Compact SUVs are all the craze within the Indian auto house. The previous couple of years have seen this section has grown and the way. In response to JATO Dynamics, Hyundai bought over 1.18 lakh Cretas in FY2022, whereas Kia bought over 95,000 items of the Seltos throughout the identical interval. SUVs now make for about 50 per cent of the overall passenger car section and compact SUVs are a serious contributor to the identical. No marvel then, we now have an inflow of competitors within the type of two new Europeans – Volkswagen Taigun and the Skoda Kushaq – and a British-Chinese language providing – the MG Astor. There’s the Maruti Suzuki S-Cross and Nissan Kicks too, however each fashions are barely outdated and fewer related now. And so, Pratik, Shubham and I have been out on the search to seek out which of those prime SUVs really qualifies to be one of the best within the section in our mega compact SUV shootout.
We’ve got 5 parameters by way of Eight classes together with exterior and inside design, house, efficiency, trip and dealing with, security, options, and worth for cash. Based mostly on these classes, we can be measuring every of those compact SUVs to decide on the last word winner. The Kia Seltos is our reigning champion. However the final time it received, it solely had the Hyundai Creta to beat. So can it nonetheless defend its title?
Whereas the design language of any car is a private desire, some types are extra typical than others. Each the Kia Seltos and Hyundai Creta are nicely accepted available in the market. Nevertheless it’s a love-it-or-hate-it affair with the Creta. The design language is polarising however that is hardly dented the section chief’s gross sales. Compared, the Seltos will get a pointy and well-balanced design. It is undoubtedly aged nicely and appears extra modern than a number of the newer choices.
Some may say the MG Astor shouldn’t be the best-looking automotive right here. However the unconventional design works in its favour with the easy character traces and crossover stance. What additionally works in its favour is the truth that it is the widest, longest and tallest automotive right here. Sure! Seems to be could be misleading. However on the subject of preserving it easy and efficient, the Europeans handle to do it higher. The Volkswagen Taigun and the Skoda Kushaq share the identical underpinnings however could not be extra completely different in look. Easy traces, boxy stance and simply the correct amount of chrome. You will not go fallacious with both of them.
By way of proportions, the Creta seems as the biggest SUV however the Seltos and Astor stand out with a stronger highway presence. The Taigun and Kushaq come throughout as a tad bit small as compared and a complete 100 mm shorter than the Astor. Very nicely then, we have now to agree that the Astor and the Seltos are the best-looking vehicles right here and rating the highest factors for the proper styling and proportions.
Exterior Design Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 3.5/5 2.5/5 3/5 9
Seltos 4/5 4/5 3.5/5 11.5
Taigun 3/5 4/5 3.5/5 10.5
Kushaq 3.5/5 3/5 3/5 9.5
Astor 3.5/5 4/5 4/5 11.5
All 5 SUVs really feel premium and there’s a beneficiant quantity of soppy contact materials throughout the cabin. The Creta and Seltos really feel a notch up with the best way the cabin has been executed. Each SUVs have their very own set of distinctive options. The dashboard provides a neat and clutter-free design on the Creta, whereas the plastics, textures and format really feel premium on the Seltos. Nonetheless, Creta does have the higher hand on the subject of offering an total premium expertise.
The Taigun and Kushaq hold issues elegant with straight traces and huge screens. However the soft-touch supplies are lacking and that is actually fairly shocking. The Kushaq comes throughout as extra govt whereas the Taigun’s inside is extra vibrant, particularly with that pink ambient lighting. The construct is hard and durable on each vehicles however they do miss out on the plush really feel that the rivals have to supply. We’d’ve appreciated to go extra “wow” and fewer “eh” on the Taigun and Kushaq.
However on the subject of plush, the MG Astor manages to do it one of the best. It will get the nicest cabin with loads of smooth touchpoints on the dashboard, across the centre console and even door pads. All the weather are available in fairly fantastically, particularly within the Sangria Crimson color supplied with the turbo trim. The large panoramic sunroof and the minimal use of chrome within the cabin hold issues easy but elegant.
So far as ergonomics go the Seltos get well-bolstered entrance seats however they do really feel a tad too agency, whereas the Creta’s seats provide higher cushioning. The MG Astor is sort of snug too however it’s the Taigun and Kushaq that get essentially the most supportive seats. There’s ample again, shoulder and lateral assist however these aren’t the widest seats within the section, which can be bothersome for drivers with extra girth.
The Taigun and Kushaq are additionally the one SUVs right here to get a rake and reach-adjustable steering wheel, which is lacking from the competitors.
Inside Design Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 4/5 4/5 3.5/5 11.5
Seltos 3.5/5 3.5/5 3.5/5 10.5
Taigun 3/5 3/5 3/5 9
Kushaq 3/5 3/5 3/5 9
Astor 3.5/5 4/5 4/5 11.5
Mannequin MG Astor Hyundai Creta Kia Seltos VW Taigun Skoda Kushaq
Size 4,323 mm 4,300 mm 4,315 mm 4,221 mm 4,225 mm
Width 1,809 mm 1,790 mm 1,800 mm 1,760 mm 1,760 mm
Peak 1,650 mm 1,612 mm 1,645 mm 1,612 mm 1,612 mm
Wheelbase 2,585 mm 2,610 mm 2,610 mm 2,651 mm 2651 mm
Weight 1,380 kg 1,323 kg 1,321 kg 1,310 kg 1,305 kg
Floor Clearance 185 mm 190 mm 190 mm 188 mm 188 mm
However which SUV can really seat three in consolation? Time to place our versatile sizes to good use. First up is the Taigun, which might seat two in consolation however three turns into a squeeze. It is a related case with the Kushaq too. Each vehicles provide the least width within the section and it exhibits. Nonetheless, there’s loads of headroom and legroom on provide. Issues are pretty extra snug on the Kia Seltos for 3 folks however the shoulders brush towards one another. However issues actually get spacious on the Astor. The panoramic sunroof additional provides to the ethereal really feel and it does get a brownie level for that. But when backseat consolation is what you crave on this house, the Creta is essentially the most spectacular right here. It’s the widest automotive in its class and that does translate to the higher cabin house on the rear too.
And whereas we’re speaking about house, the Astor impresses right here with a 470-litre boot, towards the 433-litre boot on the Creta and Seltos. The Taigun and Kushaq underscore right here with the comparatively smaller 385-litre boot capability. The MG Astor has one other win up its sleeve then and the Europeans have some catching as much as do.
Hyundai Creta Kia Seltos VW Taigun Skoda Kushaq MG Astor
433 litres 433 litres 385 litres 385 litres 470 litres
Area Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 4.5 4 4 12.5
Seltos 4 4 4 12
Taigun 3 3 3.5 9.5
Kushaq 3 3 3 9
Astor 4 3.5 4 11.5
Engine and Efficiency
To this point, the Astor is main in design, house and luxury. Nonetheless, issues get fascinating from right here on, as we transfer to the subsequent chapter in our comparability that would make the Koreans and Germans shine. Whereas the Astor will get the smallest engine right here, it makes the identical energy because the Creta and Seltos with their 1.4-litre turbo items. Nonetheless, the Kushaq-Taigun duo look stronger with their 1.5-litre TSI engines making 10 horses greater than the opposite three.
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Energy figures apart, all of the 5 compact SUVs are extraordinarily completely different on the subject of the drive. The Astor is the one SUV on this shootout with a three-cylinder set-up. The linear energy supply retains issues easy and something between 1,500 and a pair of,000 rpm, provides an ample quantity of sprint. The throttle response is respectable as a mild faucet to the pedal is sufficient to get issues shifting. The 6-speed torque converter, once more the one one within the section, provides seamless shifts that go unnoticeable. At decrease speeds, the transmission behaves subdued. Nonetheless, the Aisin-sourced gearbox exhibits lag when pushed laborious you and overtaking must be deliberate. We regularly switched to the guide mode for higher management and the absence of paddle shifters is felt right here essentially the most.
The Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos basically are sister items with a unique pores and skin. However the Creta will get solely a 7-speed DCT whereas the Seltos will get each 6-speed guide and 7-speed DCT gearbox choices. There’s additionally the choice of the 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol motor on each SUVs with a 6-speed guide and CVT transmissions. Each the Koreans are fairly evenly matched in outright efficiency. The turbo engines have a robust enhance which is reassuring and joyous.
But when efficiency is what you crave then the Volkswagen Taigun and the Skoda Kushaq are your prime picks. Each vehicles are absolute hoots to drive on this 1.5-litre turbo petrol bundle. It takes some effort to construct energy at low speeds however the SUVs are nonetheless the quickest off the road. The 1.5 TSI shines between 2,500 rpm all the best way to six,000 rpm and the pull is simply phenomenal. The DSG is definitely the slickest automated gearbox on this comparability and provides seamless shifts, which places it considerably forward of the Astor, whereas the Creta and the Seltos do come moderately shut with their very own DCTs.
However you additionally get the 1.0-litre turbo petrol that regardless of its small output has simply sufficient grunt to maintain you content. It is also extra comparable with the naturally aspirated engines on the Creta, Seltos and the Astor. The mid-range is most responsive right here too and far enjoyable could be had if you happen to go for the 6-speed guide, whereas the 6-speed torque converter is surprisingly responsive and dare I say, fairly dependable. What additionally works for the Taigun and Kushaq is the small footprint. The vehicles are really compact and that is precisely why they’re essentially the most entertaining to drive.
Within the metropolis, you’ll just like the 1.4-litre motor on the Creta and Seltos for its low-end energy supply, whereas the Astor provides a mixture of energy and comfortability. However the Europeans – boy oh boy – they’re essentially the most entertaining off the lot.
Efficiency Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 4 3.5 4 11.5
Seltos 4 4 4 12
Taigun 4.5 4.5 4.5 13.5
Kushaq 4 4.5 4.5 13
Astor 3 3 3.5 9.5
Experience & Dealing with
All 5 vehicles are tuned in a different way for dealing with and it actually relies on what you might be in search of when deciding on a compact SUV. The Kia Seltos is the sportier Korean right here. The suspension setup is on the stiffer facet and the steering too could be very direct. It is able to tackle the twisty roads and you will be proud of the suggestions. However that does take a toll on trip high quality as these thuds and bumps are felt extra strongly by the passengers within the cabin. That is the place the Hyundai Creta ticks the proper containers. It has a “smooth” edge and strikes a really well-measured steadiness between trip and dealing with. The suspension setup is only a bit softer however the physique roll is nicely contained. Although the Creta is much less aggressive with its dynamics, it feels extra settled and cozy on our roads and has a plusher trip high quality. The steering suggestions is kind of the identical as Seltos however you do really feel extra laid again within the Hyundai.
The MG Astor has been tuned in the direction of consolation and the trip high quality is plush, particularly at low speeds. It actually glides by way of dangerous roads with ease however provided that you drive at double-digit speeds. The triple-digit expertise shouldn’t be confidence-inspiring, making it unnerving round corners. A heavy foot can even upshot Astor’s gasoline consumption, which is not conducive to the present scenario. Nonetheless, the chunkier 215-section Continental tyres stunned us providing important grip and labored nicely with the all-disc brakes slicing off pace meticulously and offering good chew.
The Taigun and Kushaq are undoubtedly one of the best driver’s vehicles on this house however it’s the Taigun that shines right here a bit extra. The chassis simply helps that engine urging you to push and push, particularly round a bend. The steering provides loads of suggestions, making the drive a rewarding expertise. And we do just like the trip high quality on each these vehicles, even when it is on a barely firmer facet however it gobbles dangerous roads with ease. The Taigun and Kushaq additionally provide higher braking means regardless of the dearth of rear disc brakes, whereas the Creta, Seltos and the Astor provide all 4 disc brakes however do not provide the identical confidence because the Europeans.
Experience & Dealing with Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 4 3.5 3.5 11
Seltos 4 3.5 4 11.5
Taigun 4.5 4.5 4.5 13.5
Kushaq 4 4.5 4.5 13
Astor 3 2.5 3 8.5
On the protection entrance, all compact SUVs get the necessities together with six airbags, ABS with EBD, ESC, hill begin help and baby seat mounts. The Seltos advantages from entrance parking sensors, whereas the Astor comes with a 360-degree parking digicam as a part of its lengthy checklist of security aids. Talking of which, the Astor provides Stage 2 Autonomous driving or ADAS that brings options like adaptive cruise management, ahead collision warning, lane hold help, and automated emergency braking, all segment-first options. Our private favourites are pedestrian detect and pace signal recognition. It is also the one automotive right here to get hill descent management.
So far as the International NCAP crash take a look at outcomes go, the Kia Seltos and the Hyundai Creta scored a disappointing Three stars for grownup occupant safety, whereas the Seltos obtained a good decrease 2-star score for baby occupant safety. The Creta fared higher as compared receiving Three stars. The VW Taigun, Skoda Kushaq and the MG Astor are but to be examined by the International NCAP.
Security Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 3 3 3 9
Seltos 3 2.5 3 8.5
Taigun 3.5 4 3.5 11
Kushaq 3.5 4 3.5 11
Astor 4 3.5 4 11.5
On the function entrance, all SUVs get auto LED headlamps, cornering lights, push-button start-stop, local weather management with rear AC vents, cruise management in addition to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. The Taigun will get a digital instrument console, which the Kushaq misses out on, whereas each vehicles get manually adjustable entrance seats, the ventilated entrance seats are particular to the Kushaq, which is a bummer. However each SUVs include Lively Cylinder Know-how on the 1.5 TSI, which is segment-first. However, Hyundai and Kia go all out on the subject of peppering their vehicles with options. You do get an electrically adjustable driver’s seat, air flow, and even a blind view monitor, whereas the Creta does one-up with an digital parking brake and a panoramic sunroof. Each vehicles additionally get the PM2.5 air filter.
The Astor is fairly loaded too and comes with that quirky AI assistant on the dashboard. It is not essentially the most responsive however is a enjoyable addition… Nonetheless, the Astor misses out on an auto-dimming mirror, auto start-stop and wi-fi charging. A minor inconvenience, proper? However that huge panoramic sunroof will certainly be liked by all within the household. For the audiophiles, the Seltos’ Bose sound system is one of the best within the enterprise, adopted by the Kushaq which provides a greater sound high quality. All 5 compact SUVs include related automotive know-how and you may monitor them and analyse driving information utilizing the apps in your smartphones.
Options Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 4/5 3.5/5 3.5/5 11
Seltos 3.5/5 3.5/5 3.5/5 10.5
Taigun 3/5 3/5 3.5/5 9.5
Kushaq 3.5/5 3.5/5 3.5/5 10.5
Astor 3.5/5 3.5/5 4/5 11
Variants & Pricing
(Overlay value desk right here)
The MG Astor enters at a decrease entry value level towards its rivals, however Hyundai and Kia certainly give the cash’s value with a slew of variants to select from. Kia can be the one automaker that has rejigged the variant line-up persistently attempting so as to add extra worth to the Seltos vary and including extra options to the decrease variants. If ready instances are one thing you might be eager to know, the Hyundai Creta undoubtedly has the upper demand with a time of about 4-5 months as per sellers, whereas the Seltos has a ready time of 2-Three months. The Astor within the non-ADAS guise could be delivered in about 15-20 days, whereas the ADAS model has a ready interval of 3-Four months… The Taigun and Kushaq even have a ready interval of a couple of month every.
VFM Shubham Sameer Pratik Whole /15
Creta 4 3.5 3.5 11
Seltos 4.5 3.5 3.5 11.5
Taigun 3.5 4 3.5 11
Kushaq 3.5 3.5 3.5 10.5
Astor 3.5 4 3.5 11
The compact SUV section is sufficiently big for every of those SUVs to co-exist. The Creta and Seltos are well-packaged choices however rating low on security… The Taigun and Kushaq are sensible drivers’ vehicles however may with a bit more room. The Astor is nicely packaged and good for consolation and nice on tech-wizardry. You will not go fallacious with both of them. So it actually relies on what you might be in search of as a buyer. Efficiency, consolation or tech wizardry. So, which is the last word winner? Let’s take a leaderboard to seek out out.
Leaderboard Exterior Design Inside Design Area Efficiency Experience & Dealing with Security Options VFM Whole
Creta 9 11.5 12.5 11.5 11 9 11 11 86.5
Seltos 11.5 10.5 12 12 11.5 9 10.5 11.5 88
Taigun 10.5 9 9.5 13.5 13.5 11 9.5 11 87.5
Kushaq 9.5 9 9 13 13 11 10.5 10.5 85.5
Astor 11.5 11.5 11.5 9.5 8.5 11.5 11 11 86
And the compact SUV that wins this comparability is the Kia Seltos. With seems to be which might be sharp as ever, a cabin that is loaded on each entrance, and a drive that retains the fanatic and the household man completely happy, the Seltos aces on a number of fronts and turns into the winner of our comparability, defending its title.