The sedan is the segment that shouts elegance and royalty. But with the passing years, this segment has experienced a lot of downfalls. They are the SUVs that currently rule the roads not just in India but also in the International market. Let’s focus on the domestic market for now.
For you to know, a sedan is a word given to several types of cars, so let’s give them a specific name. The smallest of the lot is the compact sedans that measure less than 4m in length. Then comes the D-Segment sedans that do offer some luxury on the inside. Coming to the C-segment sedans, these sit somewhere between the compact sedans and the D-segment sedans.
But today we focus on the D-segment sedans, that are on the verge of extinction. Well, the D-segment sedan has cars like Hyundai Elantra, Toyota Corolla and Skoda Octavia. Why on the verge of disappearance? well, as of now, there only exists Hyundai Elantra and Honda Civic in this segment. But what went wrong?
Let’s get straight into the important bit, money. The D-segment sedans sit a notch above the C-segment, so obviously they’ll be expensive. Also, the price is not justified. For instance, Hyundai Verna range ends at around 16 lakhs (ex-Showroom) whereas the Elantra starts at around 17.6 lakhs and both have the same diesel engine. It’s not worth extending the budget, more on that below.
More price means bigger all-round dimensions. This opens up more space, especially legroom, on the inside, for both the front as well as the rear row of seats. And more space translates to better space management and airy cabin. But the question comes, is it worth upgrade, as the SUV for a less price, get you similar cabin space? At times, bigger SUVs are also capable of carrying 2 extra people for the same price.
Power and Efficiency
Solely judging a car or a whole segment on power is not justifiable. So, in the automobile world, there is a term known as the power to weight ratio. This is the measure of power over a ton of weight. That said, D-segment sedans are bigger and so are heavier. But the gains on the engine when compared to the C-segment sedans is not that much. So, the smaller sedans offer better power to weight ratio and efficiency.
On the other hand, for almost the same price, SUVs offer more power and a better power to weight ratio.
When it comes to safety, size does matter and on the roads, these are the SUVs those have an upper hand (well, sort of). Talking about the frontal impact they are the SUV those are likely gonna survive the crash and keep the occupants safe.
Sedans are more planted on the road than SUVs, agreed. But be it any sedan, this is possible because of a stiff suspension and this type of suspension is more about driving and less about comfort. So, this is where the softly sprung suspension offers better comfort in SUV. For many, the high seating position also is a boon.
In the end, the D-Segment sedans sit in a very weird bracket where they are the jack of all trades but a master of none. And they do it by costing significantly more than the C-segment sedans.
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For you to know here are the D-Segment sedans those are dangerously close to leaving or have already left the Indian shores.
Engine 1999cc Naturally Aspirated (Petrol)
1493cc CRDi (Diesel) Transmission 6-speed automatic & 6-speed manual Power 152ps @ 6200rpm 115ps @ 4000rpm Torque 192Nm @ 4000rpm 250Nm @ 1500 – 2750 rpm
The one that once came with a powerful engine with a value for money package. But, like it’s the previous model, Hyundai Elantra gets a 2.0 -litre naturally aspirated petrol engine and a 1.5-litre diesel engine that is same as the Hyundai Verna. Also, Creta with less price gets you more features and away more powerful engine.
Engine 1799cc Naturally Aspirated (Petrol)
1597cc (Diesel) Transmission 7-Step CVT (Automatic) 6-Speed MT Power 140ps @ 6500rpm 118bhp @ 4000rpm Torque 174Nm @ 4300rpm 300Nm @ 2000 rpm
The Japanese carmaker Honda claimed to have brought back the Legend, but is it really back? Honda Civic starts at 18 lakhs (ex-Showroom) and sure has grown in size a little. But under the hood, it gets the same 1.8-litre petrol engine with a slight bump in power. So, the price you are willing to shed is not at all justified when you can get a better engine and interior space for the same price. Also, more features to add a few.
Toyota Corolla Altis
Engine 1798cc naturally aspirated petrol Transmission 6-Speed MT / 7-Step CVT 7-Power 140ps @ 6400 rpm Torque 173Nm @ 4000rpm
One of the overpriced cars of the D-segment sedans was the Toyota Corolla. Well, Corolla is one car that is not yet BS6 compliant and is not in the showroom for one to buy. Neither do we know when it’ll be available or if at all it will be sold in the Indian market in the future. But talking about the specs, firstly this was available only in petrol, in addition, this 18+ lakh car had a 1.8-litre engine that only produced 140ps.
Engine 1798cc Turbo petrol (TSI) Transmission 7-Speed DSG Power 180ps @ 5100–6200 Torque 250Nm @1250-5000 Rpm
Octavia RS245 is the only Skoda Octavia available in the Indian market as of now and this D-segment sedan in its own league and is focused to a specific set of people. That said, the convention, not sporty Skoda Octavia is not available in the showrooms as of now. But when it was there, the cost to features and power ratio was high, just like a typical D-Segment sedan.