The Hyundai Creta is a mass market favourite SUV being lapped up by Indians faster than Hyundai can produce them. The car has found many homes in the country even though it has been priced at a premium. Thus the folks at MotorBeam decided to induct the car into their long term fleet and understand what exactly makes people fall in love with this vehicle so easily.
The factors which actually work in the favour of the Hyundai Creta is that it has no real competition as such.
The Renault Duster is crude and utilitarian, the Ford EcoSport is small and the Mahindra XUV500 is too big for Indian cities and overall not as polished as the Creta.
The attention to detail on the design, right from the DRL headlights to the lines running across the side and the diamond cut alloy wheels, all give it modern SUV appeal.
As soon as the vehicle arrived, we have been using it in the city with occasional highway trips.
Talking of trips, the most time a person spends is looking at the interiors of the car and we are happy to report that the Creta does not disappoint one bit.
Sure some people would say that it is bland and a little boring, but the important stuff such as the ergonomics and the equipment levels are more than adequate.
Our tester which has been driven hard and used with little care, still has no signs of wear and tear on the interior.
Combined with a good enough infotainment system, this Hyundai aptly makes sense to both the heart and mind of the buyer.
Coming to the heart of the vehicle, the Hyundai Creta is powered by the 1.6-litre diesel mill taken from the Verna sedan and it produces just enough amount of power to putter around town without any worry in the world. The real quality of the engine is the refinement and unbelievable levels of NVH for an oil burner.
The powerplant has more than enough punch for driving on the highway and the 6-speed manual gearbox is smooth to operate with the clutch being light.
If you want to get quick overtakes done, just downshift and the CRDi mill won’t disappoint. But in the city, there is some lag to deal with, although one gets used to it with time.
The Achilles heel of cars with the slanted H has always been the ride and handling characteristics.
The Creta is more sure-footed than previous cars from the Korean firm. Ride quality is good, there is no bouncy feel and the pothole ridden Mumbai roads aren’t as bad in the Creta as they are in other cars.
At the same time, the steering is much better weighted than other Hyundai cars but still lacks feel, especially as speeds build up.
We were able to extract a respectable 12 km/l and 15 km/l of fuel efficiency in the city and highway respectively.
The Hyundai Creta is an unmistakable urban SUV/Soft-roader/Crossover which is completely honest about its lack of any kind of rough-road wading capacity.
Where the vehicle actually becomes an absolute champion is when being used for maneuvering the urban concrete jungle like a lion.
Just look at the thing - the length is just right, the width is just right, it rides higher but not very much, it has a big grille and high window line, but at the same time, drives as smooth as the Elite i20 on whose platform the vehicle is actually based.
The styling, the stance, the quality of materials, all combine into a package which somehow makes giving Rs 200,000-300,000 extra for the Creta totally justifiable.