Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza Test Drive & Price In India
Maruti may be king in the small car space, but what the carmaker’s line-up lacked was a compact SUV model. This all-new Vitara Brezza plugs that gap in India’s largest car manufacturer’s product mix. It’s an important product for another reason too — it is the first Maruti to be designed and developed entirely in India. Maruti insiders reiterate this is a model made in India, for India, and the 98 percent localisation level further underlines the point. The overwhelming initial interest in the car suggests Maruti has a winner on its hands, but let’s just zoom in a bit and see the Vitara Brezza for what it is.
Built on Suzuki’s global C platform, the Vitara Brezza measures just under 4m in length. Like chief rival, the Ford EcoSport, the monocoque-bodied Vitara Brezza places its engine transversally and will be a front-wheel drive only; there is no provision for an all-wheel-drive system. While the last bit is unlikely to be a deterrent for buyers, what is sure to find universal appeal is the Vitara Brezza’s safe but robust design. Maruti designers wanted to capture the upright stance and look of a proper SUV within the small footprint and it must be said, they’ve succeeded to that end.
he speciality of this exquisite vehicle is that it has the qualities of a SUV as well as that of a hatchback. Hence, this car has a smooth run in the Indian city roads. I can traverse the highways with an equal amount of ease. The Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza exterior presents an aggressive look in many ways. The new engine grille does play a great part in this aspect of the vehicle’s personality. The chrome designs ensure that you get a fantastic combination of beauty and sturdiness in equal measure. The front bumper has the same colour as that of the body and thus looks like the extension of the body in many ways. A big air dam and two high intensity fog lights are the highlights of this front burner. The smoked look of the headlight cluster that has projector lamps and daytime running lights is a fantastic experience. The 16-alloy wheel arches enable a high quality Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza performance. This is one of the few cars that have black window pillars to suit the colour of the tinted glass. You can recognize this magnificent vehicle from afar because of the chromium plate with its name engraved. A faux silver garnished aluminium plate guards the rear bumper. In short, one can say that the actual looks of the car matches perfectly with the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza images.
First thing you would notice about the cabin is the comfortable ingress and egress. You just walk inside the cabin, which is also a boon for people having knee problems. The three spoke steering wheel looks familiar but the dashboard is entirely new. There is a neat looking centre console which is enclosed with a gloss black outline. The dashboard is all black but gets silver elements in the middle. The air vents are sizeable and the auto climate control works really well to cool the cabin quickly. The lower half of the centre console has well laid out uncluttered buttons which feel nice and premium to use. Overall quality of the cabin is good but in some places you might find hard plastics and components (window controls, steering stalks) that are shared with older Maruti cars.You get a neat looking instrument cluster which has some fancy tricks up its sleeve. You can change its colour to white, orange, blue, red and yellow. The infotainment system is well kitted up having a nice big touch screen with good touch quality. It offers Apple CarPlay connectivity along with MirrorLink so you can seamlessly stay connected with your phone through the car. The audio quality is above average and many won’t feel the need of changing the speakers. It also offers navigation system which isn’t intuitive to use if you have a habit of using Google Maps. The big screen also doubles up as a reverse parking camera display that is very convenient in congested situations.
The best part about the cabin of the Vitara Brezza is the driving and upright seating position that adds to the confidence while driving. The steering and seat is height adjustable and has a good range so both tall and short people will find a comfortable position to drive. The large glass area ensures that the cabin feels airy despite having a dark interior theme. Maruti has offered clever storage spaces across the cabin including two gloveboxes, the upper one is a cool box while the lower glovebox is the conventional storage to keep documents and essentials. There is a front sliding arm rest with storage, front passenger side under seat storage, 1-litre bottle holder on all the doors, coat hanger, seatback pockets and hook, front cup holders, sunglass holder, rear arm rest with cupholders and more.
The seats are quite supportive and well padded for long trips. There is a good sense of space at the rear too and you have ample amount of legroom for average height adults but tall passengers might find the legroom limited to some extent. Shoulder room is decent too for three passengers at the rear. Head room is excellent, even for tall people. Maruti could have added air vents for the rear passengers but the AC works quite well and you won’t feel the need of it. The engineers have carved out excellent boot space of 328-litres in the Vitara Brezza which can accommodate your luggage for weekend getaways. The best part about luggage space is that the rear seat folds flat down and it is flexible too with 60:40 split. Some of the key features of the Vitara Brezza include cruise control, auto headlamps, auto wipers, keyless entry with push button start, reverse camera and sensors, power foldable ORVMs and more.
For the time being, the Vitara Brezza is being offered with a choice of only one engine — the tried and tested Fiat-sourced 1248cc, four cylinder, DDIS 200 diesel engine, which we have already seen on other Maruti Suzuki offerings like Ciaz, Ertiga and S-Cross as well. Here on the Vitara Brezza, the engine develops a healthy power output of 90 PS, while the peak torque is rated at 200 Nm.
Like on the other offerings from Maruti Suzuki which come with this very engine, the Vitara Brezza pulls off in a linear fashion with a minimal turbo lag, which is quite impressive, however, it could have done with slightly more amount of power, as even with the full force on the throttle, the engine doesn’t pulls off instantly. Though, the car begins to pick up some pace once the rev counter crosses the 1500 rpm mark, with a nice linear surge of torque flowing across the rev range. The engine is not something which an enthusiast will love, and it lacks the punch and adrenaline rush of the 100 PS Ecosport, but then, it has an adequate amount of power, decent enough for your daily duties and occasional highway runs, without feeling underpowered anywhere.
Fuel efficiency has always been a big trump card for Maruti Suzuki, and here on the Vitara Brezza, the 1.3 liter engine delivers a claimed fuel economy of 24.3 kmpl. Though, on the test runs, we did obtain a combined fuel efficiency of 21.4 kmpl, which is pretty impressive for a car of this size.
DRIVING DYNAMICS ;
The Maruti Vitara Brezza is a compact SUV and you don’t expect it to be as fun to drive as its closest rival Ford EcoSport. However, the Vitara Brezza is surprisingly quite engaging to drive on the ghats and confidence inspiring on the straights with its balanced suspension setup. The handling is very predictable as the car follows your steering inputs quickly but not as sharply as the EcoSport. The electric steering is a bit numb in the centre and offers neutral feedback. It is light at slow speeds and weighs up enough for highway cruising. The ride quality is a big USP of the Brezza as it glides over potholes and bumps without getting juddery. Both low speed and high speed undulations are taken care of very well by the suspension setup. Braking is very effective too, we stood on the brakes and it came to a halt without any fuss.
SAFETY FEATURES ;
ABS, EBD and dual front airbags for driver and co-passenger are among the vital safety features aboard. While driver side airbag is standard across line-up, the co-passenger side airbag is offered only on the top-spec variant. Other features such as front seat belt pre-tensioners with load limiters, front fog lamps etc also also be available on the SUV. Along with the aforementioned features the Z trims will come with projector head lamps in front, automatic AC, LED daytime running lights, piano finish for centre console, 16 inch alloy wheels, 60:40 split rear seat, steering mounted controls for audio, height adjuster for driver, rear wiper with washer, rear centre arm rest, fog lamps in front and faux skid plates on bumpers. And the range topping ZDi+ variant comes with few extras such as cooled glove box, automatic head lamp, rain sensing wiper, electrically folding wing mirrors, arm rest in front, navigation and reverse parking camera display, push button start and cruise control.
There is no denying the fact that the Vitara Brezza is a sure shot winner for Maruti Suzuki with a real possibility of it becoming its bread and butter product in the next few years. It has exciting and yet understated looks, a good interior that comes packed with gadgets and a good mechanical package. Negatives of course include the plastic quality which really needs to be improved and the fact that the NVH levels are just a tad bit too high for our liking. Although we were a bit skeptical about the Vitara Brezza, the car certainly has not disappointed in any form or measure and is certainly something we would strongly advice our readers to buy if you are looking for a new car around the Rs 10 lakh range. All said and done, you have to wonder, does that mid-size sedan or premium hatchback really make any sense anymore?