In a segment, which, everyone says, is dominated by the Honda City and Maruti Ciaz, the Hyundai Verna enjoys the unique advantage of timing. Every new generation comes across as a fresh choice for those looking for a midsize sedan when its biggest opponents are actually halfway through their product cycle and receiving facelifts. And, if that wasn’t a huge advantage in itself, Hyundai offers so much more equipment, raising the expectations in the segment and making the competition look less valuable. The earlier fluidic Verna got huge acceptance when it was launched six years ago, competing with the previous generation of the City. The new one, they hope, will be even better than that.
Here, we have the fifth generation of the Verna, which is built on a new platform which will spawn more cars in the future. It has grown substantially and is now 65mm longer, 29mm wider, although the height remains the same. The wheelbase has increased 30mm; it looks more like a shrunken Elantra now. It has become more aerodynamic too with Cd of 0.308. We expected India to get the better looking China-spec car, but this is more in line with the Hyundai line-up we have. The front end has the now familiar ‘cascading grille’ we first saw in the Xcent and Elantra. The large headlamps are well integrated into the shut lines for a cleaner look. The side profile is quite similar to the old car, but with tighter lines all around. The 16-inch wheels are of a nice design, but the overall size of the car makes them look smaller. The rear looks like a coupe, with very sharp-looking tail lamps that extend all the way to the rear fenders. The rear bumper has a black accent that doubles up as an edge giving definition to it.