Have you been living under a rock? Well because there has been a lot of hype surrounding the Vitara Brezza, especially after the Auto Expo. However a proper introduction might be in order here. The Vitara Brezza is the first compact SUV from Maruti- something that the market has been craving for, well, a lifetime. You see the compact SUV space has really taken off over the past few years and the absence of Maruti from this space has been glaring to say the least.
However the Vitara Brezza has been launched and deliveries will start this month end. The Brezza is slotted below the Maruti Suzuki S-Cross and will take on rivals like the Mahindra TUV300 and the Ford EcoSport, since it will measure in at under 4 metres in length. So should you join the 5600 who have already booked the car within 48 hours? Read on.
I like the styling and is this really under 4m?
Well, you are not alone as styling is the biggest USP of the Brezza. It is not overly aggressive or even futuristic but done just right and will appeal to car buyers a lot. The complete dimensions include length of 3995mm, width of 1790mm and height of 1640mm. Through these images, you can clearly see the LED DRL headlamps and round fog lights of the vehicle, its rising window line, new split 5 spoke 16 inch alloy wheels and even a tailgate spoiler with an integrated high mount stop lamp.
There has been a clear attempt to give it a proper SUV look with the square wheel-arches, short overhangs and an upright hood. Thus the end result is that it looks bigger than its immediate rivals. What is also interesting is that the Vitara Brezza offers personalization with theme based options- Glamour, Urban, Sporty. This would only increase its appeal and overall we really liked the paint quality and overall build.
Impressive, what about the interiors?
The interior design is typical Maruti at first glance but look closer and you will some subtle changes. While the steering wheel and a few other cabin details remain the new centre console is in sync with the square theme and you also see the same shape for the instrument cluster. Silver accents on the dash liven up the interior while the instrument cluster with the mood lights (5 options- Pink, Blue, Orange, Red and White) is quite cool too. Just like the S-Cross and Baleno we like the no beige cabin as black is definitely a sportier option. Quality is decent along the class standard.
In terms of space the Vitara Brezza is quite spacious despite being under 4m and it has a generous wheelbase thus three at the back is no issue. Boot capacity is 328 litres which can be increased with 60:40 spilt rear seat which is useful. The Vitara Brezza is also quite practical with a fairly large door pockets, coat hanger, large glovebox, seat undertray, sliding armrest etc.
Ok, what about features?
I was about to get to that. The interiors are stocked with plenty of gadgetry such as the SmartPlay infotainment system with its touchscreen, an automatic AC, steering mounted audio and phone controls, Apple CarPlay, navigation, mirrorlink, reverse camera, cooled glovebox, rain sensing wipers, auto headlamps, cruise control, push button start/stop etc. Do note that majority of these features are on the top-end ZDI+ trim level.
Right, want to know how it drives now
At the moment there is only one option being the 1.3 diesel with 89 bhp and 200Nm of torque. This engine needs no introduction as it does duty in the majority of the other Maruti cars. If you think it is underpowered then you are wrong as just like the S-Cross with the same engine, it is fairly impressive. Go past the initial turbo-lag and past 2000 rpm the strong mid-range kicks in giving the Brezza the grunt it needs. Power deliver is strong at this point and it does not trail off giving it strong cruising abilities.
In the city at low speeds, dealing traffic there is sufficient bottom-end punch to keep you going without working the gearbox a lot. It is only when you need that sudden rush of power that you have to downshift. Speaking of which the slick 5- speed manual is precise in shift quality plus the clutch is light and a boon in traffic. The steering too is light which makes it an effortless drive in the city.
Out on the highway as said earlier the Brezza with its strong mid-range makes it an excellent cruiser-in fact it is the happiest here. It does not get out of breath when pushed hard and it gets to big triple digit speeds at ease. What you will also like is the composure at these speeds which gives you confidence. Another aspect that buyers will endear to is the ride as it is among the best Maruti cars here. Plus the refinement is spot-on and it drives less like an SUV being more of a crossover with very less body roll.
Kitna deti hai?
Ah yes, the official figure is 24.3 kmpl which makes it the most efficient in its class. During our tests with hard driving we got 15-16 kmpl but on the highway we managed a comfortable 18 kmpl.
So what do you think finally?
The fact that it is a Maruti and a compact SUV would have been enough to give it strong sales but go beyond that and the Brezza is an impressive product. Maruti took its own sweet time to enter this segment space but it has used the time well as the Vitara Brezza is a competent package that delivers. Its strengths include looks, space, features, efficiency, ride quality yet it also does fairly well in other areas. Being aggressively priced it offers excellent value plus later a petrol version will only increase its appeal. For the moment, if you are in the market for a compact SUV, the Vitara Brezza is something that is hard to ignore. Yes, do believe the hype.
Check out the Vitara Brezza Image gallery here
Words and photography- Somnath Chatterjee