The updated Etios Liva can be had with either a 79bhp/104Nm 1.2-litre petrol or a 67bhp/170Nm 1.4-litre diesel engine. For this test, we have the free-revving petrol model that’s paired to a 5-speed maual gearbox.
With decent power and torque figures, the petrol Etios Liva gets off the line well and feels zippy around town. This is certainly helped by the light clutch action and good mid-range punch from the engine. While the latter certainly cannot be accused of being performance focused, it does the job of pottering around town well enough. The 5-speed manual, too, does a good job of slicing through the gears with minimal effort. Even if your daily driving involves spending a lot of time in traffic, you won’t find the Liva to be uncomfortable.
Progress is less impressive once you leave the city and hit highway speeds. The measly output means the Liva doesn’t pull as strongly as you would like, once above triple digit speeds. While the engine itself remains decently smooth if not the smoothest in class, the cabin is slightly on the noisy side. There’s some amount of road noise and wind noise filtering into the cabin - it’s not a concern within the city, but it’s definitely a factor on the highway.
Like the old car, the ride quality is perhaps the strongest suite of the updated Liva. As you would expect, the suspension setup is on the softer side, however, the calibration is such that the Liva never feels overly soft or loose, even over large bumps and imperfections. At highway speeds it does tend to bounce around a bit especially when unladen but again, it’s not a worry at all. Overall, the ride quality is pretty much at the top in this segment.