Both the Brezza and Nexon get the same motors found in their manual gearbox versions. So it’s the 90bhp/200Nm, 1.3-litre diesel that powers the Brezza with a five-speed AMT, and the Nexon gets its drive from the 1.5-litre diesel with a six-speed AMT that pumps out 108bhp/260Nm. In terms of sheer refinement, the Tata wins hands down since the Brezza’s ageing motor sounds so loud and harsh most of the time.
Now, getting off the line is more like a leap in the Brezza. And you eventually learn not to let go of the brake pedal completely, especially in traffic. The Nexon’s creep function, in comparison, is a lot more predictable. Furthermore, straight off the mark the Tata literally shows-off its 18bhp/60Nm advantage. There’s more grunt and it pulls considerably stronger than the Brezza, which runs out of breath faster.
Our VBox figures confirmed that the Nexon was able to gather speed with a minimum of fuss; 0-100kmph was recorded in just 14.71 seconds while the Brezza took all of 16.78 seconds. Although both cars aren’t far apart in terms of the 20-80kmph and 40-100kmph drivability tests, the Nexon is still the quicker one in kick-down situations. And, this definitely makes it swifter while overtaking.
Make no mistake, the Maruti’s low-end grunt suffices when it comes to basic runabouts. But any enthusiastic throttle input simply makes it annoyingly jerky. And, this is due to the AMT gearbox’s shift lag that virtually rocks you back and forth. Although the Nexon’s AMT gearbox does give away some shift lag too, it isn’t as prominent and doesn’t intrude as much while driving.
On a personal note, the key with AMTs in general is to hold the revs when the gearbox is shifting, and get on the throttle steadily. Or, one could also just stick to the manual tip-tronic shifting (like we did). Also, what adds to the Nexon’s versatility, is that you can tone the power output by toggling between Eco, City and Sport drive modes unlike the Brezza. Eco mode shunts the power output in the interest of boosting fuel efficiency, and City mode offers a fair balance of both City and Eco modes.