The updated S-Cross gets a premium look with shiny chrome, the interior quality feels great by Maruti standards and it comes with a hassle-free Maruti after sales service and wide network, says Indian automobile website MotorBeam.com.
The country's largest carmaker has tried its stint in the premium car space and products like the Kizashi and Vitara (not the Brezza) weren't that well received.
Maruti launched the S-Cross (it's flagship car) back in 2015 and the Vitara Brezza in 2016.
While the Brezza was an instant hit, the S-Cross, well, wasn't as big a hit as the Brezza.
The S-Cross sells approximately 2000+ units a month and two years later, Maruti has given it a much-needed facelift.
The front end has been completely redesigned.
You get a new vertically slotted chrome grille, redesigned LED headlamps with LED DRLs and of-course a redesigned bumper that makes the car look aggressive.
The chiseled bonnet adds some muscle to the car's front fascia.
Come to the side, save for the new 16-inch dual-tone alloy wheels, there are barely any other changes done.
The black cladding and the faux skid plates continue to feature on the side profile.
The rear profile of the facelifted S-Cross is identical to the previous car except for the redesigned LED tail-lights.
Interior changes include a new instrument cluster with new dials, an updated SmartPlay touchscreen infotainment system, soft-touch materials and piano black and satin chrome finishes on the centre console.
Overall, the interior of the S-Cross facelift is roomy, comfortable and does feel plush and premium.
If we really had to name some negatives, it has to be the switches on the door pads that are carried over from cheaper Marutis and the lack of a rear AC vent.
Leather seats are offered on the range topping Alpha trim.
The seats themselves are comfortable and nicely bolstered.
There is acres of legroom for rear seat passengers, headroom and under-thigh support are good too.
The crossover comes feature-loaded. You get climate control, automatic headlamps, automatic wipers, rear parking camera, infotainment system with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity and push-button start.
Boot space is the same as before at 375-litres.
Maruti has discontinued the 1.6-litre diesel motor and all you get now is a 1.3-litre diesel which we're all familiar with.
However, Maruti has added a mild hybrid system (SHVS) to the facelifted S-Cross.
The 1.3-litre diesel makes 89 HP of power and 200 Nm of torque.
The car drives just like the older S-Cross, but this being a Maruti and benefitting from the smart hybrid system, returns better fuel efficiency.
Maruti claims a boost in the mileage from 23.65 km/l to 25.1 km/l.
Due to low-end lag, one needs to work the gearbox a bit.
However, there is a surge of torque at your disposal past 2000 RPM after which the crossover feels at home until 5300 RPM.
NVH levels are quite impressive, the cabin is well insulated and you don’t get to hear much of the diesel clatter.
Maruti offers no automatic option and no petrol engine option too. The 5-speed gearbox offers short throws and fantastic feedback.
The ride quality is fantastic and the car absorbs most of the bumps with ease.
The chassis is very well balanced and feels mature to drive.
The handling is very predictable and the steering provides consistent feedback with minimal body roll.
The S-Cross due to the lower height drives more like a hatchback than an SUV.
Maruti offers dual airbags, ABS with EBD and ISOFIX child seat mounts as standard across all variants of the new S-Cross.
The top trims could have done with side and curtain airbags though.
Maruti is known to have a service centre even in the remotest places of India, so on the after-sales service front, Maruti owners are assured of peace of mind.
The facelifted S-Cross looks premium and even feels premium from the inside.
However, the lack of a petrol engine and an automatic variant for the current diesel motor might upset some of the buyers.
The hybrid technology has made the crossover more fuel-efficient though.
The cabin is practical and overall Maruti has made the S-Cross a tad more desirable than its previous version.