The Verito offers a lot of value because it offers a lot for very little money. It was born as a Dacia, Renault-Nissan’s budget badge, and sold in India in collaboration with Mahindra as the Logan. A facelift or two later, it was solely a Mahindra product and rebadged the Verito. The Verito has moved upmarket bit by bit, while still managing to keep its price tag at the ‘value’ end of the scale.
With the new Verito Vibe, Mahindra will apply the same funda in the hatchback segment. The uncamouflaged spy pictures of the Vibe are all over the internet and the first thing you notice is that it is not a compact sedan (CS) at all. The new sub-four metervehicle is a big hatchback that looks proportional and hence appealing, unlike few others who took the ‘CS sedan’ route to avail tax benefits.
The Verito Vibe looks very similar to its elder sibling from the front, although there are a few alterations to the headlight console. The spy car also had protective cover around the front grille, it is probably to cover the chrome bits also seen in the sedan. The Vibe also has black roof-rails exactly like the one found on the sedan. The difference between the two cars is most noticeable from the side and the rear. The new car without the three-box design appears like a small wagon from the side angle; the same profile also makes it evident that it has ample boot space. The rear design is bold with the thick tail lamp console and part of the boot-lid acting as spoiler.
A large part of the Verito’s appeal is in its sheer interior volume, and that will remain with the shortened Verito. The interiors of the sedan were refreshed with the facelift in last August and those will continue on the new Vibe. The top-end hatchback is expected to get two-tone interiors with decent quality fit and finish. There is ample space in the front to accommodate full-size adults and just about enough to comfortably seat three on the flat rear-bench. The boot space of the new car is expected to be larger than its competitors and even few entry-level sedans. It is expected to be around 350-litre – that is more than space available in the Swift Dzire.
If all the features from the Verito sedan are offered with the Vibe, then the top-end version will have 2-DIN music system from the Xylo with Aux-in and USB, power window switched on driver-side door, ABS-EBD and driver side airbag. Mahindra might omit the steering and driver seat height adjustment as they are missing from the sedan.
Mahindra may launch the new Verito Vibe as diesel only model. The company does not have an apt petrol engine – less than 1200cc, to avail tax benefits and might hence skip the plans to offer a gasoline version. The diesel model will be powered by the Renault’s 1.5-litre K9K unit churning out 65bhp and 160Nm of torque. The front-wheel-drive setup will continue and hopefully the great ride and acceptable handling will also remain untouched. The fuel efficiency might also improve a bit from 21kpl of the sedan.
The Verito Vibe is expected to start at around Rs 4.5 lakh. At that price point it will compete with the Indica Vista, Ford Figo, Maruti Swift, Nissan Micra and others in the B-Segment. The top-end version of the Verito Vibe diesel is expected to cost around Rs 6.5 lakh.