Toyota Etios Cross review, test drive

Toyota Etios Cross Price in India

 

Toyota seemed to be in a similar mood when they announced Etios Cross at the 12th Auto Expo in India. One associates the brand primarily with two models; the Innova and Fortuner. The former is the ultimate MPV while the latter is a popular premium SUV in India.

 

Unfortunately, the fame and success enjoyed by the above models never crumbled down on its entry level cars. Etios Liva, which marked an entry in the hatch segment, could not battle it out with the competition. Lack of premium interiors and dated design made buyers shy away from it. To regain lost confidence and engage more with the adventurous type, Toyota launched the Etios Cross. This crossover claims to be bold with an attitude. Our first impression report reveals more on it.

 

EXTERIOR AND LOOKS

 

From the front the Toyota Etios Cross sports a new smiling grill that stretches from light to light that later extends down like a chinese mustache. The lights though similar to the old a elongated on the inner side to match the grill. The new bumper is huge and very sporty and is loaded with a lot of cladding to put on the crossover mask. Beside the silver mustache at the base of the bumper on each side are the fog lamps that looks like two dimples on the cheek. This is something you may find in WRC rally cars. Just the huge spoiler at the back is missing.

 

The is also a silver cladding at the base like a small goatee on the face. There is a cladding that starts from the front to the side and flows into the rear too. From the side the Toyota Etios Cross is the same except for 3 changes. Now the indicators are on the mirrors and the sharp design is lovely and the other being the new chrome multi spoke alloys adds a sporty feel with sophistication and body cladding for the crossover effect. The side cladding is divided into two parts the fibre at the top and a silver touch at the base.

 

The rear too is the same but now the entire bumper is fibre and has a silver cladding in the centre. Unfortunately it misses out on sensors like the Etios and Viva. There is a fibre cladding on the bootlid too which houses the ETIOS CROSS badging. The tail lamps are clear and remain unchanged.

 

INTERIOR AND CABIN

 

The image quite clearly shows that the Etios Cross has dark Black tone interiors with matte finished platic parts looks quite premium. The steering wheel gets audio controls (only available with the top variant though) which definitely comes in handy. The gear levers are also covered in leather which adds a premium feel to the vehicles interiors. The speedometer is placed at the center of the dashboard and has a combination of Black and Blue colors which make it look unique and also easily readable. The seats also have the Etios Cross stitching which makes the interiors feel special.

 

The Etios Cross has a seating capacity of 5 adults, while the rear seats can accommodate 3 occupants quite comfortably and because of the semi flat central tunnel the person seating in the middle of the rear seat won’t feel cramped.

 

ENGINE AND PERFORMANCE

 

Like the Etios sedan and the Liva hatchback, the new hatchover is also available with two petrol and one diesel engine option. The 1.2-litre petrol mill powers the base petrol model ‘G’ delivering 79bhp and 104Nm of torque. The more powerful 1.5-litre unit does duty for the ‘V’ variant sending 89bhp and 132Nm to the front wheels. The diesel GD and VD variants use the sedate 1.4-litre turbocharged engine producing 68bhp and 170Nm of torque.

 

We briefly drove the V petrol and V-D diesel variants and although there is some increase in weight compared to the Liva, the performance is pretty similar to the hatchback. The diesel is lacklustre in comparison to the petrol, although there is no turbo lag, the engine lacks grunt and needs to be revved hard if you don’t want to miss the quick overtaking opportunity. It also highlights the poor NVH levels, although that should not be too much of a problem in petrol as the four-cylinder unit sounds really nice. We had no opportunity of gauging the efficiency in our drive and the ARAI figures of two petrol and diesel are 17.71kpl, 16.78kpl and 23.59kpl respectively.

 

The steering is a bit vague and even though it does weigh up, it feels artificial. The ride quality is good, the Etios Cross absorbs all the bumps without much fuss. The ground clearance is marginally higher than that of the Liva (may be 5mm, no confirmation from Toyota), courtesy 15-inch alloy-wheels that also look nice. There is hardly anything exciting about the performance of the Etios Cross, but it is capable of plying on all sorts of roads, also with a ground clearance of well over 170mm it can also occasionally venture on the unpaved country roads.

 

DRIVING DYNAMICS

 

Toyota Etios Cross handling is a bit off mark at high speeds but it is decent in city driving, courtesy the 3-spoke leather wrapped electric power steering with tilt function. The audio controls find a place on it too, so that the driver can comfortably set the volume according to his desire. As for performance, the company hasn’t tweaked or tinkered the all three engines; so it is a good performer spontaneously. The 1.5L petrol engine propels the crossover touch the 100kmph mark from standstill in a mere 11 seconds while clocking 160kmph as top speed. The other petrol engine, the 1.2L, achieves the 0-100kmph in a comparatively larger time span due to less powerful and mileage oriented. Precisely, it touches the 100kmph from standstill in 14 seconds along with a top speed of 150kmph. The 1.4L diesel mill focuses more on fuel efficiency and hence, lacks behind the petrol models by a fair margin. It crosses 100kmph barrier from standstill in 18 seconds and measuring top speed as 160kmph.

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SAFETY

 

The Toyota Etios Liva hatchback has received 4 stars from Latin NCAP, which makes it quite a safe car. However the vehicle which was tested was equipped with dual airbags at the front. The Etios Cross gets dual airbags on the top V (or VD for diesel) variants. The base G doesn’t get airbags, nor does it get ABS. ABS with EBD is offered as standard on all diesel trims of the Etios Cross. With cars like the Hyundai i20 getting 5 stars from NCAP, we expect the world’s largest automaker to beef up safety on the Etios.

 

CONCLUSSION

 

The Etios Cross looks rugged and retains the same Etios range of engines. It is easy to drive and comfortable too. However, the badge Cross doesn’t justify as its ground clearance hasn’t been improved and the Etios Cross has an increase of just 4mm. This is more of a cosmetic upgrade, hence the price hike should be much.

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Toyota Etios Cross Ex Showroom Price in Hyderabad ranges from /- (Etios Cross G) to  8,06,675/- (Etios Cross D 4D VD) .Toyota Etios Cross has 3 Variants of Diesel are available in India. Toyota Etios Cross comes in 8 colours, namely Celestial Black,Harmony Beige,White,Ultramarine Blue,Classic Grey,Symphony Silver,Inferno Orange,Vermilion Red.

Hyundai Tucson Review & Ratings

Hyundai Tucson Price in India

Hyundai launched Tucson SUV in India priced at Rs 22.24 lakh (on-road price, New Delhi) in petrol and diesel variants, with a 2WD drivetrain. Missing out on the AWD version, Hyundai will soon add the AWD drivetrain to the carline in May 2017. The all-wheel drive system on the new Tucson will be the Active On-Demand 4WD with 50/50 front and rear lock mode system and it will be offered with the 2.0 litre, four cylinder CRDi unit. Additionally, it will get an all-black interior with a panoramic sunroof. Hyundai Tucson re-entered the Indian market in November 2016 after the premium SUV was phased out in 2010. The new Hyundai Tucson is positioned between Creta and Santa-Fe in Hyundai India’s SUV line-up. Currently in third generation, the 2016 Hyundai Tucson is built on the Fluidic Sculpture 2.0 design philosophy and features multiple design elements that accentuate the imposing exterior profile. The Hyundai Tucson India-spec model is available with a choice of two engines and two transmissions in a total of five variants.

 

EXTERIOR AND STYLE

Hyundai’s ‘Fluidic’ design philosophy was a runaway hit when it was showcased to Indian customers with cars such as the Verna and the Elantra. Over the years, the language itself has evolved to suit conservative tastes and has been distancing itself from bold and distinctive design traits.The new Tucson is based on the evolutionary ‘Fluidic 2.0’ theme, that mixes the curvy overtones of the older Hyundais with cleaner lines. In terms of size, the Tucson fits in right between Creta and the Santa Fe. The overall theme of design is a mix and match of its SUV siblings too. Up front, it gets Hyundai’s signature cascading grille, that takes up a bulk of the real estate. There’s a nice hint of aggression to the face, courtesy the rounded headlamps, the large mock intakes and the positioning of the daytime running lamps and the foglamps. The top-spec Tucson will feature a dual-barrel LED lighting setup, which we think looks super cool. Lower trims will get a standard projector headlamp setup. Adding to the aggression are the crisp lines on the bonnet and the wheel arches that flare outwards. We particularly like how Hyundai hasn’t gone overboard with the usage of chrome on the Tucson (especially at the front) and chosen to keep things classy.

Round to the side, the Tucson seems a notch curvier than the Creta thanks to the rounded wheel arches. None the less, it does feature the sharp shoulder line – which has become synonymous with Hyundai designs – that emanates from the front fender and runs across the length of the car. The massive 18-inch diamond cut alloy wheels fill up the wheel wells nicely and are wrapped with chunky 225/55R18 tyres. Again, we love the tasteful use of chrome here that highlights the window line that tapers towards the C-pillar, and the little dabs on the door handles. NeatThe rear profile does instil a sense of deja vu. While a few will feel it looks like an overgrown Active i20, most will draw parallels to the large Santa Fe. The rear has been kept fuss-free, with the large wraparound taillamps grabbing most of the attention. Just like the headlamps, these get the LED treatment as well. The customary matte-black cladding, the faux skidplate finished in matte silver and the twin-tip chrome exhausts compliment the butch looks rather well.

 

INTERIOR AND COMFORT ;

On the inside, the Tucson looks more Hyundai Creta than Santa Fe. The Creta’s cabin is a good place to begin with but upgraders will expect something more and distinct. There is a two-tone black and beige dash with a distinct separation between the dual zone HVAC and the entertainment unit. Speaking of which is an 8-inch touchscreen like the one in the Elantra, with both Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Thankfully, there are also knobs and dials for a few of the functions. The dials are crisp to read and have a 4.2-inch colour screen between them for trip computer and other info. Below the HVAC are two power sockets and one USB slot, but in today’s connected times, it should have been the other way around. Interestingly, the higher-spec car gets a slightly different centre console floorpan with an extra cubby hole and a larger central console box. The multi-function steering wheel is leather-wrapped as are the seats, armrests and transmission knob.

Interior space is generous and the legroom at the rear is very impressive. Furthermore the rear seat backs also recline, the only thing is that the rear seats are set quite low and thus with window line higher than usual your view outside is slightly reduced.   The boot is large with 513 litres of storage. It can be accessed with the auto-opening feature ala Elantra, where it pops open if you stand near with the key on you. But just like the Elantra we had trouble getting this to work all the time. The boot can be extended with a 60:40 split rear seat.The all-automatic cars have six airbags, with the manual one getting just two. ABS with EBD are standard and the top trim gets electronic stability control, hill start and brake assist along with downhill brake control. Parking sensors are present for the front and rear, along with a rear camera view.

 

ENGINE AND TRANSMISSION

Hyundai offers two engines and two gearboxes. The 2.0-litre petrol is the same motor from the Elantra but in a higher state of tune (155PS compared to 152PS) and comes with either a six-speed manual or automatic. However, the more exciting news is the new 2.0-litre turbo diesel that also offers the same choice of manual and automatic gearboxes. Given how creamy smooth and linear Hyundai’s current diesels are, expectations are high. Initial impressions are good with 185PS and 400Nm, numbers right up there with European motors in more expensive machines. Push the start button and you’ll notice that the engine sounds a little louder than the 1.6-litre Hyundai diesel from the outside. However, excellent sound deadening ensures things stay smooth and relatively quiet in the cabin when the doors are shut

The engine offers a linear power spread and is decently free-revving but I found no need to cross 4,000rpm, riding the large wave of torque is the way to go. We drove the six-speed torque converter automatic and discovered an able and willing partner but not the fastest unit out there. Shifts are quite quick and seamless but the gearbox takes a tiny moment to respond to inputs on the throttle when the vehicle is coasting. This is because it is eager to drop revs to idle when the driver lifts off the throttle. The act of the gearbox re-engaging when the driver gets back on the accelerator is what causes the delay. It’s a fuel saving measure that persists in both Eco and Sport mode.Elaborating on the two modes, Eco dulls throttle response and encourages the gearbox to shift up early early while Sport offers sharper responses to inputs from the right foot and ensures the gearbox holds gears longer. There are no paddle shifters but manual shifting is possible through the gear selector. The manuals don’t get these modes but instead offer adjustment for steering weight, called Flex Steer.

 

RIDE AND HANDLING

The Tucson has a pliant ride overall, however there is some scope of improvement. It handles well with minimum body roll. the Tucson suspension has rebound dampers which hep controlling body roll. However, the low speed ride gets harsh. What we like is that the steering is weighted and it not very light as in some other Hyundais. However, there is still some kind of disconnect and it doesn’t feel as confidence inspiring as some of the competition.The Tucson may not entice the enthusiastic driver but it is still good for normal driving and manages well even at high speeds. The brakes are good but they do tend to bite suddenly, something which we had also experienced in the Creta.

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SAFETY

For safety, dual airbags, ABS with EBD, ISOFIX, rear parking sensors and a rear camera come as standard. While the AT ‘GL’ variant gets front parking sensors plus side and curtain airbags too, only the range-topping ‘GLS’ grade gets ESC, vehicle stability management, brake-assist, hill-hold and hill-descent control.

 

CONCLUSSION

The 2017 Hyundai Tucson is a good package and can be a great choice for someone who wants a 5-seater SUV and doesn’t mind having only 2WD. The Tucson is definitely priced a bit on the costlier side and even though it should be rivalling the Mahindra XUV500 and Honda CR-V, don’t be surprised if people start comparisons with the Ford Endeavour and Toyota Fortuner. The Tucson isn’t an out-and-out proper SUV but more of a soft-roader, and it should definitely be your pick if you want a nice diesel SUV that isn’t as large as the Endeavour or Fortuner.

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Hyundai Tucson Ex Showroom Price in Gurgaon ranges from  17,98,709/- (Tucson Nu 2.0 6 Speed Manual Base) to 25,17,979/- (Tucson R 2.0 6 Speed Automatic GLS).Hyundai Tucson has 5 Variants of Petrol are available in India. Hyundai Tucson comes in 5 colours, namely Wine Red,Phantom Black,Sleek Silver,Pure White,Star Dust.