Living and working in the busy metropolitan city does promise us a pay check at the end of every month (in most cases), but not the tranquillity that the lush green country roads have to offer. So when we got this feature-loaded diesel MG Hector at our disposal, we could only think of driving down to the pristine beaches and breath-taking landscapes of Gokarna in Karnataka.
Located at a distance of a little over 680kms from Mumbai, Gokarna proved to be our ideal haven for that perfect long-weekend trip. We started at the pink of dawn to avoid the peak-hour city traffic. The route to this pilgrimage town is confounding, to say the least, and promises different terrains and driving conditions, and with the MG Hector, we were prepared for it all. As we took our first halt for lunch, a brief look at the fuel gauge got us all amazed. Considering this mammoth of an SUV measuring close to 5,000 metres in length and weighing a hefty 1,700kg, the efficiency that it returned is astounding.
Now, the MG Hector is powered by a 2.0-litre diesel engine that produces an impressive 170bhp and 350Nm of torque. Sure, the performance figures do not really add up to impressive efficiency figures, but then this is the Hector that we are talking about. The full-size SUV with a 60-litre fuel tank gave us an impressive driving range of around 950kms. What’s more, the six-way adjustable driver seat ensured that the captain of the ship, in this case a car, had an opportunity to enjoy the long and winding country roads, while the iSmart system with embedded navigation guided us to our destination. And parking it in tricky spots was not a problem either, thanks to the 360-degree camera that offers a bird’s eye view of the SUV.
Gokarna is primarily known for its beaches and temples. And, we did not intend to miss out on either. One of lesser known facts is that Gokarna is one of the seven important Hindu pilgrimage centres. The main temple with Lord Shiva as its deity (also known Mahabaleshwara) is built on the classic Dravidian-style architecture and is one of the must visit places. What’s also interesting is that the name Gokarna means cow’s ear. Legend has it that Lord Shiva emerged from the ear of a cow here and the place is also at the ear-shaped confluence of two rivers - Gangavali and Aghanashini.
Driving through the scenic path leading to Gokarna with the Western Ghats and rocky mountains on one side and the Arabian sea on the other is bound to revive a weary soul. Also, when in Gokarna, a visit to the Om beach is a must. The beach gets its name from the two semi crescents joined together that forms the shape of the Hindu symbol, Om. Gokarna also offers some of finest culinary experiences to suit the taste buds of the locals as well as tourists.
After a weekend full of beautiful moments, it was time for us to pack our bags and head back to Mumbai. And the MG Hector proved to be our perfect companion for this journey and it indeed impressed us with its generous cabin and luggage space which accommodated literally everything that we needed for this journey from Mumbai to Gokarna and back. Moreover, the vehicle has amazed us with a fuel economy of 15.8kmpl under regular driving conditions and uncontrolled environment. Additionally, the six-speed gearbox has very well-spaced out ratios which made driving a breeze in traffic as well on the highways.
This journey has by far offered one of the best driving experiences with brilliant roads, scenic routes and of course the perfect companion, the MG Hector. This feature-loaded SUV from MG Motors is definitely that perfect family car that you have been longing for. Click here to watch us drive the MG Hector to Gokarna and back.