Most fun-to-drive small cars under Rs 10 lakh in India

4th Jan 2019 11:25 am

Love to drive? These are the hatchbacks that deliver the most thrills for under Rs 10 lakh.

1. Fiat Abarth Punto

Fiat Abarth Punto

Small turbo-petrol with big power? Check. Able chassis? Check. Hydraulic steering? Check. The Abarth Punto is the affordable hot hatch we’ve always wanted. Its 145hp, 1.4-litre turbo-petrol engine is an absolute firecracker, and what elevates the experience is the way the Punto lights up in the corners. It’s far from perfect in other areas, but true petrolheads are sure to see the Abarth as flawed but fabulous.
Abarth Punto price: Rs 9.67 lakh

2. Tata Tiago JTP

Tata Tiago JTP

Thanks to a very attractive price tag and a 114hp, 1.2-litre turbo-petrol engine, the hotter version of Tata’s Tiago hatchback is for a keen driver on a budget. Equipped an optimised suspension setup and fatter rubber, the Tiago JTP is a car made for enthusiasts. The added dynamism hasn’t come at the cost of ride comfort either. A better sounding exhaust note would have completed what is otherwise a compelling budget performance buy.
Tiago JTP price: Rs 6.39 lakh

3. Ford Freestyle 1.5D

Fiat Abarth Punto

From behind the wheel you wouldn’t be able to tell that Ford’s new Figo-based Freestyle cross-hatch sits on a raised suspension. It’s keen to turn in and balanced, and the 190mm ground clearance and suspension’s ability to smoothen out bumps mean you can make the most of the handling package even when the roads are far from perfect. The peppy diesel engine completes the package.
Freestyle diesel prices: 
1.5 Ambiente          Rs 6.18 lakh
1.5 Trend                  Rs 6.99 lakh
1.5 Titanium            Rs 7.48 lakh
1.5 Titanium+          Rs 7.93 lakh

4. Ford Figo 1.5D Sports Edition

Ford Figo S

The Ford Figo Sports Edition is about so much more than its rear spoiler and blacked-out detailing. This version’s larger wheels, chunkier tyres and tweaked suspension make it great fun to drive. Opt for the peppy 100hp/215Nm, 1.5-litre diesel and you’ll also experience a small diesel engine done right. This is a budget hatchback that carries the ‘Sport’ suffix with aplomb.
Figo Sports Edition diesel price: Rs 7.84 lakh

5. Maruti Suzuki Baleno RS

Maruti Baleno RS

The souped-up Maruti Suzuki Baleno, if you please, may be lacking in outright numbers – its 1-litre turbo-petrol engine makes 102hp and 150Nm. But factor in its sub 1-tonne weight and you’ll know why the Baleno RS is as brisk as it is. Still, it isn’t quite an all-round entertainer. The numb steering, in particular, lets the package down. What the Baleno RS does do well is blend practicality and fun in one package.
Baleno RS price: Rs 8.47 lakh

Prices are ex-showroom, Delhi as on January 4, 2019.

Also see:

2017 Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Abarth Punto comparison video

2018 Tata Tiago JTP vs Maruti Suzuki Baleno RS: Specifications comparison

Best diesel SUVs under Rs 10 lakh in India

Best diesel-automatic seven-seat SUVs under Rs 35 lakh

Most fun-to-drive small cars under Rs 10 lakh in India

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