GOOD FOR Comfortable ride, practical, plenty of features
LOOK OUT FOR Interior trim wear, electronics
The Maruti Suzuki Ignis divided opinion when it launched in 2017. The styling wasn’t liked by everybody and while some thought it gawky, others loved it. Contrary to conventional hatchbacks that have curves and simple lines, the Ignis is edgy, funky and has been designed for the youth. That said, this boxy hatchback is excellent on practicality too. The tall-boy design means there’s a good amount of cabin space and passengers at the rear have ample headroom as well.
Then there is the interior, which again, like the exterior, is quite funky and cool. The touchscreen system, which you only get on the top-spec Alpha trim, is docked in the centre; under this is the climate control cluster that imitates a portable Bluetooth speaker and looks very modern. The instrument cluster is sharp and sporty, and the body-hugging soft seats are impressive too.
In terms of features, you get plenty, should you find a top-spec ‘Alpha’ trim. LED projector headlamps, 15-inch alloy wheels, SmartPlay system with Apple and Android connectivity, automatic climate control, rear parking camera with sensors, and dual front airbags with ABS and EBD are all standard on this trim.
Choices of engines on offer comprise the 1.2-litre petrol and the now-discontinued 1.3-litre diesel; even though the diesel unit is tried and tested, we’d recommend the petrol for its peppy nature and free-revving ability, which make for a much better driving experience. The Ignis is a reliable car overall, so finding one in good nick isn’t too hard. However, there are a few recommended minor checks. Check if the power-window switches are functional, as some owners have reported failures of the same. Then there is the touchscreen, which is otherwise slick to use but, in some cars, has been known to freeze and have a lag in performance. Also, some plastic bits, especially the switches on the climate control pod, tend to break if used roughly, so make sure they are okay. Lastly, check the underbody and the exterior as the flared wheel arches are easy to scratch and dent.
Maintaining the Ignis is like any other Maruti; service and aftersales are inexpensive. Fuel-efficiency wise, you can expect the Ignis to average around 15kpl between city and highway runs. If you can source an AMT, know that there will be a slight drop in efficiency, but it’s big on convenience, especially for those who frequent the everyday peak-hour traffic in cities. Overall, the Ignis is a well-sorted hatchback that is hugely practical, scores well on comfort and – in its top-spec Alpha guise – is feature-rich too. If you can live with the styling, this is one hatchback that will surely serve you well.
HOW TO GET ONE IN YOUR GARAGE
Make sure the switches and buttons are in working condition. Power-window switches tend to malfunction.
Some plastic trim around the lower dash tends to wear and fall apart. Check the climate control switches as they too tend to break off.
SmartPlay works well, but there have been reports of it freezing and restarting.
Also worth knowing
The Ignis is also available with an AMT gearbox so make sure you check if it is working well. While on a test drive check for delay in shifts and if it struggles to do hill starts. The gearbox is reliable but if problematic, could result in a big repair bill.
How much to spend
Rs 4-4.5 lakh
The Ignis is just over two years old now so expect prices to be around Rs 4-4.5 lakhs. Some asking prices are higher, depending on trim level and mileage, but spend no more than Rs 4.5 lakh, as there isn’t a soaring demand for the car. AMT models command a slightly higher premium. Be sure to check Maruti’s own True Value used car dealership for a