Mahindra NuvoSport N8: Rank 4
Final Score: 349/600
Price: Rs 11.97 lakh, OTR, Mumbai
Mahindra has done well with the NuvoSport by making it a better buying proposition than the Quanto ever was. But, in today’s world of efficient, compact and easy motoring, the NuvoSport feels a little outdated. The ladder chassis robs it off dynamics and efficiency, and having used the Quanto’s shell and its interiors, makes the NuvoSport feel dated in this company. It has road presence and it is rugged, but that’s not enough to hand it a win.
Ford EcoSport Titanium+: Rank 3
Final Score: 373/600
Price: Rs 11.40 lakh, OTR, Mumbai
Ford realised early the potential Maruti’s compact SUV holds and it rightly cut the EcoSport’s prices to make it more competitive. Given its edge when it comes to both ride and handling, and of course safety, the Ford did have a fighting chance here. And as our ScoreCard reveals, there’s no single big flaw with the EcoSport; it’s the many smaller aspects that come together to push it down to third place in this test. It struggles to match up to the Hyundai and the Maruti in areas like visibility, quality, and driveability.
Hyundai i20 Active SX: Rank 2
Final Score: 384/600
Price: Rs 10.53 lakh, OTR, Mumbai
The Hyundai i20 Active comes very close to winning this contest. It’s not a proper SUV, we agree. But, then neither is the Vitara Brezza or the EcoSport. However, as a car to live with everyday and to take off over the weekend, even if it involves some dirt roads, the Active is pretty much up to task. It is the quickest car here and with a fine balance between ride and handling. It scores well on quality and comfort and is the cheapest to buy in this lot. But, it’s not as flexible; as domineering (in looks); or spacious as some of the other SUVs in this test. Mostly, it fails to keep up with the Brezza.
Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza ZDI+: Rank 1
Final Score: 387/600
Price: Rs 11.53 lakh, OTR, Mumbai
The Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza wins. It doesn’t win by a big margin as a product, but as an SUV for the city, it ticks most of the boxes. It has the SUV stance, the right clearance, adequate space, flexibility, and it is the easiest to drive courtesy great visibility. It’s also efficient, should have great resale, and is almost car-like around corners. It doesn’t ride too well and the seats could do with some additional firmness. The Brezza could also do with better steering response. But, these shortcomings and the degree of these shortcomings, isn’t enough to repel buyers. No wonder, it has received such a good response. So, if you have around Rs 12 lakh to spare, need a diesel and want SUV posturing, well the Vitara Brezza would be our pick.
Photography by Kapil Angane
Click here to read our Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza First Drive
Click here to read our Mahindra NuvoSport First Drive
Click here to read our Ford EcoSport First Drive
Click here to read Mahindra TUV 300 vs Ford EcoSport