Renault India is preparing to launch a more powerful version of the Kwid, a car that has kept the sales counter ticking for the French automaker. Dubbed Kwid 1.0 SCe, this all new version is powered by a new 1-litre engine that guarantees a more spirited drive compared to the regular 800cc model. With the introduction of a bigger engine, the Kwid now not only competes with the Alto 800 and the Eon, but also their more powerful siblings i.e. the Alto K10 and the Eon 1.0. Here’s how the new boy stacks up against its rivals in the 1-litre small car space.
Virtually, the Kwid 1.0 remains unchanged albeit with a couple of upgrades to differentiate it from the 800cc model. In fact, the only changes to the exterior are the silver housings for the wing mirrors and chequered decals on the sides. Dimension wise, the Kwid is 3679mm in length, 1579mm in width and 1478mm in height. Even the 2422mm wheelbase is the same although the kerb weight has gone by around 40kg to 699kg. In comparison, the Kwid is longer and wider than both Alto K10 and Eon 1.0. The latter however, being a tall boy design, sits higher off the ground than the Kwid.
Engine and gearbox
Under the hood of the Kwid 1.0 there’s a new 999cc, three-cylinder engine and a 5-speed manual from the 800cc model. It makes 68hp at 5,500rpm and 91Nm of torque at 4,250rpm. These numbers are significantly higher than that of the 800cc Kwid which makes 54hp and 72Nm. The Alto K10, on the other hand, mates a 998cc three cylinder unit and a 5-speeder. It develops 67bhp at 6,000rpm and 90Nm at 3,500rpm while the 998cc Kappa unit in the Eon puts out 68bhp at 6,200rpm and 94Nm at 3500rpm. Now because the Kwid is so much lighter than the other two, it’s got the highest power to weight ratio of 97bhp per tonne. For those looking for the convenience of an automatic, Renault India will launch an AMT version of the Kwid 1.0 later this year.
Being an entry-level car, one cannot expect much from the Kwid, however, Renault is still offering a couple of really impressive features like the big touchscreen infotainment system with navigation and a well detailed instrument cluster. The car also gets a driver-side airbag as an option. In comparison, the Eon 1.0 gets dual-tone interiors, 2-din audio system with USB connectivity and internally adjustable mirrors. Lastly, the Alto K10 also gets dual-tone interiors, front fog lamps and a driver-side airbag.
Prices for the Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 range between Rs 3.49 lakh and Rs 4.39 lakh (ex-showroom, Mumbai), depending on the trim and fuel type. Hyundai, meanwhile, sells the Eon 1.0 in two trim levels priced between Rs 4.59 lakh and Rs 4.70 lakh ex-showroom. As for the Kwid 1.0, Renault is expected to price it really competitively though we would like to add that the company will launch it only in the top-spec RxT variant, meaning ex-showroom prices should be around Rs 4.40 to 4.50 lakh mark.