Today I got a chance to visit the Hyundai Showroom to take a look at the Creta, their newly launched mini SUV. As you would already be knowing by now this big fella is making headlines all over India as the latest on the block to demolish all other SUVs on the market (which includes Ford Ecosport, Duster, Scorpio, XUV and also the not yet launched S-Cross from Maruti).
Will the Creta have enough under its belt to take away the throne from the others? Looks? Performance? Comfort? Space? Read on.
There was no big fanfare about the Creta and as I entered the showroom, there it was in full glory in Cherry Red colour. I have been reading all about Creta in the last one month and I must tell you that I share the same opinion as the others when it comes to looks. No amount of photographs will be enough to explain the real perspective of a human mind unless you look at the car in person.
The design is brilliant. Initially I thought that the grill in the front would jut out just too much to make it bulky as seen in many of the reviewers photos. But you know what? Not at all. I mean really. As is the case with hyundai they have created an SUV with a massive appearance. It will really have some presence on the road. You need to see it to beleive it.
The macho front grill, the beautiful fog lamps, the triangle shaped bright orange indicators, and the imposing headlamps all of these add value to the overall body. The side profile is similar so XUV but a bit more sober and lends very well to the overall character of the car. Though Korean in nature the unmistakable thud while closing the doors is a bit reassuring. No wonder then that this car apparently has very high C-NCAP ratings.
The whole design begins to rise towards the rear ending a Santa Fe like tail lamp cluster which bodes very well to complete the muscular look. In terms of looks and styling Hyundai have a winner compared to the Duster. It even beats the Ford Ecosport by a small margin in my opinion. Somehow the XUV rear end looks very heavy and not connected to the frontal portions and side profiles. The cheetah inspiration has gone a bit too far. Hyundai have kept it simple and copying the Santa Fe has worked wonders for Creta.
Enough said about the front. I got into all the seats one by one. First and foremost, I did find that there was ample thigh support in all seats. Maybe some reports might be biased on this count, but I found the seats to be pretty well made and very cozy and comfortable. Hyundai has the bad habit of placing seats so deep that even the driver cannot see any part of the car and has to drive by assumptions. But somehow in Creta the seat height is better than in a say i-20 which means you can now see the road better if not the bonnet. Having said that, the rear bench has very generous leg room even for a person my height (5’10”). And that when my own comfortable position is adjusted on the drivers seat. To give you a perspective I can make a young kid of 1-2 years stand in front of me on rear seat. Thats the amount of space available. Rest assured each and every journey will be more than satisfying on this car.
The front row seats have good cushioning, good grip and engulf you well enough to keep you cocooned. I am somehow not a big fan of vertical aircon vents, and this disappoints me with Creta. But as such the looks dont appear spoilt with this dashboard design. There are enough cubby holes for all your knick knacks. And its obviously a hyundai. So this is expected. The steering is well architected, with nicely placed controls. The driver door has rest of all the controls which make it easy to use. I specifically like the mirror adjust angled towards the driver on the door, which is really a thought out placement.
The stereo system with all functions perhaps will be available only in the top end model as defined in the brochure here. The prices on road in Bangalore vary between 11.5 lakhs and 17+ lakhs which is very steep for whats on offer. Take a look at it below
Overall the car also has ample boot space, and passenger space which is its defining point. I have not yet got a chance to drive this far enough to make a conclusion, but I do not see why it can give other SUVs some nightmares.
Until I drive the SUV more and find out its bits and pieces which are of interest, I will leave you with some stunning pictures of what Hyundai has created for the Indian market. I am more than sure this will set their sales charts on fire.