Volkswagen Ameo Overview
It was a little surprising to find out that the VW Ameo – a late entrant in the super-competitive compact sedan segment – would be entering the market with one arm tied behind its back. It was launched with only a single engine and gearbox option – the 75hp 1.2-litre MPI with a five-speed manual. In fact, the engine was the weakest point in what turned out to be an otherwise rather excellent car.
We knew a diesel variant would be introduced by the festive season, and the wait appears to have been worth it, as it’s an upgraded version of the 1.5-litre, four-cylinder TDI motor we’ve already tried in the Vento, Polo and Skoda Rapid. It’s got 5hp more power and the same 250Nm of torque and apart from the manual, you can also have it with a seven-speed dual-clutch automatic gearbox. This could just be what it takes to find the Volkswagen Ameo some serious fans.
Volkswagen Ameo Design
Compact sedans have never looked extraordinarily beautiful. The Ameo shares its front face with the Polo and Vento and the design looks timeless as ever. The smoked headlamps, detailed bumper and grille are all reminiscent of Volkswagen’s typical styling philosophy. The Ameo also gets static cornering lights up front and it is the first in its segment to get this feature. Volkswagen is also offering a new blue shade with this compact sedan. The Ameo has a similar wheelbase as the Polo but the front fenders are slightly redesigned.
The side profile is again clean and the short boot overhang looks kind of quirky. The boot itself has been integrated very neatly and it doesn’t look like a stick-on job at all, but most compact sedans look weird from certain angles and the Ameo is no different. The tail lights carry some inspiration from the Polo and Vento’s lights while the boot lid and bumper get a flat design, thus making the Ameo sit comfortably under the 4-metre mark.
Volkswagen Ameo Cabin
On the inside, the Ameo is offering high quality interiors. The fit and finish on the inside is good and even the look and feel of the materials. The cabin feels a bit outdated in design. In terms of features, it gets most of it. There is a touchscreen system, reverse parking camera, Apple Car Play and a lot more features. Dual airbags and ABS is a standard feature across all variants.
The front seats are large and comfortable too. The second row gets tight on knee room and this is a drawback considering most of the competition. Tall people might not be very comfortable at the rear. For this reason, the Ameo is a good option to buy for those who drive themselves. There is a rear AC vent in the Ameo and a bottle holder as well. The boot isn’t the largest, but the rear seats fold and this is a unique feature for a compact sedan.
Volkswagen Ameo Engine
The Volkswagen Ameo has been launched with only the 1.2-litre, 3-cylinder, MPI petrol engine. This engine produces 75 PS of power and 110 Nm of torque and it comes mated to a 5-speed transmission. The German is not offering the 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine from the Polo and Vento in the Ameo yet. Also, the Ameo will be getting a 1.5-litre TDI diesel engine mated to 5-speed manual and 6-speed DSG transmissions but this oil-burner will be launched only during the festive season. Volkswagen is offering the Ameo with a petrol engine initially just to get sales going. To know more info on Volkswagen Ameo check Kmindia
Talking about the MPI engine, it comes across as a major disappointment because it has a very poor low-end and mid-range. In fact, the engine doesn’t impress even at the higher spectrum of the RPM range. City drivability is just about average and this mill is just not meant for highway driving. Redline comes in early at 6000 RPM. To keep the car moving, you always need to keep the engine on the boil. The engine also gets very vocal and at higher RPMs, a lot of noise filters inside the cabin. 100 km/hr comes up in 3rd gear while in top gear, the Ameo touches the ton at 2900 RPM.
If you’re looking for performance, you better stay away from the Ameo because the engine feels the most inferior in its segment which consists of the Maruti Swift DZire, Tata Zest, Honda Amaze, Hyundai Xcent and Ford Figo Aspire. Gear shifts are pretty slick though but the MPI mill doesn’t impress even in terms of fuel efficiency. The ARAI-rating of 17.83 km/l is also the lowest in its segment. We are really waiting for the updated diesel engine to arrive because it will be a blast to drive with 108 PS of power.
Volkswagen Ameo Riding
The DSG is superb at being an automatic though. It’s smooth, clever and quick and makes matters so much more convenient in traffic. It’s hugely better than the AMT gearboxes you get in the Maruti Dzire and Tata Zest, but that does come at a premium. Request Volkswagen Ameo Test Drive.
Finally, VW does seem to have fiddled with the suspension to help support the bigger, heavier diesel engine. It’s been stiffened up and it is for the better. Where the petrol car rode well at low speeds, its overly soft setup meant it was a bit too bouncy and rolly when you went faster. Not anymore. The diesel car feels much better tied down, and yet absorbs bumps pretty well. In fact, we’d say it has a good chance of being the best riding car in its class. The steering is light and accurate but not quick or sharp enough to make you want to corner the Ameo hard, so while competent, it does shy away from being a fun handling car.
Volkswagen Ameo Safety
In terms of safety features, the Volkswagen Ameo comes with dual front airbags and ABS as standard fitment on all variants which is really impressive. The compact sedan also gets other stuff like rain-sensing wipers and static cornering lights which are good to have. Volkswagen has a decent service network across India but their service quality standards aren’t really all that high and owners are often left wanting for more, rather better quality levels.
Volkswagen Ameo Price in Hyderabad
Volkswagen Ameo On-Road Price in Hyderabad ranges from 6,71,832 to 11,74,273 for variants Ameo Anniversary Edition Diesel and Ameo 1.5 L TDI Diesel Highline Plus AT respectively. Volkswagen Ameo is available in 14 variants and 5 colours. Below are details of Volkswagen Ameo variants price in Hyderabad. View offers on Volkswagen Ameo at Autozhop.
Volkswagen Ameo Verdict
Apart from the car itself, what really impressed us about the petrol Ameo was that it was priced competitively, bucking VW’s tradition of premium pricing and even undercutting a few key rivals. They’ve managed to do it again with the diesel car, which too is priced in the upper middle of the segment. The only exception is the DSG Automatic, which costs a fair bit more than the equivalent Tata Zest and Maruti Dzire, both of which use cheaper AMT gearboxes. Check for SBI car loan at Fincarz.
The incredibly punchy diesel motor is satisfying to drive and fixes our main criticism of the Ameo – the weak petrol engine. It makes for a superb owner-driven car, but as a family vehicle it falls a little short of rivals because of its relatively small boot and low rear seat space. If your use for these two things is minimal, however, you’ll find the Ameo TDI is a well-built, well-appointed and well-equipped compact sedan that’s now, finally, nice to drive too.