What is the best way to silence your haters? By proving them wrong? Or by simply making them look like a fool? To bring it back to automotive terms, the Hyundai Creta was launched in late 2015. Everyone was regarding it as extremely overpriced or a boat. But then these were the opinions of the people who had never driven one… Until one hater here spent a day with it. The Creta might be on to something here…
So when I got the keys (or keyfob in this case), I just stood there in awe. Whatever said and done, the Creta is a stunning machine to look at. The top model, here that I have with me , has been equipped with diamond cut 17” rims, DRLs, chrome door handles, the works. And add it all together and it makes the Creta look absolutely stunning. I feel it is one of the better cars to look at in the market today. In fact all of Hyundai’s cars look amazing these days. Just look at the new Elantra or the Tucson…
I press the request sensor on the door handle and open the sort of heavy door. Impressive. Enter inside and you are greeted to an all black interior. It is a very familiar look though. Elite i20 owners will find the similarities uncannily identical. There are lots of bits and pieces from the i20 actually like the speedo console, steering wheel, gear lever, power window switches, and the lot. That is not necessarily a bad thing because the design works well and the build quality is pretty solid as well. It is very easy to find the ideal driving position and then I notice something big.
And something big is the space. Boy is this car spacious or what? The front seats have so much space. The rear seats have so much space. The boot has so much space. It’s like there is so much space then there is just some more space. Never ending I tell you. Totally smitten.
Press the starter button with the clutch depressed, and you will be greeted with an extremely silent and refined startup of the 1.6-liter diesel engine. It is so difficult to imagine that such a diesel engine can be so refined in any segment below the luxury segment. No vibrations at all. Splendid. Put it into 1st gear and the car will amble along effortlessly. Turbo lag exists but it is something that can be managed around with. Going through the gears, you realize that this is a 6-speed manual so once you’re into cruising speeds, put it into 6th and it just eats up the miles so effortlessly. This also means that because of the 6th gear, revs stay low and you get superb fuel economy on the highways, which then further means that lesser stops at the fuel bunks needed due to the huge range.
But do not mistake it for a big lazy cruiser. Oh no, definitely not. This thing will outrun cars slightly more expensive as well. The engine revvs very cleanly to the redline and the acceleration is pretty strong. At redline too, the engine is extremely refined and in no ways feels like you’re driving a diesel. With an aggressive foot, the car can do 0-100 in around 10 seconds. Gulp.
Now is the time to address the elephant in the room. A rather controversial topic with Hyundai. And that is handling. And let me tell you, Hyundai has come a long way forward from the old i10 days. The steering in the Creta has decent weight. It has decent feedback. It will definitely not please the enthusiast but it is not the worst around. The Creta turns in with certain poise although body roll does exist. It’s really difficult to sum up the handling and suspension of this car. It does handle well but there is scope for improvement. Suspension is quite pliant and it is definitely not bumpy. It certainly will not disappoint on a daily run and hence I personally do not think of it as such an issue.
So overall, this car has been quite a revelation. It has all the bells and whistles. It handles decently. The diesel engine has quite a lot of grunt and is a very able cruiser. I think it looks pretty amazing, both interior and exterior. Space is in abundance. It is priced at almost 18 lacs on road for this top end diesel, which is really steep. But then again, this car is doing around 8000 units per month since launch. So clearly, the junta doesn’t mind the price. And why should they? They’ve all been proved wrong with this car.
And just when you think that is where it ends… Here is the video review of the Hyundai Creta!