better. Cloud-based workflow and file sharing apps help them make updates in real time and gives them full visibility of their collaborations.

6. Work from anywhere With cloud computing, if you’ve got an internet connection you can be at work. And with most serious cloud services offering mobile apps, you’re not restricted by which device you’ve got to hand.

The result? Businesses can offer more flexible working perks to employees so they can enjoy the work-life balance that suits them – without productivity taking a hit. One study reported that 42% of workers would swap a portion of their pay for the ability to telecommute. On average they’d be willing to take a 6% pay cut.

7. Document control The more employees and partners collaborate on documents, the greater the need for watertight document control. Before the cloud, workers had to send files back and forth as email attachments to be worked on by one user at a time. Sooner or later – usually sooner – you end up with a mess of conflicting file content, formats and titles.

And as even the smallest companies become more global, the scope for complication rises. According to one study, “73% of knowledge workers collaborate with people in different time zones and regions at least monthly”.

When you make the move to cloud computing, all files are stored centrally and everyone sees one version of the truth. Greater visibility means improved collaboration, which ultimately means better work and a healthier bottom line. If you’re still relying on the old way, it could be time to try something a little more streamlined.

8. Security Lost laptops are a billion dollar business problem. And potentially greater than the loss of an expensive piece of kit is the loss of the sensitive data inside it. Cloud computing gives you greater security when this happens. Because your data is stored in the cloud, you can access it no matter what happens to your machine. And you can even remotely wipe data from lost laptops so it doesn’t get into the wrong hands.

9. Competitiveness Wish there was a simple step you could take to become more competitive? Moving to the cloud gives access to enterprise-class technology, for everyone. It also allows smaller businesses to act faster than big, established competitors. Pay-as-you-go service and cloud business applications mean small outfits can run with the big boys, and disrupt the market, while remaining lean and nimble. David now packs a Goliath-sized punch.

10. Environmentally friendly While the above points spell out the benefits of cloud computing for your business, moving to the cloud isn’t an entirely selfish act. The environment gets a little love too. When your cloud needs fluctuate, your server capacity scales up and down to fit. So you only use the energy you need and you don’t leave oversized carbon footprints. This is something close to our hearts at Salesforce, where we try our best to create sustainable solutions with minimal environmental impact.

 

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5 Reasons You Need An Affordable Business Phone Number For Your Home Based Business

A business phone number not only separates your business and personal calls, but when it is powered by the right technology and backed by excellent features, it can take your business to the next level.You made the decision to work from home – whether to spend more time with the kids, avoid the rising costs of child care, or just get away from the long daily commute and office grind – but working from home does not mean you cannot separate personal-communications and work-communications.You have a mobile phone, so you may be wondering why you need a separate phone number for your home business. But, think about the next vendor or client you meet and their less-than-appealing personality. Do you really want to give that person your personal cell phone number? Rest assured, there are ways to use your cellphone without having to compromise your personal security.

Or that important new client is calling, but because the number is so similar to your sister’s, you… well… let’s just say you answer the call in a manner that you perhaps might not have, if you had only realized it was actually your next big client calling.

If you still think there’s no need for a separate business phone number, here are five reasons to reconsider.

1. Sound and Look More Professional

Whether you freelance or you are working on a startup, you rely on your home office to get your work done. If you want clients and vendors to take your business seriously – despite the fact you’re taking phone calls with a toddler hanging off your hip – a dedicated line can help.With a dedicated business number you are no longer giving out your personal cellphone number – and it gives the impression you don’t work alone, even if you do. Just make sure you opt for a phone service that offers you a dedicated line and the ability to forward those calls to your mobile phone – so you can easily keep in touch regardless of where you are.If your home business has a website – and let’s face it, in this day and age if you don’t have one, you really should – adding your business phone number to your contact page and header makes your business look that much more professional and legitimate.It hasn’t been proven and of course Google isn’t talking, but it has been talked about by top SEO consultants that having a “contact us” page with valid information – including address and phone number – helps with SEO efforts – especially if you want to rank in local searches. It would seem that Google gives more credibility and legitimacy to websites that are transparent with their contact information.

2. Utilize Call Forwarding to Route Calls to your Mobile Phone

With smart call forwarding, you do not have to share your cell phone number when you leave the office. Instead, business contacts dial your business line as usual, and it forwards that call to your mobile phone regardless of where you are. The caller never knows you are answering via your cell phone unless you tell them.With forwarding, you don’t miss important phone calls, but you still keep your privacy. Whether you are out on a sales visit, showing a new house or picking up the kids from school, business keeps going. No matter what, don’t forget to set business hours and an after hours greeting that then forwards calls to your business voicemail – that way you aren’t getting calls on your cell phone at 2:00 am.Here at Revuezzle we utilize call forwarding from Phone.com so that our team members are able use their cellphones to conduct business but never have to worry about giving out their personal cell phone numbers to business contacts. We can easily see if the call is a business call or a personal call and answer accordingly. When making calls from our cell phone, it’s just a matter of utilizing either the free phone.com iPhone or Android app and the person we are calling will never know we are calling from a cell phone unless we tell them – the number that shows up on their caller ID is our business number.

3. You Get Clearer Call Quality

Cellphones are notorious for poor call quality. If your home office tends to have a few dead zones or that 4G you paid for isn’t working, you risk giving clients an inadequate call experience. With a dedicated business phone number, and HD digital phones, you can offer your clients and vendors better call quality, limited disruptions, and a fixed network.Virtual Phone System merchants offer HD quality digital business phones from top phone makers like Polycom, Panasonic, and Cisco, that come precon figured so that they are plug and use ready. Prices for these phones are very reasonable and in some cases like RingCentral, you can even rent them if buying a desktop phone doesn’t appeal to you. If you already have a phone you want to use, most merchants will allow you to use them with some setup on your end.

4. Offer Your Customers the Advantage of a Toll-Free or Vanity Number

Want customers from around the country to call you without paying long-distance rates? You can add even more professionalism and convenience by using a toll-free number.With most plans you can get a toll free number Free, or if you want to keep your existing local number an add a toll free number – the toll free number is less than $5 a month in most cases.If your business wants a competitive edge or you just want your company personality to shine through, look for a vendor that offers vanity numbers. Vanity numbers immediately identify your business to your customers – for example 1-800-FLOWERS.Have international clients? Some phone services also offer Global Virtual Numbers, that provide flat rate international numbers that provide your customers anywhere in the world with a local number to call at standard US local rates. Your clients will appreciate the savings.

5. It Really Doesn’t Cost That Much

Let’s be real. Professional phone services do not cost as much as you think – and if it’s really a big deal, remember it is a tax deduction. Most phone services for home-based businesses are extremely affordable, especially when you consider the free features, convenience of a dedicated line, and the fact you aren’t giving out your own personal number to new business contacts

 

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What Are The Opportunities & Risks Of Using Cloud Computing ?

Cloud computing is a buzzword that means different things to different people. For some, it’s just another way of describing IT (information technology) “outsourcing”; others use it to mean any computing service provided over the Internet or a similar network; and some define it as any bought-in computer service you use that sits outside your firewall. However we define cloud computing, there’s no doubt it makes most sense when we stop talking about abstract definitions and look at some simple, real examples—so let’s do just that

Cloud computing is here and virtually every organization is using it in some way, shape, or form. Educating yourself and your people on the opportunities and risks associated with this technology is of the utmost importance. Let’s look at the opportunities presented by cloud computing, managing the risks associated with housing your sensitive data offsite, using virtual computing environments, and vendor management considerations as you explore your cloud options.

What is “The Cloud?”

“The Cloud” is an all-encompassing term for a virtualized information technology (IT) computing environment in which individuals and businesses work with applications and data stored and maintained on shared machines in a web-based environment, rather than physically located in a user’s location. Google’s popular email system, Gmail, is an example of the cloud, but this is just one model. There are actually three cloud service models — infrastructure as a service, platform as a service, and software as a service — deployed in four types of settings — private, community, public, and hybrid clouds.

Service models

Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) provides access to server hardware, storage, network capacity, and other fundamental computing resources.

Platform as a service (PaaS) provides access to basic operating software and services to develop and use customer-created software applications.

Software as a service (SaaS) provides integrated access to a provider’s software applications.

Deployment models

Private cloud is accessible from an intranet, internally hosted, and used by a single organization.

Community cloud has infrastructure accessible to a specific community.

Public cloud is accessible from the internet, externally hosted, and used by the general public.

Hybrid cloud is a combination of two or more clouds.

Cloud benefits

Cloud computing provides a scalable online environment that makes it possible to handle an increased volume of work without impacting system performance. Cloud computing also offers significant computing capability and economy of scale that might not otherwise be affordable, particularly for small and medium-sized organizations, without the IT infrastructure investment. Cloud computing advantages include:

Lower capital costs — Organizations can provide unique services using large-scale computing resources from cloud service providers, and then nimbly add or remove IT capacity to meet peak and fluctuating service demands while only paying for actual capacity used.

Lower IT operating costs — Organizations can rent added server space for a few hours at a time rather than maintain proprietary servers without worrying about upgrading their resources whenever a new application version is available. They also have the flexibility to host their virtual IT infrastructure in locations offering the lowest cost.

No hardware or software installation or maintenance

Optimized IT infrastructure provides quick access to needed computing services

The risks

Environmental security — The concentration of computing resources and users in a cloud computing environment also represents a concentration of security threats. Because of their size and significance, cloud environments are often targeted by virtual machines and bot malware, brute force attacks, and other attacks. Ask your cloud provider about access controls, vulnerability assessment practices, and patch and configuration management controls to see that they are adequately protecting your data.

Data privacy and security — Hosting confidential data with cloud service providers involves the transfer of a considerable amount of an organization’s control over data security to the provider. Make sure your vendor understands your organization’s data privacy and security needs. Also, make sure your cloud provider is aware of particular data security and privacy rules and regulations that apply to your entity, such as HIPAA, the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (DCI DSS), the Federal Information Security Management Act of 2002 (FISMA), or the privacy considerations of Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act.

Data availability and business continuity — A major risk to business continuity in the cloud computing environment is loss of internet connectivity. Ask your cloud provider what controls are in place to ensure internet connectivity. If a vulnerability is identified, you may have to terminate all access to the cloud provider until the vulnerability is rectified. Finally, the seizure of a data-hosting server by law enforcement agencies may result in the interruption of unrelated services stored on the same machine.

Record retention requirements — If your business is subject to record retention requirements, make sure your cloud provider understands what they are and so they can meet them.

Disaster recovery — Hosting your computing resources and data at a cloud provider makes the cloud provider’s disaster recovery capabilities vitally important to your company’s disaster recovery plans. Know your cloud provider’s disaster recovery capabilities and ask your provider if they been tested.

 

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10 Affordable Benefits of Using A Virtual Phone System

If you own or run a company, you will more than likely be familiar with a PBX (private branch exchange) phone system. This local phone network allows your workers/employees access to phone calls while sharing a few external company phone lines or numbers. In other words, customers calling your company’s phone number can be quickly routed to the proper agents or branches within your company.Obviously, having an efficient PBX phone system is crucial to the operation of any company – big or small. Therefore, choosing and implementing any PBX should be taken seriously because your decision can often determine how successful your company will become in the future.

With competition getting fiercer in almost all business sectors, it is critically important for a business enterprise to have an efficient communication system for it to stay and survive and grow. After studying various phone systems available in the market, it can be said without fear of contradiction that a hosted PBX virtual phone service is the best option for small and midsize business houses to optimally meet their communication needs.The hosted virtual PBX solution offers you numerous useful features compared to the old hardware based systems and more than that, it enables you to save a lot of money. Yet another huger benefit of virtual PBX system is that you need not invest in costly equipment and the maintenance and support is the responsibility of the service provider.

In recent years, many company owners and managers are opting for a virtual PBX system. These are VOIP (voice over IP) phone systems which operate on the web. It is often referred to as “Cloud” services because these programs are hosted by remote providers – far removed from one’s base of operation.Why are companies opting for this virtual solution? Perhaps, the over-riding reason has to do with the major benefits using a virtual phone exchange gives any company. These are discussed in some detail below, and if you’re considering a virtual PBX system they are probably worth knowing.

1. Total Integration

Let’s face it; we have become a totally mobile computer obsessed world – one that is completely connected every second of every day. Total integration of your company into this mobile connected world is the only way to proceed. Using a virtual PBX system will fully integrate your company’s operations into this wireless environment and synchronize all your operations with your computer network.

2. Quick Set-up Or Installation

Installation or set-up is almost instant as there are no landlines or hardware to install. The common use of cell phones, mobile tablets/laptops makes setting up a Virtual PBX system quite painless. While many virtual phone providers do supply special VOIP phones your company can use, but depending on the size of your operation, your current smartphones and computers may suffice.

3. Cheaper Costs With One Monthly Payment

Virtual phone systems usually cost less than traditional ones – especially when you consider the expense of installation and ongoing maintenance of a landline system. There is one low monthly payment, and long-distance calls will be cheaper over a VOIP system.

4. Completely Scalable

A virtual phone system is completely scalable – you can add lines or numbers within seconds. This factor is important if your company is growing quickly and you want to keep costs to a minimum.

5. Location Independence

With a web-based phone service, you and your workers have complete access regardless of where they are located. This location independence means your company is no longer limited to one location. Also, it means customers can reach your company 24/7, 365 days of the year.

6. Flexible

These virtual phone systems are very flexible when it comes to call management. There are many options including voice mail, direct routing or even a virtual secretary if you’re operating on a small budget.

7. Convenience

Again, having a web-based system will offer much more convenience since you and your workers are no longer restricted to one location. Calls can be accessed from anywhere at any time, so this offers great convenience to your workers.

8. Enhance Customer Interaction

Virtual systems can offer greater enhanced customer interaction especially if they are set-up properly where a customer is quickly directed to the right service or employee that can solve their problem or issue within minutes.

9. Internet Fax

Most of these virtual phone providers also offer Internet or online fax as an additional feature that can be a major benefit for companies. Online faxing is portable, convenient, flexible and much cheaper than traditional faxing methods.

10. Competitiveness

Competitiveness is a major benefit that should be considered by any company opting for a virtual or cloud solution to their phone network operations. Any owner will have to consider if having a phone system that is mobile, scalable, flexible, convenient, cost-efficient and totally integrated into the web will simply make your company more competitive?

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Renault Duster Engine & Safety Features

INTRODUCTION ;

It is the revised and improved version of the SUV that started the avalanche of compact SUVs in the country; a segment that the Hyundai Creta is currently milking. The Creta had delivered a knockout punch to the Duster not just by winning every comparison test it entered, but by outselling the Renault Duster by a huge margin.The latter isn’t taking this thrashing lying down, and now with its refreshed exterior, improved interior quality, more equipment and crucially, an affordable and efficient automatic gearbox, the Renault Duster is back with a vengeance. Check price of Duster

DESIGN ;

Those anticipating a sea change to the exterior would be disappointed to know that Renault hasn’t fiddled much with the Duster’s design. Yes, the purposeful-looking stance is still there though what’s new for this 2016 model is some garnishing to the bits that matter. The square-ish headlights, for instance, are a lot busier now and feature multiple sharp creases and the front bumper, too, is equally refreshed with dollops of brushed silver cladding.

Never is a major facelift complete without a newer set of alloy wheels and for the Duster, Renault has opted for a 5-spoke blacked-out design that seems to have been inspired from those good old die-cast models from Hot Wheels. Apply car loan for Duster at Carzprice

The new Duster also gets chunky-looking roof rails, different wing mirrors and a revised taillight cluster with funky detailing. While these new taillights retain the basic shape of the old units, they do look rather nice when lit up. Rounding off the changes, there’s a new colour option as seen on the car here. Called Cayenne orange, this shade really brings out the taut and beefy lines of the Duster.

CABIN ;

The interior too is familiar but the upgrades and changes made do go a long way in making it a lot more user friendly. For starters the ridiculous ORVM adjustment switch is no longer below the handbrake and has now found a new position on the driver’s side. There are also a set of new AC vents which get a lovely contrast surround option on a few select variants. The new centre console is smart and not overdone in any way.

The Duster also gets climate control now but the touchscreen infotainment system is pretty much similar to what we got earlier. That said, the screen position has been moved slightly lower than before making it difficult to read the map at a quick glance or do simple acts like playing a new song or choosing another radio station. The quality of the plastics too have improved over the early cars but there are still niggles on certain panels that continue to persist. Other features include cruise control, a reversing camera with parking sensors and GPS navigation which comes as standard on the top of the line variant.

Although Renault has skipped on the leather seat option, the fabric seats do offer a sense of richness with its dual textured. Again, as with the accents on the dashboard, certain variants like the AWD get unique fabrics and colors that do look a lot better. That said, the issue with the driver’s side seat, which tends to rock back and forth when put on its lowest setting still exists as it did on the original Duster and that, in our opinion is frankly unacceptable.

Rear seats are comfortable but do not have a 60/40 folding split. Legspace seems to have improved over the earlier car due to a scooped out front seat and the omission of the rear AC vents. That said, in a market like India, we would have much rather preferred a rear AC system instead of extra few centimeters of legspace.

ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION ;

As before, the Duster is available with a 104PS, 1.6-litre petrol engine, an 85PS, 1.5-litre diesel and a 110PS, 1.5-litre diesel. Again, front-wheel drive is standard though the 110PS diesel can also be opted with all-wheel drive. What is new is the option of an automated manual transmission or AMT for the 110PS front-wheel drive Duster. Renault calls the system Easy-R (to be read as ‘easier’) and, well, it does make driving in heavy traffic less of a chore.

At mild throttle inputs in average scenarios, automatic gearshifts on the six-speed ’box are timely and largely predictable. Gearshifts aren’t exactly seamless, but unlike the characteristically abrupt shifts of other AMTs, the Duster’s gearbox swaps ratios more progressively. We suspect the K9K 1.5 diesel engine’s relatively heavier flywheel has a smoothening effect. The Duster Automatic is the first AMT to come with hill-start assist too, which allows for safe getaways on an incline.

Where the Duster’s AMT unit does get caught out is when you press down hard on the accelerator, say to overtake. There’s a bit of a delay before the gearbox downshifts to the right gear and in general, there’s no escaping the characteristic AMT ‘head-nod’ or pause in power between gearshifts. Gearshifts are expectantly not as fluid as on the Creta’s more sophisticated torque converter unit, but its safe to say this is the best AMT in the market today.

The Easy-R gearbox does give drivers the option to shift manually too. In manual mode, gearshifts are nicer and what’s good is that the electronics don’t intervene with an upshift right till 5000rpm. This is an important point because it gives you better control especially through corners and on hilly roads.

Earlier Dusters were known for transmitting road shock through the steering wheel and while this has been minimised, there’s still a fair bit of judder that filters through the steering whilst cornering on rough roads. Handling on the whole though is surefooted and predictable and the Duster’s legendary ability to flatten bad roads is just as good. The suspension is one of the highlights on the Duster. While it can come across as a tad stiff at low speeds, it absorbs just about everything at higher speeds. The AWD version gets independent rear suspension that is a touch more supple and sure-footed but, as mentioned, it doesn’t come with an AMT option, which is only reserved for the front-wheel-drive version.

DRIVING DYNAMICS

Ride quality of the Duster is also a big plus. The monocoque construction, the rigid chassis and a good match in the 215/65 R16 tyres give the Duster confident handling characteristics on the highway and winding hill roads. The suspension set up includes anti-roll bars at the front and the rear. Though very bad roads momentarily seem to leave the Duster a bit unsettled, the suspension does an excellent job of soaking up most of the challenges that regular roads throw at it. Some amount of road and wind noise seeped into the cabin in the RxL variant I was driving, but that could be a one-off. The noise was absent in the RxZ variant I drove later and I am also told by Renault engineers that considerable work has been done on insulating the cabin.

SAFETY FEATURES ;

The New Renault Duster AMT gets safety features like ABS & EBD, along with brake assist function. There is ESP and hill-start assist too, as well as dual air-bags at the front. It also has central locking, speed sensitive door locking and driver seat belt warning. The New Renault Duster AMT is fairly feature loaded.

CONCLUSSION ;

The Renault Duster has now got a new lease of life with so many significant updates. It looks younger, gets more appeal and also comes with the convenience of an AMT gearbox. Sure, it lacks the finesse of its direct rival, the Hyundai Creta, but otherwise it is very fun to drive and power is in abundance too. The Renault Duster has positioned itself as a very strong product in the affordable SUV space and with all these enhancements, the vehicle has just improved its own standing in the market.

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Mercedes Benz CLA Class Performance

OVERVIEW

The Mercedes CLA is an entry-level sedan offered by the Stuttgart-based automaker. The CLA was first launched a couple of years back and it is based on the A-Class. The sedan is one of the best looking cars out there in the market and now the automaker has given it a minor update as part of a mid-life facelift The Mercedes CLA is known to be one of the most aerodynamic cars. The vehicle has sporty dynamics and while it isn’t targeted towards families or people looking for rear seat space, the CLA makes for a smart choice for the millennials.

EXTERIOR AND DESIGN

A coupe like looks with futuristically rounded tail lamps & frameless doors had always been one of the strong points for Mercedes CLA ever since its launch. The long swooping bonnet merging into the neatly flowing roof line at the rear renders an impeccable silhouette for the most stylish car on offer in the segment. The classic Mercedes emblem resting snugly on sloping bonnet along with a large three pointed star on the grille creates a nice identity statement for the brand.

One look at the side profile & you cannot miss the beautifully crafted doors with smooth flowing folds lines that define the bold character for the car.

Like the exteriors, you will find a lot of similarity with the Mercedes A Class. The retro sporty style AC vents with a large dia shouts out loud on the dashboard & is one of the most noticeable design touches on the interior. 2017 CLA also comes with a refreshed dashboard insert with a new colour & a rich texture adding a pinch of luxury premium to the interiors.

INTERIOR AND SPACE

Inside a Benz, there are some things that you can take for granted like luxury, comfort and amazing fit and finish of trims. The CLA too follows the same tradition of delivering one of the finest interiors seen in a luxury compact sedan.

It looks visually more appealing than an Audi A3 as the complex lines of the dashboard paired with the mix of use of aluminium, soft touch leather and soft touch buttons make it feel expensive. The front dashboard, like the A-Class, borrows many elements including the air con vents and instrumental styling from the higher models thus making its customer feel connected with the brand.

It comes with sporty seats for the front as well as rear passengers. Unlike the hot seats in the CLA45AMG, these seats are comparatively more comfortable. The front zone can accommodate fairly tall passengers provided they are not too keen on moving their knees around. The rear passengers are not in for any joy as the sloping rear roofline will be an obstacle always especially if the car is being driven enthusiastically. While the rear passengers do get a door handle on top to hold, the front co-passenger doesn’t get one.

The other issue being that of the front view getting completely blocked by tall front seats. It gets individual rear seats which can seat only two occupants in comfort and leaves a remote possibility of squeezing one more provided he agrees to sit in between with a folded central armrest to his back support.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE

;We are test-driving the CLA 200 here and mechanically, the car is unchanged from before this refresh. Under the hood is the same 1991cc, four-cylinder turbo-petrol with a power rating of 184hp and maximum torque of 300Nm. The engine is quite responsive and generally quick off the line, with barely perceptible turbo lag. It spins quite freely and propels the car into three-digit speeds without breaking a sweat. It is mated to a seven-speed, dual-clutch automatic gearbox which complements the car’s sporty orientation rather well.

Press the accelerator sedately and the gearbox skips through the ratios rather quickly to maximise efficiency and minimise engine noise. In fact, the upshifts, under such gentle driving, are more or less seamless. Slam the gas hard, though, and you will see the speedo needle spin to the redline (in Sport mode) before the gearbox shifts up. It transforms from a sedate background worker to a frontline soldier almost immediately. It is so eager and aggressive that it will gladly downshift two ratios at a time if it senses urgency in your foot flexing. And if you’re still not satisfied, all you need to do is tug at the paddles behind the wheel to take control (or at least most of it) of gear shifts.

The engine is mostly refined, though it does become progressively more vocal with rising revs; mind you, this is not a complaint, because its snarl is rather satisfying. The different engine modes – Comfort, Sport and Eco – mainly alter the engine and gearbox response.

RIDE AND HANDLING

While the engines are powerful enough for the segment, it is the transmission that takes the cake. The 7G-DCT dual-clutch gearbox combines the comfort of a 7-speed automatic transmission with the driving dynamics of a manual, and is perfectly aligned to the power output of these engines. The gearbox consists of two sub-transmissions—one transfers the tractive power to the wheels while the other preselects the next gear, leading to quick, smooth shifts.

The ground clearance of 165 mm ensures the CLA won’t scrape most speed-breakers found on our roads. But while the ride quality is good, on bad roads the CLA turns a little nervous; however, the ride quality never goes harsh. The car behaves its best on smooth roads and cornering even at high speeds is a lot of fun. Braking is spot-on.

SAFETY

Being a Mercedes, there are a host of safety features. You get attention assist (which monitors the steering behaviour of the driver, recognises signs of drowsiness and warns accordingly); automatic headlamp; ABS; electronic stability; tyre pressure monitor; reverse camera; and six airbags.

CONCLUSSION

The Indian introduction of the Mercedes Benz CLA has been a highly anticipated one. The good news is, the CLA doesn’t disappoint. It is good looking, well put together and premium and luxurious for its class. It’s well specced too, and honestly, it isn’t too bad a drive; the petrol for sure isn’t. So, is it worth buying? Yes, it is! And should you also consider it over all else in the same price bracket? Well, now that’s a difficult one because if it’s value you want, there are clearly better options. But, if it’s a badge you want to flaunt and feel good about, yes, the CLA is just the ticket.

 

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Hyundai Grand i10 Facelift Performance & Test Drive

OVERVIEW ;

Hyundai Motors India LTD launched the facelift Grand i10 in India; the hatchback was unveiled for the first time in UK last year. While the hatchback is sold in the European market as the new generation i10 the same car is sold alongside its predecessor in the Indian market.The facelift hatchback which was launched yesterday promises redefined exterior styling, Hi-tech Features, improved performance and Fuel Efficiency. Priced in between INR 4.58 Lakhs – to INR 7.33 Lakhs (ex-showroom Delhi), this new hatchback surely brings a lot on the table.

DESIGN AND STYLE ;

There are very few changes to the exteriors but they do give the car a fresher look. The front bumper gets a mild tweak in design which includes a new fog lamp housing, honey comb grille and LED DRLs, which come on only when the handbrake is disengaged. The side profile continues to remain similar save for the redesigned 14-inch alloy wheels. At the rear, the bumper gets the most apparent change which includes a thick black strip with circular reflectors on either side. The Grand i10 has always been a pleasant looking car and the update looks good too. Find best offers on Grand i10

CABIN AND COMFORT ;

Step inside & you’ll find yourself wearing a nice, cheery smile near instantly. The cabin is a class act on the Grand i10. Fit & Finish levels are brilliant for the class. The dashboard is neat & well-put together. Get behind the steering wheel & you recognize the parts sharing that’s gone behind the car, but all that doesn’t really matter. You notice the fully-specced out interiors.The seat height adjust, the Bluetooth enabled entertainment systems; auto-folding mirrors, key-less entry & push-button start. Hyundai have even gone ahead & given the car a cooled glove-box for good measure! Plus, there’s enough storage options in the dash, the gear console & the door-pads to keep everyone happy as punch. What’s more, open the trunk & you’ll be delighted to see the amount of space that’s available. There’s enough in there to stow away the weekend luggage for all four occupants, with the backpack & duffel bag for the fifth occupant squeezed right in.

ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION ;

This new hatchback also gets a new power source; an all-new, 1.1-litre, three-cylinder diesel motor (codename: U2) which develops 70bhp. Now, diesel engines and three cylinders don’t really go well together, as both are inherently prone to vibration, so it’s no surprise that the Grand i10 flutters and vibrates softly at idle. This new engine may be essentially Hyundai’s 1.4 four-cylinder unit with a cylinder chopped off, but that creamy idle is gone.Counter-balancing shafts have been used to iron out the inherent imbalance of a three-cylinder configuration, so when you rev the engine, it smoothens out a bit. There is a hint of turbo lag, but after 1,500rpm, the motor pulls cleanly and with a fair amount of enthusiasm. Performance feels smooth and linear at best, but you truly miss that strong surge in the mid-range that is so typical of more powerful diesel motors. The top-end isn’t strong either, and the engine labours as you cross the 3,500rpm mark, so it’s best to upshift early. Refinement on the move, however, is pretty good. At low revs, the engine is never intrusive and it’s only when you near the redline that you can really tell it’s a diesel. It must be said that this motor lacks the punch needed to really make the Grand i10 fun to drive, but the new Hyundai does have the right gearing for city driving. The short gearing makes you feel at home in the city and coupled with short throws, navigating through the box isn’t tiresome. We also had a go in the petrol version of the Grand i10 with the manual gearbox (it’s also available with a four-speed automatic). It uses the same 1.2-litre ‘Kappa 2’ four-cylinder motor as the current i10, which is equipped with variable valve timing (VVT in Hyundai speak).And just like the i10, it feels fairly peppy to drive. It may lack the outright performance of cars like the Swift or the Brio but, the power delivery is smooth and there is adequate power throughout most of the rev-range. You get useable power from 1500rpm and this makes it comfortable to drive in the city. Also, a strong mid-range means you can easily cruise at a reasonable 100kph on the highway and still have some power left in reserve for a quick overtaking manoeuvre.

DRIVING DYNAMICS ;

The ride quality is pliant & the car handles bumps rather maturely. She’s a little out of her element when faced with quick directional changes, but make no mistake. She’ll pull through whatever you throw at her, just not in the most graceful manner, that’s all. The steering feedback sadly is still the typical Hyundai legacy affair & no matter how much time I spend behind the wheel, I still haven’t gotten used to it. The glaring lack of feedback is disappointing & takes away a lot from an otherwise solid city runabout package.

SAFETY FEATURES ;

Talking about the safety features, the facelift like Grand i10 gets advanced safety features Rear Parking Assist System with Dual Airbags, ABS, Reverse Parking Sensors and newly introduced Rear Parking Camera which displays all the output on the newly added 7.0 Inch touchscreen monitor.

VERDICT ;

Totally loved the Grand i10 when we had one in our long term fleet and with this update, Hyundai has refreshed the car nicely. The new diesel engine is very good for the segment and even though it still is a 3-cylinder unit, I think it offers very good performance and efficiency. The Grand also has an excellent ride and is pretty easy to drive. The interiors boast of excellent quality materials and even the fit and finish of exterior panels is better than most rivals out there. For me, the Hyundai Grand i10 is easily one of the best city hatchbacks around.

 

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Renault Kwid Facelift Overview

OVERVIEW ;

This, the new Renault Kwid AMT, is possibly the last chapter in the current Kwid’s evolution story. The story itself mirrors that of the high-selling Alto quite closely: First there was the 800cc, then the 1-litre came along, and now there’s the 1-litre with the AMT ‘box. And, we must say, this one is special. Sure, it has its shortcomings, but as a package for first time car buyers, it does more right than WRONG. Check price of Kwid

DESIGN ;

The Renault Kwid, happily, doesn’t evoke any of that. Dimensionally, it belongs to its class but design wise it is not anything we have ever seen in the segment. With its SUV inspired styling and a much modern design, it will strike a quick rapport with both the vibrant young as well as the sanely matured. Not an exaggeration to say, this ne also proved to be a looker as we kept answering the curious beings all over.

A dark chain linked grille holds the bold Renault logo on the front with slender clear lens headlamps to the side. To add some razzmatazz, there is chrome detailing done inside the headlamps. Move behind and you would see the muscular contours curving below the grille. The fog lamp housing also gets swanky matte surround; affixed to the bumper.

The front hood has multiple characteristic lines to make it look more appealing and the same can be felt with the steeply designed windscreen. The strong shoulder line flows from the muscular wheel arch in the front before parting way and moving up towards the C-pillar. The efforts taken to make the Kwid look distinct from other offerings can be seen with intricate detailing done on the side such as scooped door handle pockets, boxy fuel lid shape and other contour lines on the side profile. Apply car loan for Kwid at Carzprice

The ORVMs are done in contrasting black and need to be manually adjusted from outside. The matte cladding running over squarish wheel arches on the front and rear doesn’t look out of sync and instead blend nicely with the overall arrangement. The tall ground clearance of 180mm makes it sound relevant to the SUV inspiration and is also a best in class feature.

CABIN ;

One step into the Kwid and you already know you are getting into a fairly spacious hatchback by segment standards. The chunky steering wheel is neatly shaped and the Kwid comes with a digital instrument cluster, which is a first for its class. It comes with a elaborate trip computer and fuel economy reading which should help budget car buyers alter their driving style to eke out more efficiency.

The quality of plastics for a car of its price is quite good except for places like the door handles and aircon controls but overall the Kwid doesn’t look like it’s built cheap. There are plenty of storage spaces in the Kwid – two glove boxes, the top one with a bottle holder, two bottle holders in the front door pockets and plenty of scooped up places in the dashboard and in front of the gear lever. The seats are of the foamy, cushiony kind, and well contoured for the front passengers. The headrest is integrated and there’s decent under thigh support. It’s a spacious entry level hatchback, and in terms of boot space, it’s better than a few cars above the segment as well. At 300 litres, you can carry a big suitcase and an overnighter comfortably.

The Kwid has the longest wheelbase in its class at 2423mm, about 60mm more than the Alto and 40mm more than the Eon. It is also much wider than its closest competition and so you get more legroom and shoulder room. The Kwid’s packaging is seriously impressive.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE ;

The 1.0-litre Renault Kwid produces 67 BHP at 5500 RPM and 91 Nm at 4250 RPM. This basically means 14 BHP and 19 Nm more at lower RPMs when compared to the 800cc engine. The added capacity and retuned engine offers strong low end and mid-range punch. The 3-cylinder engine doesn’t feel strained now and easily picks up the pace without letting you put effort. In-gear acceleration is better now and you don’t need to shift more frequently while driving in city traffic. The 5-speed transmission still feels a bit sluggish to use but has well defined gates.

100 km/hr comes up quickly if you upshift a tad before the redline since it doesn’t feel too responsive at the higher end of the rev band. Renault has worked on the NVH levels, which makes it less noisy and it feels more refined now. The more powerful Kwid now feels at home on the highways since you can cruise around 100 km/hr with ease at lower RPMs. The claimed fuel efficiency has gone down a bit to 23.01 km/l since there is a bigger engine under the hood.

DRIVING AND DYNAMICS ;

Truly, the Renault Kwid 2017 impresses in many ways and that includes the ride and handling. It maintains Renault’s legacy of a fantastic ride quality, similar to what we have seen in the Duster and Lodgy as well. The potholes are not much of a bother when you are behind the wheel of the Kwid. Yes, it glides over them. The handling is something unseen in this segment and the Renault Kwid 2017 can put to shame many a cars from higher segments too. The steering is well weighted, not too light or heavy either and the feedback is quite precise.

CONCLUSSION ;

Design is often half the battle won here in the Indian market, and so Renault is off to a good start with the Kwid. It has also armed itself well, with many trump cards like a premium cabin, plenty of space, the best fuel economy, loads of equipment and ride comfort that is class leading. And Renault has got its strategy and pricing right too. The company has been clever to save costs in areas that customers won’t notice or mind, and instead provided features – like that touchscreen – that people really want. The company also claims it will offer the lowest overall ownership cost in its class; an uphill task when you’re up against Maruti. And, with 98 percent localisation of parts, it seems to have nailed the price too. The fully loaded car tested here (the RXT with options) retails for just 3.53 lakh(ex showroom Delhi), which is only around Rs 9000 above the top of the line Maruti Alto VXi. Yes it has its flaws, mainly with the engine, which falls short on refinement and power delivery, and some of the cheaper Kwids aren’t well equipped. Still, all things considered, Renault’s Kwid clearly is a breath of fresh air in this class, and from the look of things, has all the makings of a game changer. It’s deeply desirable, clearly capable and the aggressive price is only the icing on the cake.

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Maruti Suzuki Swift Engine & Safety Features

OVERVIEW ;

Maruti Suzuki Swift is one of the most easily spotted cars running on Indian roads. Launched in 2005, Swift has been here for more than ten years. Like most of the Maruti cars, Swift price is positioned competitively with entry level variant priced at Rs 5.96 lakh and the top-of-the-line variant available at Rs 6.3 lakh. Clearly the most contemporary looking hatch in MSI’s clan until Baleno came Swift has had an easy run amid rivals topping the popularity chart. During its product cycle, Swift has undergone one comprehensive facelift in 2011 followed by a couple of mild overhauls and various limited editions. Prepping to take a leap into the next generation, the new 2017 Maruti Suzuki Swift will receive vital changes to the exterior and interior. Dimensionally, it will be 50mm longer implicating more space inside the cabin. The new Maruti Suzuki Swift will underpin the new global platform used in Baleno and Ignis, implying lighter body as compared to the 3rd gen-model. Launched first in 2005, Maruti Suzuki Swift was a runaway success and its popularity continues in B segment.Check On Road Price of Swift

EXTERIORS AND STYLE ;

The next generation Maruti Swift shares great resemblance with its predecessor, but the new design alterations have added a sporty charm to the vehicle. With its curvy and elegant body, the Swift is definitely one of the most beautiful cars ever seen in its segment. The new Swift looks bigger with extended dimensions, stylish front grill, large headlamps, ORVMs with integrated blinkers, chrome-finished logo and fog lamps. The coloured door handles, thin window glasses, mirror cowls and alloy wheels further enhance its aggressive look. Its rear looks quite refreshing with body-colored bumper and chic LED tail lights. Maruti Swift has all the crunchy features that have made it a game changer in the Indian automotive industry. Exchange your old car for Swift

The mid variants of Maruti Swift are available with 14-inch steel wheels, whereas its top variants are equipped with 15-inch steel wheels, adding extra elegance to this premium hatchback. With an aim to offer comfortable and sporty drive, the new Maruti Swift comes with puncture-resistant tubeless tyres. The 165/ 80 R14 and 185/ 65 R15 are the standard tyre sizes for 14- and 15-inch steel wheels, respectively. The tyres are highly efficient and offer better grip over the rough Indian roads

INTERIORS AND COMFORT ;

Step inside the Swift, and you’d notice the interiors have received a major overhaul. There’s practically nothing that looks similar to the older generation, which we think is a big plus right off the bat. Most importantly, levels of quality have also gone up a notch. Yes, it isn’t in the league of the Hyundai Grand i10, but it does get pretty close.To aid the ‘sporty’ positioning, there’s no trace of a light colour in the cabin. Everything from the dashboard to the upholstery is engulfed in black. To break the monotony, Maruti has cleverly used matte silver accents around the centre-console, the door pads, and the steering. While the all-black theme does look good, it robs the cabin of its sense of space. The dull grey headliner and the black upholstery makes the cabin feel claustrophobic. This is especially prominent in the rear, where the small window amplify the feeling.

The front seats are among the best in the business, and can be adjusted for height, reach and tilt. They have the right amount of cushioning on the side, and there’s ample lower back and underthigh support as well. The steering, sadly, only adjusts for tilt – there’s no reach adjust on offer. That said, the steering is placed at a neutral distance from the dash and you’d rarely have a problem. It is just the right size, and feels nice to hold. In the top-spec variants, it also gets controls for the audio and the calls. Behind the steering lies the updated instrument cluster. It does look nice, and we especially like the silver outline it gets for the speedometer and the tachometer pods. There’s a monochrome MID sandwiched between the two, that reads out information such as the trip efficiency, time and distance to empty over and above the standard trip and odometer.

It scores very high in terms of ergonomics. The positioning of switches, the air-conditioning controls and even the cubby holes is right where you’d want them. The centre-console gets the waterfall theme kickstarted yet again, and houses a 2DIN audio system (with Bluetooth, USB and AUX inputs) and the automatic climate control interface. Air-conditioning works pretty efficiently, and cools the cabin down quickly. One will feel the lack of rear AC vents, though, especially since the all-black cabin doesn’t do much to keep in-cabin heat low.The Swift is a driver-oriented car, and there’s no denying the fact the driver’s seat is the seat to be in. This is made evident the moment you hop onto the rear bench. While Maruti claim an increase of 22mm in legroom, it still isn’t a comfortable place to be in – especially over long distances. The headroom isn’t all that great thanks to the sloping roofline, and the width barely manages to accommodate three abreast.Summing up, the Swift’s cabin is definitely a good place to be in. There’s a good blend of practicality and feel-good creature comforts to make it a rounded hatch for the city.

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE ;

Maruti Suzuki has come under a lot of pressure as newer cars in the segment were boasting of more mileage, thus both the engines had to be re-tuned for improved efficiency. The 1.2-litre K-Series mill now produces 2.7 PS less power, thus is outputs 84.3 PS at 6000 RPM while the torque has increased by 1 Nm to 115 Nm at 4000 RPM. This has been achieved by increasing the compression ratio from 10.0:1 to 11.0:1, the vehicle now returns an ARAI mileage of 20.4 km/l against the old car’s 18.5 km/l. The petrol mill has good mid and top-end performance and loves the redline, the changes made to the powertrain aren’t very apparent when you drive the car as it still moves with the same punchiness as before.

Coming to the famous diesel engine of the Maruti Suzuki Swift, the 1.3-litre Fiat motor, it hasn’t been tuned, thus it generates the same 75 PS at 4000 RPM and 190 Nm at 2000 RPM as before. The company has made tweaks to the ECU while also reducing friction to improve the mileage which is now rated at a stellar 25.2 km/l (the old car was claimed to return 22.9 km/l). The oil burner is fun to drive on the open road but there is considerable low-end lag which makes it difficult to drive the vehicle in stop-go city conditions. But once the turbo spools in full flow, the mid-range punch is extremely satisfying, still not as good as the last generation Swift which gave a kick in the pants feel like no other. Both the petrol and diesel engines are married to a 5-speed manual gearbox and there is still no automatic on offer, not even on the petrol model. Want an automatic only, get the DZire or so is what Maruti feels.

RIDE AND HANDLING ;

The Maruti Swift 2016 is one of the few Suzuki that we pick when it comes to handling. The chassis of this hatchback is responsive and changes directions without much of a hassle. It is agile and it does well around bends. This is one of the strong points of the Swift. This chassis has been built to handle Swift Sport’s power, hence with this engine it does a good job. The ride on the Swift too is composed. It is a bit stiff, but that to improve the handling. The Maruti Swift 2016 certainly has a great package when it comes to the ride and handling aspects. The other strong point for the Swift is its steering wheel. It is light at low speeds and it weighs as you gather momentum.

SAFETY FEATURES ;

For the safety of the passengers inside the new Japanese spec Swift hatchback gets seven airbags, ABS with EBD, Rear defogger, Reverse parking camera with sensors, ESP and Hill Hold Assist (RSt variant), LED DRLs while there is also an Optional Safety Pack (which comprises of Dual Camera Brake Support, Lane Departure Warning, and speed limiter).

CONCLUSSION ;

Overall the newL Swift takes the evolution of the Swift brand to a new level. Everything about the car is more crisp and essentially you get a feeling of being offered a lot more car than before and that is a boon considering the changing market dynamics. In 2005 when MSIL rolled out the Swift it set a benchmark for the premium hatchback segment. Now with competition having grown so much, the Swift was definitely getting old in the tooth, but it possessed immense brand value and had a strong fan following. The new Swift retains those values yet manages to take the game more than just a notch higher.From the looks of it, the new Swift is here to reset the benchmark and the competition might as well start planning their arsenal. With the ability to rule the roost, the only factor that will seal the new Swift’s fate as kingpin of the premium hatchback segment is its pricing. Maruti has been known to price its small cars extremely aggressively and we hope to see that with this car as well.

 

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Datsun GO Plus Features & Gear box

OVERVIEW ;

Nissan revived the Datsun brand after a huge time period and launched the GO entry-level hatchback in India. Unfortunately, the GO did not sell as well as anticipated in the market and recently the vehicle received a lot of flak for performing terribly in the NCAP crash test. Datsun has also developed an MPV based on the GO and with the recent climb in sales that MPVs are witnessing, Datsun seems to be quite optimistic that it will be able to gain decent sales with the GO+. But, the Datsun GO+ competes with some products that have the backing of manufacturers with a huge service network. So how does the GO+ perform? Does it have what it takes to capture the market? A nice drive through Rishikesh, Uttarakhand allows us to test the GO+ and its capabilities. Check Ex Showroom Price of GO +

EXTERIOR AND LOOK

The Datsun Go+ is essentially a larger version of the standard Go. And just as with the latter, the Go+’s styling will not really sweep you off your feet. The large hexagonal grille and chunky headlamps go add a sense of sophistication to the car. Just like with the Go, the Go+ looks more expensive than it actually is with its distinctively muscular bonnet lines. The side profile too isn’t disproportionate and a well defined waist line reminds us of the Mercedes-Benz B-Class.

The rear could have certainly done with a bit more excitement though. A chrome moulding instead of a body coloured one could have easily been incorporated to break up the monotonous tail gate. The extended greenhouse and body structure on the Go+ looks well integrated and reminds us of cars like the first generation Ford Focus Wagon. The small 13-inch wheels though take away most of the hard work that the designers put into the Go+. Not only does the Datsun Go+ look undertyred, the lack of alloy wheels even on the fully loaded version is slightly disappointing. Find best offers on GO+

CABIN AND COMFORT

Except the 3rd row, inside of the GO+ is identical to the hatch sibling. The dash and door panels are of ‘greige’ (mix of grey + beige) colour. Though plastic quality is very basic and just above satisfactory, sturdiness of the panels is a point worth mentioning here.We quite liked the black centre console that looks quite finished and smoother than the rest of the dashboard which carries a grainy texture. Quality of the plastic panels is decent & the GO+ uses the Sunnys-shaped door handles (save for the chrome).The GO+ uses an old school ‘stick’ type locking knobs, which might remind you of the car in which u learnt driving, but admiring them is a bit difficult. Central locking is available on the top-end variant only. The roof feels damn flimsy. There’s a lot of crunching & crinkling when you push the lining a few inches before hitting the roof. The sun visors have been carried over from the GO and don’t get vanity mirrors.

​​​​​​​The Go+‘s wheelbase is longer than most of our hatchbacks. As a result, there’s ample space in both the rows. What we also liked is the decent shoulder and headroom. Ingress and egress is convenient. Corners of the dashboard slope inward, which is a boon for older drivers who sit first and then swing their legs. Though, an adjustable steering would have made it very comfortable.GO+’s front seats are ‘connected’ to each other – like the HM Ambassador. The driver’s chair is a conventional one, it’s the front passenger’s seat that has an extension to fill the gap. Datsun says that area in-between is useful for placing knick knacks & handbags. But we think –it’s not that thoughtful because in case someone tries to sit there(which we’re sure many would), can be risky.The seats feel offers ample comfort and feels more foamy than cushiony. It gets integrated headrests and the seat cushioning remains thin. Knees of the rear occupant can be felt through the seat, which’s annoying on certain occasions.

ENGINE AND GEARBOX

The Datsun GO+ MPV is also powered by the same engine which also does duty on their Go hatchback because Datsun has not yet introduced any other engines in the Indian market yet neither any product. However, it will be interesting to find out whether this three cylinder 1.2 liter engine which returns 68 bhp of peak power and 104 Nm of torque mated to a 5 speed manual transmission will be powerful enough to carry a vehicle with 7 passengers inside it. The 1.2 Liter engine fitted under the hood of the Datsun Go is definitely smooth and refined but after all it is a 3 cylinder engine push it hard and it surely sounds unhappy. Datsun also has plans to introduce an automatic transmission in the near future and a diesel engine which will power both the Go hatch and the Go+ MPV.Beside all this the tiny 13 inch thin tyres and the overall lightweight of the vehicle will contribute towards returning an impressive fuel economy which will definitely impress many in the Indian market specially keeping the soaring petrol prices in mind.

RIDE AND HANDLING

The Datsun GO+ has a really good ride quality and the suspension managed to absorb most bumps very well. The driver as well as the passengers remained quite comfortable on most bad patches of road and the vehicle too remained very composed. At speeds above the ton, the GO+ remains fairly stable but while taking corners or driving a bit quickly through twisties, we did encounter a fair amount of body-roll. In all of these situations, the vehicle did not lose form and never did we feel that it will go out of control. The MPV gets a speed-sensitive electric power steering. The steering is very light and it is devoid of feedback. The lightness comes in useful while driving on crowded roads or while parking and at higher speeds it does weigh up a bit. Handling is quite crisp and this is actually a fun-to-drive car, just let down by a poor choice of tyres. The puny 13-inch Strada tyres offer just average grip and they disappoint big time. It is clear that Nissan is using them just to save costs. An upgrade to 14-inch wheels will really add to the vehicle’s handling characteristics.

SAFETY

Safety is one of the biggest concerns with the Go +. When its younger sibling, the Datsun Go, was put through the Global NCAP crash test, the results were dismal. It scored zero stars and the testing authority claimed that even if the Go were to be tested with airbags, the results would bear no difference. The car’s structure was just so bad. The Go + is similar to the Go in terms of structure and this is where our concerns lie. Datsun had to trade off a features to keep the costs in check and safety seems to have taken the biggest brunt. While the Go + is sold with an optional driver airbag, we highly recommend looking for a safer alternative.

CONCLUSSION

The Datsun GO+ is a compact vehicle with a good engine, great ride and handling and decent fuel economy. It lacks on the safety front and in case of an unfortunate breakdown, it could be hard to locate a Nissan-Datsun service centre. But it is going to be a really cheap 7-seater and could be a great choice for someone who actually wants all those seats and is on a tight budget. For others, who really do not require a 7-seater, there are better options like the Maruti Wagon R and Hyundai i10 available in the market or the Maruti Ertiga and Honda Mobilio if buyers can stretch their budgets. Still, as far as value for money goes, this Datsun is hard to beat.

 

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