Driven: 2020 Hyundai Creta
In today’s world where traditional sedans and hatchbacks are fading out of the market and being replaced by the taller SUVs and cross-overs, the consumer is now left with an array of options best fit for them and their family. The 2020 Hyundai Creta however offers a slightly different take on its idea of a cross-over in an already congested segment. Bold styling and youthful details combine to bring a fresh new look to Hyundai’s 2nd generation Creta model. The 2020 Hyundai Creta recently launched in South Africa, bringing an entirely new, fresh design from its factory in India. The 2020 Creta offers both a balance of updated tech to its interior as well as minimizing clutter and confusion.
Look and Feel
The touch screen infotainment system is basic with just a few buttons to select from off-screen, but the system does have Android Auto and Apple Car Play, so most of the controlling does come from your phone anyway. A convenient wireless charger comes in handy and sits comfortably in its designated compartment in front of the gear lever. Between the infotainment system and wireless charger, the instrument cluster is finished off with 2 simple dials controlling the aircon and its speeds – interestingly the Creta is not fitted with climate control (auto aircon) it turns out neither do any of its derivatives in the range. A simple yet practical approach has been taken by the design team in terms of functionality.
Other significant changes to the interior of the Creta are the 2-toned quality seats, although slightly impractical, the white and black finishes do tie back to the youthful factor on offer with the new Creta.
On the outside, this is where the new Creta really comes to life. The designers have paid special attention to sharper, thinner lines around edges that are still round and globular. Radiating sportiness, this is complemented by the front LED headlights (arguably the most spoken about aspect of the new Creta) that curve long-ways and down, creating a funky finish.
From the moment you are seated in the cockpit and engaging with the push start, you feel like you are inside “the new and improved” of Hyundai. The Creta displays numerous actions and features to its dashboard and electronics. A welcome tone and greeting are all quirky extras additional to driver experience before startup.
Steering and Handling
A big plus for the new Creta is the steering wheel redesign; completely redesigned, it has an uncanny resemblance to Audi’s steering design that we really like. The flat base on the steering wheel – for the petrol heads maybe a less noteworthy point - offers a nice touch to the 4-spoked wheel. The softened satin bars are comfortable too for the purpose of placing and resting the hands.
Overall, the softness and smoothness of the steering wheel through the corners feels really good and modern, but the handling through the corner can be a bit lost due to the softness and poise through the corner. On the flatter, open roads It doesn’t display erratic or boisterous handling traits but remained steady and alert to any changes in the wheel – a much more resolved figure in terms of steering and handling from its predecessor. Through the corners accelerating, the Creta holds to its own well, feeling steady and robust exiting a turn.
The entry-level Premium Creta is run by a newly developed 1.5l naturally aspirated engine (which is notably quiet) and said to produce 85 kW and 144Nm of torque.
‘Economical’ is the name of the game with the new Hyundai Creta, boasting just over 6l/100km, the compact SUV can do around 700km on a full tank – not bad at all when we consider other family-orientated mini SUVs. Power is lost in the Creta (underwhelming in the entry-level Premium tested) and the gearbox does get a bit winy through acceleration with a flat spot and no mid-range punch.
For what is on offer when considering the entry-level Premium, and a price tag starting from R374 900, we are not overly convinced in terms of performance.
For the consumer looking for something edgy and sporty enough that compliments the visual appeal of the new Creta; spending an additional R55 000 gets the 1.5l turbodiesel motor for top-of-the-range there is the exclusive 7-speed dual-clutch transmission (DCT) turbo-petrol (103 kW/242Nm) - upping the ante and competing well up against likes of the Ford EcoSport and Kia Seltos.
The 2020 Hyundai Creta is nicely placed both on and off-road which was lacking from the previous model and even from other brands competing in the compact-SUV market today. A formidable attempt from Hyundai, the Creta’s bold styling and ambitious design paired well with an updated interior.