The Brezza feels roomier on the inside as compared to the likes of the Sonet, Magnite, Venue and Kiger.

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Just came back from test drive of Brezza AT. Here are the key points I could figure out in 20 odd kms on expressway as well as a little bit in traffic.

Pros:

  • Work done on exterior by Maruti. This is not a typical lightweight tin can Maruti. Just try to close the boot and it is far more European as compared to any other car in Maruti’s catalogue. The doors and other panels definitely exude confidence.
  • The car looks handsome from outside. Flat bonnet, great looking headlamps upfront, squat stance and the excellent rear gives the car a personality. The huge claddings may be a miss or a hit among folks though. But there is no denying the fact that this is a good looking contemporary car and can stand on its own amongst the competition from exterior looks perspective.
  • The visibility from driver’s car in the car is top-notch. I absolutely loved this attribute of the car. For a newbie, this is confidence inspiring. The car is roomy on the inside and there is no claustrophobic feeling. In fact, the car feels bigger on the inside as compared to the likes of Sonet/Venue/Magnite/Kiger.
  • The engine is silent and superbly refined. Maruti continues to take the cake when it comes to refinement of their petrol engines. And this engine with automatic gearbox is designed to give superlative mileage. With the kind of moving traffic within city limits we have in Gurgaon, my understanding is that this combination can easily give 13kmpl. Out on highways, 19kmpl should be achievable.
  • The engine performance from 0kmph to 50kmph is brilliant. If this car is to be driven in city, I doubt the Hyundai DCTs can keep up with it. The closest contemporary I could think of with similar behavior is Magnite/Kiger. Extremely linear and quick off the hook. The engine performance from 50kmph to 80kmph is good as well. From 80kmph to 100kmph, it takes a little effort. But post 100kmph, it’s a different story. More on this in CONS section.
  • The paddle shifters are a joy to operate on this car. Slot it in Manual Mode and use paddles to push engine and K15C doesn’t disappoint. It is not a scorcher by any means, but it does elevate the dampen responses that mar the Drive mode.
  • The suspension tune on Brezza is surprising. It is very mature. All three passengers in the car during test drive were very comfortable with how this car was tackling the potholes or suspension joints in the flyover. Mighty impressed!!!
  • The spare tyre is a full sized one. Although it’s with steel rim, but full points to Maruti for giving the full size tyre.
  • The boot layout is good and the fact that the rear seats fall flat at the boot level makes the boot very usable.

Cons:

  • Maruti wants 16.3L OTR for ZXi+ Auto version from me. But the choice of plastics that it uses screams cheap and outdated. The plastics are of at least 3 notches below that should have been used in a car costing this much. Yes, the dashboard layout has changed for good and there is brown color breaking the monotony in dashboard. But, this is still an extremely cheap and drab interior. You touch anything- dashboard, doors, vanity mirror, cabin light, toggle stick, that glossy frame outside infotainment system; everything is cheap. PERIOD!!!
  • The fact that I have experienced Sonet and Seltos in my family, this negative gets accentuated to a much higher degree.
  • That HUD thing sucks. I am at a loss of adjectives that can be attributed to someone calling this thing as a feature. It has zero aesthetic and doesn’t add anything from a functional aspect. The only thing it does is glare your eyes. I felt it absolutely cringy and had to close this so called feature within couple of minutes in the drive.
  • Who provides a toggle stick to navigate various options on MID? Maruti does it and they are not done with one, but two toggle sticks- one for MID and another one for trip meters. The story doesn’t end here. These are not just some highly crafted quality sticks, instead these are some very long ones which constantly invite the user to flex it and try not break it.
  • The quality fiasco continues to the gear lever. Could you design it just a little worse to break your own records? The gear lever is bad to hold, the leather or whatever material covering is ultra-cheap. The gear lever panel is not backlit and the sequence P R N D M meant I always ended up in M and then got back to D. The absence of backlit panel means you always look in MID to see which mode you are in. Even the slotting of gears is not that precise that your subconscious mind can ascertain which mode you are in.
  • The seats, both front and rear, offer okish under thigh support. I am 5’10” and felt that the seat should have been at least 4-5 cm longer.
  • Maruti missed TPMS and ventilated seats on Brezza. At asking price of more than 15L OTR, this is bad.
  • I didn’t like the horn either on this car. Just look at what Hyundai gives to i20 for starters.
  • This engine gearbox combo is meant to be driven within 0-100kmph. Stand on the accelerator with both feet if you want to climb to 120kmph. Thankfully, the manual mode with paddle shifters are there for getting over this issue a little bit. Maruti has not provided any sports mode to alter the tuning to get a bit more power.

Verdict

Maruti Brezza is a mixed bag. While the exteriors are smashing, the interiors take a beating. The fundamentals of this car are very sorted but Maruti has altered the engine tune in such a way that it gasps for power above 100kmph in drive mode.

Personally, this is car which appeals to head than heart for me. It has reasonably good engine, gearbox, suspension tune, super exterior looks and even a good mileage. Where it fails big time is the vibe of the car – be it on power front or the interior aesthetics. The fact that it crosses 15L mark for top trim doesn’t help its case either. Seltos HTX IVT is cheaper than Brezza ZXi+ Auto.

If I were to purchase Brezza only, my pick will be ZXi auto instead of ZXi+ auto.

My hunt for the new car continues and post this experience, I am strongly inclined to experience strong hybrid on GV/Hyryder combo.

Read BHPian comments for more insights and information.

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