My previous long-termer was the Mahindra Verito, and I kept that for a solid four years. But now my daily ride has been scaled down to a Kwid, and while I do miss the ride comfort and roominess of the Verito, the lightness of this car has come as a welcome change.
The Kwid feels light on the whole – especially its steering, which is a boon in traffic – and its compactness allows me to navigate through and park in tight spots. The engine also does a great job of puttering about in lower gears. The gearing in first is especially great; I can step off the pedal at 5kph and the engine won’t stall. At higher highway speeds, which I carry regularly, the engine is smooth and silent when cruising in fifth and stability is decent too, but it is here that the aforementioned lightness becomes an issue. It doesn’t have that heavy, planted feel, and considering that I’ve just made the transition from a Verito, this shortcoming is quite magnified.
On the flip side, however, it offers great fuel efficiency. I have managed roughly 15kpl in the city, while my highway numbers have gone as high as 22.17kpl. We’ve raved about the touchscreen infotainment system before and that’s still our favourite feature. It’s fairly simple and intuitive to use, and taking calls hands-free has simplified my life quite a bit.
That said, I do have a few complaints. Most of my time with the Kwid has been in the monsoon, and when the rain comes down, visibility becomes an issue. The single front wiper leaves a roughly 5-inch-wide part of the windscreen unwiped on the driver’s side, which, coupled with the thick A-pillar, really compromises visibility. And at the back, visibility goes for an absolute toss because of the absence of a rear wiper; Renault should really consider giving one at least on the top-spec Kwid. Additionally, the turning circle isn’t very good, especially for a small car like this.
But all in all, things are going very well between the Kwid and I. It’s been a breeze driving this car, especially in traffic, and the good fuel economy means it’s been easy on the pocket too. Now that the rains are more or less gone, the visibility problems I faced will be rendered redundant and all should be rainbows and sunshine.