BR-V vs Creta
Hyundai launched their Creta in the second half of 2015 when the rage for compact SUV was at its peak. The Renault Duster along with the sub-4 meter Ecosport took the early bird advantage and achieved real good numbers on the sales chart. It is surprising that the India’s second largest auto manufacturer was late to join the bandwagon. However, the Korean company more than compensated for it by launching a cracker of a compact SUV and the rest is history. Creta became one of the bestselling models for Hyundai in India. The Creta is neither a sub-4 meter car nor a 7-seater people mover. A real strategic move by which Hyundai avoided two worthy contenders: Ford’s popular Ecosport and the massively popular Toyota Innova. Also, Hyundai with more car like footprint and distinctive styling made it stand apart from the Duster/ Terrano as well.
Also read Honda BRV - MPV in SUV garb?
Honda with their new BRV is attempting the same strategy. A car with SUV styling and a practicality of 7-seats. The car shares the engine with their flagship sedan, Honda City. Can the new Honda pose a threat to the successful Creta? We pit both of them for the ultimate IBB comparison test.
BRV stands for ‘Bold Runabout Vehicle’. The boldness of the car is encapsulated at the front. The big chrome grille, an aggressive pair of headlamps and the faux skid plates gives it an unmistakable SUV stance at the front. The 7-seater van-like proportions catches up the moment you get into the side profile. The BRV has a van like side and rear profile. The similarity between the BRV and Mobilio immediately gets evident. The car is narrow for its length and the long overhang to accommodate the third row coupled with a low roof gives it an MPV flavor. The bold front end, the plastic claddings on the wheel arches and running boards and the roof rails try hard to give the SUV look for the car.
Also read Hyundai Creta TCO Infographic
Compared to the BRV, Creta has a more SUVish look all around. Being not constrained by the 4-meter rule and Creta doesn’t have 7-seats, Hyundai could strike a more balanced design for the Creta. The car has ample dose of muscle and flair. More importantly, the Creta looks like a baby Santa Fe. Also, Hyundai has given a neither too high nor too low stance which appeals the Creta to the car buying public.
The doors of the BRV opens in three stages and opens really wide making ingress super easy. The dashboard des ign resembles that on the new Amaze and Honda has given an all-black theme with some silver inserts and gray plastic elements to break the monotony. The re-worked dashboard is a league ahead of the old Mobilio in terms of design as well as the quality. Still you can find some hard and cheap plastic elements inside the BRV. The seats are fairly large and can accommodate most of the body frames well, however, a little more under-thigh support in the second would have been welcome. Coming to the third row, yes the third row can accommodate two full-size adults. However, it is obviously pretty cramped and the occupants sit very low with the knees pointing upwards. Put in adults only on the following conditions: if the trip is short or they are your enemies. Put full sized adults for a long distant at the third row, they may be better off in a route bus for the return journey. Limit the use of the third row for kids. The car has ample boot space even with all the three rows of seats in action and fold the third-row seats and you get a massive 691-liter boot space.
Also read Hyundai Creta Review
Hyundai Creta being a 5-seater has a more car-like layout. The dashboard and seating arrangement rather has a car like flavor than an SUV or MPV. Surprisingly, you sit low inside the Creta which accentuates the car like feel. There is ample space for the front and rear passengers. However, the car doesn’t exude a big-car feel and it feels slightly larger than the much cheaper i20 in terms of interior space.
Engine and On the Road Performance
The BRV comes with three engine options, all shared from their flagship Honda City.
- 1.5 Liter i-DTEC Diesel with 6-Speed Manual transmission generating 100 bhp and 200 Nm torque.
- 1.5 Liter i-VTEC Petrol with 6-Speed Manual transmission generating 119 bhp and 145 Nm torque.
- 1.5 Liter i-VTEC Petrol with CVT transmission with paddle shifter generating 119 bhp and 145 Nm torque.
The diesel is a very tractable engine with good power delivery right from the lower ranges of the power-band. The car pulls effortlessly at lower revs and virtually the turbo lag is non-existent. Coupled with a light clutch, BRV is a nice car to potter around in the city traffic. Straight line stability is good and the flatter power delivery makes it a decent highway cruiser. The car returns a decent 14 kmpl in the city and as high as 21 kmpl in the highway.
Also read Honda BR-V Review
The rev happy petrol powered i-VTEC is another engine available on the Honda BRV. This car gets a 6-speed transmission as well as a CVT option. The petrol has a meaty mid-range which is a boon during overtaking on the highways. The BRV comes with a slightly modified gearbox for the BRV with a shorter first gear and longer fifth and sixth for the cruise-ability on the highways.
The Hyundai Creta offers a 1.6 Liter Diesel and Petrol units. Hyundai also offers an automatic gearbox for the diesel engine as an option. The 1.6 Liter diesel unit dishes out 126 bhp making Creta a pretty fast car on the highway. The car has noticeable turbo lag, but past 1700 rpm it picks up. The 1.6 Liter automatic is smooth but has some delay to respond to sudden inputs. The automatic performs really well in the bumper-bumper traffic conditions making it a pleasure and fuss free to drive. The diesel Creta returns 14.8 Kmpl in the city and 19 Kmpl on the highway.
The 1.6 Liter petrol dishes out a healthy 121 bhp. The car performs well in pulling from low speeds, however, a little bit of working across the gearbox is required to keep it on the boil on the highways, which can be attributed to its weak mid-range. The petrol Creta offers you mileage in the 12-17 kmpl range depending on the traffic and road conditions.
Ride and Handling
Honda BRV is a pretty long vehicle and at 4.45 meters it is significantly longer than the Hyundai Creta. The car definitely is not a tool to carve corners and twisties. However, with limited body roll and highly communicative steering which weighs up well with the speed gives you the confidence in handling department. The car has a pretty impressive ride quality and smoothens up patchy and undulating road surfaces to the maximum extent.
The Hyundai Creta has a soft set suspension which pretty well handles rough patches and has a decent ride. The car handles corners pretty well, still there is an air of vagueness due to the light steering when attacking tight corners. The straight line stability on open highways are pretty impressive and doing triple digit speeds are comfortable.
The Honda has priced BRV at a range of Rs 8.75 Lakhs for the base E-Petrol to Rs 12.90 Lakhs for the VX Diesel.
The Hyundai has priced Creta at a range of Rs 9.16 Lakh for the Base Petrol to Rs 14.50 Lakhs for the 1.6 SX Plus Auto.
Both the above prices are ex-showroom Delhi.
Though the cars belong to the same segment and the prices too overlap, both caters to a different clientele of customers. The Honda BRV is a worthy alternative to the highly priced Toyota Innova Crysta or the non-exciting but practical Renault Lodgy. BRV offers the practicality of an MUV/MPV with an SUV flavor. The car has a perfect blend of SUV and MUV, and the styling makes it a desirable car rather than a built to purpose people carrier.
Hyundai Creta as a total package is still hard to beat in terms of styling, practicality, and engine options. The Creta has an air of aspirational value and is a worthy alternative for a premium hatchback or sedan. Coupled with Hyundai’s wide and friendly service network, Creta will remain a hot favorite in the Compact SUV segment.