The Hyundai Grand Creta sweet spot for price and performance

The 2023 Hyundai Grand Creta is a luxurious step up from its more diminutive Creta sibling. It comes with an opulent and expansive interior that caters to the needs and desires of families and thrill-seekers alike. Featuring an impressive seven-seat layout, the Grand Creta is available in two trim levels – Executive and Elite – each with its own unique set of features and amenities to delight and entice.

With a choice of petrol and diesel, drivers can enjoy the perfect combination of power and efficiency to suit their needs. Indeed, the Grand Creta represents a true sweet spot in terms of price and performance, providing an unbeatable driving experience for those whose budgets don't quite stretch to the lofty heights of the Santa Fe, which typically retails for anywhere between R800,000-R900,000.

The new Grand Creta maintains the familiar long bonnet and rounded front edges that have become iconic features of its design. This new iteration, however, introduces a suite of modern upgrades, including LED lighting complete with daytime running lights and a reverse grille accented with an attractive chrome garnish. While changes to the rear of the vehicle are relatively modest, discerning onlookers will note the addition of chrome exhaust tips and LED rear lighting, both enhancing the vehicle's already impressive aesthetics.

Notably, Hyundai stretched the Grand Creta's length to 4,500mm to accommodate its third seating row, representing an increase of 200mm from the standard five-seat Creta. Both grades of the Grand Creta receive their own unique style of alloy wheels, and the vehicle's side profile is reminiscent of the recently released Tucson.

The dashboard eschews needless complexity in favor of a clean and uncluttered design. The ventilation controls are thoughtfully placed for maximum convenience and ease of access. Meanwhile, the infotainment system is seamlessly integrated into the dash, providing drivers with a color touchscreen interface that is both intuitive and user-friendly.

The new Grand Creta comes standard with a state-of-the-art infotainment system. Leather seats are standard on all models, including the base-level Executive, and so are cruise control, wireless phone charging, Drive Mode Select, etc. But for those seeking an even more luxurious driving experience, the Elite offers a wealth of additional amenities, such as auto climate control, a panoramic sunroof, mood lighting, a rear window shade, a fully digital instrument cluster, and a push-button start.

Available in two engine choices: a 2.0 Smartstream petrol and a 1.5 turbo diesel engine. While both engines have their merits, the latter truly shines, offering gutsy performance and unparalleled efficiency. Mated to a smooth and responsive six-speed automatic transmission, this engine musters an impressive 85kW and 250Nm.

When paired with sport mode, it truly comes into its own, delivering lightning-quick throttle response and exhilarating acceleration. But perhaps the engine's most impressive feature is its frugality, as it sips fuel at an astonishingly low rate of just 5.7l / 100km (with no passengers)- even less than the factory-quoted 6.5l. If that’s not enough, new Creta buyers can refill the tank 30 times for free.

When compared to the petrol Grand Creta, powered by a 2.0l naturally aspirated engine with outputs of 117kW and 191Nm and a claimed consumption of 8.5l / 100km, it's clear that the diesel is the better option - especially in these times of soaring fuel prices.

The price of the base Executive 2.0 manual petrol starts at R477,900, which jumps to R592,900 for the range-topping Elite 1.5 auto diesel. The Hyundai Grand Creta range offers reassurance to buyers with Hyundai's standard 7-year / 200,000km manufacturer warranty and 4-year / 60,000km service plan, complemented by 7-year / 150,000km roadside assistance. (Prices correct at time of publication.)

Are you a petrol head? Love reading about the cars available on South Africa’s roads? Be sure to check out the Reviews section of our blog. Every month we review two different car models. Click here to check it out.

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