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Old 5th January 2016, 13:16   #1
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Default Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!

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Index


Preface

Prologue: The Last Ride

Chapter 1: Revamped Requirements

Chapter 2: The Contenders
Chapter 2.1: Predicament of pulmonary artery | Why S-Cross?
Chapter 2.2: Locus of Control |Influencing Key stakeholders
Chapter 2.3: Sizing up|Comparison to previous rides
Interlude
  • NEXA Pre-Purchase Experience
  • Reflections
  • Delivery Experience
Chapter 3: Ownership Review Summary
Chapter 3.1: Shoes does matter | Alloy and Tyre Upgrade
Chapter 3.2: Dissecting the Drive | Driving Experience
Chapter 3.3: Can't take my ICE..err..eyes off | In Car Entertainment Review
Chapter 3.4: Face Value | Exterior Review
Chapter 3.5: Inner Circle| Interior Review
Interlude
  • Expressions
  • Your Top 10 Questions

Chapter 4: Modifications and Add-ons - Starts Feb 2016




Note: This is my first ownership review thread in Tbhp; Hope you like it

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 19:04.
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Old 5th January 2016, 14:46   #2
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My last car, a 2013 Skoda Rapid 1.6 TDI – nicknamed ‘Penguin’ was a show stealer both when standing still and running hard. I had named her Penguin, as reference to the Black and White theme the entire car was running. All major details on modification done, is available in the below link. Any References below to the ‘Penguin’ indicates my Rapid.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/modifi...per-tonne.html (My Modded Skoda Rapid: Now, 166 BHP / 351 Nm / 119 Whp per Tonne)


I had earlier booked an Ford Aspire Titanium(O) 1.5 TDCI as a second car sometime in Aug end 2015. It had a waiting period of 2 months. My end of Sept, I was so impressed by the all new Figo, that I moved my Aspire booking to Figo 1.5 TDCI Titanium, which again carried a waiting period of 45 days.

Sometime in mid Nov 2015, there was huge rainfall in Chennai, and my house got flooded, we were rendered immobile for 3 days, however the Rapid survived that. I quickly understood that buying another hatch / sedan will not make sense, since both cars will face the same issue in case of flooding / water logging.

On 29th Nov 2015, I went to Ford and cancelled the Figo Booking. I was in no real hurry, since it was only a second car. I had planned to wait for the Auto expo to see if something exciting turns up. Else, I was planning to get some life style vehicle like Thar or maybe a Hatch on stilts (i20 active).

Day 0 (Tue, 1st Dec 2015)

It had rained hard the previous night (30th Nov). I woke up to the clattering of rain drops over our window. I looked out and the streets had already started accumulating water. I had a busy day ahead with calls starting from 9 AM onwards. I got ready, however with rain pelting down without respite, I was skeptical to reach office on time. Hence I planned to take the 9 AM call from Home. At that time I was still able to see the roads outside my house, with only large puddles here and there. In a matter of 2 hours, the roads were completely submerged! With about half feet of water running through the streets, and the sky determined to ravage through rest of the day, I quickly sent out notice to my Office for work from Home option. As I watched in silence the fury of rain, pelting out with force on everything exposed, my thoughts back tracked one week before. Similar scenes, and similar situation, as Déjà vu swept past one side of my brain, the other side got ready for bracing the odds, again!
I quickly asked my wife and kids to get ready. We were losing time, it was already 12:00 noon and water level outside was slowly on the rise. Some of our adjoining streets were at a lower level than us. In order to hit the main road, we would need to navigate through them. My wife quickly read the tension in my words, and packed up everything for their departure in quick time.

As I opened the main door, as always, my eyes fell upon the ever smiling front grill of The Penguin aka Skoda Rapid. I quickly, dusted off her windshield, as I very well know that Wiper’s will be on overload for that day. My crank was greeted by familiar noisy, crude, Diesel Clatter. There was less time to lose, and hence, I hurriedly reversed the car. As my family got in, I splashed through my streets out towards the main road. One stretch before the main road was extremely bad, with water flowing over bonnet. Somehow, My Penguin wafted out its way through. The wet clutch gave judders, sending panic wave across the occupants. (little they know about mechanics). The Streets bore deserted look, except for some critical sections where Traffic was overflowing. There were some areas where, water was literally running across the roads. Somehow I managed to wade car get my family to my in laws place. I promised to call them back after I return to my home. While coming back the Penguin got locked up in an extremely busy road junction with heavy water logging. Rapid has a stock GC of 165 mm. However i had a 205/55 section tyre, and slightly lowered stance. This which made me extremely nervous, whenever I was standing in still water. As I revved her back to my street, water level had gone up, the Penguin splashed its way out of it like a True Champ. I came back at 2:30 PM; after the customary call to wife, sat down for Lunch. As I was having it, I felt something wet my feet. I looked down to see water flowing from the side door. I fastened my Lunch and my family got together in trying to wane off the impossible.

Fresh from our learnings in last week floods, we quickly made all the smart moves. All portable electronics like Televisions, Desktop, Speakers, Stabilizers, moved to 1st floor. Scavenged wood from the furniture’s lost in previous floods, were used to elevate the existing furniture and Large home appliances. Inverter, Battery elevated with large chairs. All Electrical connections unplugged. All items, from lower shelves, Gas stove, Cylinders, Drinking Water were all moved up. Water in overhead tank completely filled, Motors tied with Bubble wrap etcc. My neighbors place, which was recently done up, sat about 2 ft higher than our own Parking Lot. I spoke to them and decided to have the Penguin parked there. With Rain pelting around like there was no tomorrow, the visibility inside car was zilch. I carefully reversed her, climbed the steep ramp and parked her. I put the car on Gear and avoided using the Hand Brake. Ensured all Windows, were closed, tied in a Plastic sheet around the exhaust, turned around and walked. Three steps and I paused, the rain was still striking hard, I was fully drenched, with water dripping down by eye lashes, I saw her, she was gleaming (Thanks to the rain).

A Saying flashed my mind "If you don’t look back at your car after you park it, you’ve bought the wrong car

Little did I know, that was the last time I could drive her. One Last Drive, in the rain, so that the tears couldn't be seen at all.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1103.jpg

Last edited by GTO : 12th January 2016 at 08:23. Reason: Merging
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Old 5th January 2016, 16:36   #3
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Default Chapter 1: Revamped Requirements

Day 16 (Thu, 17th Dec 2015)

By this time, it was ascertained that Penguin was a Total Loss. We needed a car quickly, however was also skeptical of the fact that most yards in Chennai were flooded hence the chances of getting a Flood ravaged car were high. Hence I kick started the hunting process all over again. In a way, my confusion in last two months with regards to booking and cancelling made me quite aware of most cars and their ongoing offers.

Due to the floods, I was hit by heavy financial losses; hence I had to compromise on few things in my car buying decision. For starts, any petrol car, however good they may be, was de-scoped. Any Life Style / Weekend vehicle like the Thar or Gurkha were also scrapped. My Requirements shrunk, so did my options. Also, being a primary car, it had a different set of requirements unlike the ones I had previously imagined when booking the Aspire / Figo. Finally decided to be extremely clear on what I really need, so that I don’t end up getting confused again.

Thing that i absolutely care:

Power – No point, going down on what I have already tasted. It had as to be equal or more than the 1.6 TDI mill, anything else, is most likely to be dropped off

Safety Kit – ABS, Air Bags, EBD Must, however anything more like TCS or more Airbags are welcome if they manage to create a reasonable value proposition.

Space – With Kids growing up, the need to prioritize Space became quite significant. I need a car that can seat 5 comfortably.

Handling, Dynamics & Ride Quality – Should be above average, if possible, on par with VAG group. Willing to sacrifice few points on Handling and Dynamics for above average Ride Quality – Should be better than Rapid at least

Boot Space – Didn’t mind losing few liters’ of Boot space for Good Rear seat space and comfort. Anything more than 300 Liters should be ok, the more the better

GC – Ground Clearance became the talking point for entire Chennai enthusiasts during the Floods. Also, most of the roads, save the main ones are completely devastated due the rains. The car should have more than 175 mm of GC, more the better, as long as the car doesn’t look like it is on stilts

Mod Potential – Can live without believing in God, but can’t live without manifesting a Mod! No point in investing in a car which is not remap-friendly or on the one that doesn’t have after-market support.

After Sales Service – After done and dusted with Skoda and after the numerous stories on VW, decided this also needs to be relatively hassle free and cheap. Also, it became imperative that the brand of car have more than 2-3 dealerships to reduce my risk in terms of parts availability!

Waiting Period – Needed a car as quickly as possible, at the same time, I was willing to give some time to get the car that appeals to my heart. Hence was willing to wait for a period of max 1 month

Size - Didn’t prefer the vehicle to be too big, as parking in my current place would be real job! Was ok with any class of Vehicle – Hatch or Sedan or Crossover or Mini SUV or MUV as long as it is less than 15 ft in Length and 6 ft in Breadth

Budget – Was looking at something between 10L - 12L OTR, Chennai. +/- 1L was ok. Not really keen on pre-owned stuff.


Things that didn’t matter

All Interior Features / creature comforts – Stock Music System, No. of speakers, Navigation, Rear View Camera, keyless entry, Leather Upholstery or Chrome Door Handles !

A/C – As long as it is an Air Conditioner that can provide me some respite from Chennai Heat, I was ok. Didn’t really mind it being Manual or Auto or Dual Zone

Exterior Looks and Appeal – No problem, as long as it didn’t kill anyone.

Interior Quality – Beggars cannot be choosers! I was ok even if the Interior dated back to 70’s

Gearshift – Didn’t mind getting cars with notchy, rubbery gear shifts. Although I love shifting gears, I left this part under the compromise arena.


Pretty simple and straight forward set of requirements, at least I feel so. However when I went to the market, I found it hard to believe that my options were limited to just 4 Cars when we are looking at 12+ Major Brands doing business here !

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Last edited by Mi10 : 6th January 2016 at 19:18.
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Old 5th January 2016, 23:42   #4
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Default Chapter 2: The Contenders

Day 17 (Fri, 18th Dec 2015)

Based on the above Filters my list narrowed down to four cars, apparently they all belong to the Compact SUV / Cross over genre.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-xo-comparo.jpg
AS(S) Matters!


Ford Ecosport 1.5 TDCI

Power – The All new Ecosport sported a improved Power delivery along with some changes to the Gear ratio. This made the 99 PS 1.5 TDCI mill seem very linear and quite peppy.

Safety Kit – Top end had everything on offer including 6 airbags along with ABS + EBD.

Space – The Front seat we good, they had nice hugging seats along with good leg and head room. However the rear seat was extremely cramped with 3 adults. The Sloping window line made a claustrophobic feel when seated in rear

Handling, Dynamics & Ride Quality – Ford does know to make a thing or two on suspension! Hands down the best compact SUV when it comes to Handling and Dynamics. The Ride quality is reasonable but not really something like a Duster or a Creta !

Boot Space – 346 Liters and expandable to 750 L. Sufficient, considering that they have managed to build this under 4M length. However I would have preferred a better rear bench space by dropping few liters in Boot

GC – 200 mm and it does manage to put up a very elegant and urban look. Good Job !

Mod Potential – My earlier conversations with code6 folks revealed the PITA aspect of remapping the 1.5 TDCI ECU. I don’t think this new Eco sport is an exception. Also, the after-market support for aesthetic mods aren’t huge with regard to a Ford

After Sales Service – With the Chennai plant producing Ecosport, I don’t think Parts availability will be an issue. From my earlier experience of owing a Fiesta 1.6 S, I should say Ford Service in Chennai is above average. At least not as bad as a Skoda!

Waiting Period – 30-45 day waiting period, depending on color and Trim

Size – Compact, and easily fits my garage.

Budget – Well under Budget, probably can spend on sprucing up the looks also



Duster / Terrano DCI 110 ps


Power – Decent power with good lag. Although the short gearbox ratios helped them ease a bit. However, it didn’t really feel fast enough – even if I compare the Stock Rapid.

Safety Kit – Top end had standard package dual airbags along with ABS + EBD.

Space – The Front seat were broad and looked like a mini sofa. Very relaxed position with respect the way the seats are shaped. The Rear has good space for 2 adults, however when the third one entered, the middle seat space was intruded by the rear AC vent panel. The middle passenger simply couldn’t sit there without hitting the legs of the other two passengers.

Handling, Dynamics & Ride Quality – Handles like a Large Hatch, wasn’t too impressed, coming after the Ecosport TD. The Ride quality was both Supple and pliant. It soaked up bumps like there was nothing! Superb Ride quality! ‘Thank you’ said, my spine

Boot Space – With 475 litres boot space, this was almost on par with the Rapid. Had enough room for anything you throw at it. It is also easy to load and unload. However it doesn’t have 60:40 split seats, which I feel every compact SUV / crossover should have!

GC – 205 mm and makes full use of it. Wades in and out through most places where you’d think with a sedan ! Exceptional!

Mod Potential – Remap Friendly and Being old in the market, makes the job easy for me. Event he Duster Explorer Edition was very good looking and appealing with subtle mods. Was even contemplating a Snorkel and a lift kit

After Sales Service – Hearing lot of not so great stories about Nissan and Renault. However don’t have any first-hand experience at it. However there were only 3 dealers for the entire city and only one in near proximity was an area of concern

Waiting Period – 1-2 week Delivery period. No issues. However, I was skeptical that lot of dusters and Terranos were staying put in Yard due to lull in sales recently. Hence chances of Flood affected cars was high.

Size – Looks bulky and almost resembles a Bear ! However no problems with respect to overall size; easily fits my garage.

Budget – After discounts it did come under my Budget.



S Cross 1.6 DDIS 320

Power – Almost as fast the stock Rapid. The tune however was more towards the mid and top end. The Downside however is the turbo lag and some average performance in lower revvs.

Safety Kit – All variants had dual airbags, ABS + EBD and all wheel Discs. The 1.6 Version also has Ventilated Discs for the front ! Me likey

Space – The Front seat were very good, good lumbar and thigh support and ample space to have your toddler in your lap ! The Rear seat was above average however was much better than Ecosport and Duster. However, the Transmission tunnel runs in eroding into the leg space of the rear middle passenger very much like the Rapid.

Handling, Dynamics & Ride Quality – If there was one Suzuki which I love for Handling, it has to be this one! Sudden Maneuvers were handled very well. Mature and quite close to VAG level dynamics. However still has a long way in catching up with Fords and Fiats ! The Ride quality on low speeds is below average, however the suspension soaks up bumps pretty well post 50 kmph. I think the suspension is reasonably stiff!

Boot Space – 353 Liters and expandable to 810 L. Although less for a car of this size and price, it had good squarish design and no unwanted cervices or wheel arches intrusion. However, if you are using the parcel tray, then the area above it becomes literally unusable and hence overall boot space can be called just average !

GC – 180 mm only and not really even close to the 200 and 205 mm being offered by Ecosport and Duster ! This makes the car look like an overgrown Hatch than a Crossover or a Mini SUV. While the good side is that it can handle close to a sedan, the obvious question of treading the middle ground (not a hatch not a cross over) will always be topic of discussion

Mod Potential – We have seen enough 1.3 MJD in DDIS trim being remapped at will. My only question to folks at was ‘is it possible to remap the 1.6 DDIS 320?’ With a positive response from their end, the next thing was aftermarket support. Suzuki and Aftermarket parts are like Idly and Chutney for south Indians! I will leave it at that

After Sales Service – With Maruthi opening excusive NEXA outlets for its so called premium cars, I feel there will be some respite in the usual fish market like scenario in MUL service centers. Jokes apart, there are 4-5 key dealers for Maruthi in Chennai; all of them proven, and huge in their own way. At least, I don’t have to depend on one dealer to assist me in terms of contingency!

Waiting Period – Immediate Delivery depending on Color and Trim, New stocks to arrive only in Feb. It was very clear that there was a stock clearance that needs to happen on Dec.

Size – Marginally bigger than the rapid by Breadth; Marginally shorter than the Rapid by Length and Marginally Taller than the Rapid my height.

Budget – With Stock Clearance on, I know this car needs to be negotiated hard. It was well over the budget by at least couple of Lacs even for the base version. Top end was treading into XUV 500 W6 territory


Creta 1.6 CRDI

Power – Extremely smooth and refined power plant. Same engine as the Verna, however it packs the same punch in Creta! The Power is seamless, reasonably linear at the same time, giving you a chance to experience Torque in a refined and polished way.

Safety Kit – Top end is loaded to the brim with 6 Airbags, ABS+EBD which also has TCS ! Impressive! However the Top end Creta also runs into different competition from a pricing stand point. The SX which was the entry package for 1.6L had dual airbags, ABS+EBD.

Space – The Front seat were nice and plush, very luxurious and extremely welcoming. However in the rear, the space is lesser when compared to the S Cross or the Duster. It still is better than the ecosport. The Creta actually is marginally broader and also has very less transmission hump, however it still ends up with less than expected cabin space. .

Handling, Dynamics & Ride Quality – Handles much better for a Hyundai. After the likes of i20, Verna, Creta is definitely an improvement. However Steering feedback is something that is still Hyundaish. The Suspension too is very soft, while it makes good work of bad roads even at low speeds, high speed dynamics is still a lot of uncertainty. The Ecosport is extremely nimble in comparison. The Duster makes up big time in ride quality, the S Cross treads a balanced middle path.

Boot Space – 400 litres boot space, is just a perfect proposition for a crossover. The Creta hits a sweet spot here, as the design of the boot as well the space offered is very practical and user friendly.

GC – 183 mm and marginally better than S Cross. Key point to note here. If both S cross and Creta were to take on an extremely bad section of road, with both cars having almost similar GC, the Creta has more chances of hitting the underbody than S Cross ! Why ? Because the suspension in Creta is a lot more sift allowing for more travel. In comparison, the S Cross has a stiffer suspension, making it lot less vulnerable to bumps. However both will be left pale in front of the mighty Duster. Those huge wheel arches can sure swallow couple of boars!

Mod Potential – 1.6 CRDI and Remap aren’t strangers. Hyundai Diesels have this history of become super-fast cars post remaps. Aftermarket parts for Huyndai is also available locally. The Top end Creta itself looks like an Aftermarket modded Vehicle with 17” Shiny Laser cut alloys!

After Sales Service – The next best to Maruti in service – Hyundai. My first own car was an Hyundai i10. My experience with the Dealer (DSL) was just about average. However with plants set up in chennai, I don’t have to worry about, parts availability in case things turn awry!

Waiting Period – This was the shocker for me; waiting period of 3 months. Enquired with another dealer who almost echoed the same timing – 45-60- days waiting period!

Size – Looks perfect for a mini SUV. Although very comparable to Verna on dimensions (sans the Height), the Creta manages to look pretty unlike the gawky S cross. And, no problems with respect fit in my garage.

Budget – No Discounts, except paltry corporate discount. Even with that, the Creta SX 1.6 CRDI was easily 1.5L over my Budget


With each car giving a different value proposition, without being absolutely appealing to heart (nor mind) it became very difficult to choose

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 19:14.
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Old 6th January 2016, 12:08   #5
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Default Chapter 2.1: Predicament of pulmonary artery

Day 18 (Sat, 19th Dec 2015)

With only 4 cars and a focused set of requirements to match, the job seemed like a Simple one.

The Ecosport 1.5 This car was hard to resist, simply for the Dynamics and the presence it bought to the table. However, it was rejected too quickly; the major reason being a cramped rear bench. The rear space was even lower than the Rapid, which prompted my family to look beyond.

The Duster 1.5 and Terrano 1.5, both came in our budget after the discounts (ranged from 50-90k depending on the variant). Here there were three main factors going against it
  1. Too old in tooth: Duster is too old and is due for facelift in Q1 2016. The Terrano although seems like a much better iteration of the Duster, still cannot completely hide its age
  2. The 110 ps version didn’t really feel like 110 ps. I know there was always a remap on cards, however, there should be a certain connect, with respect to engines – stock or remapped wouldn’t change that in a big way. I wasn’t really able to connect with that 110 ps
  3. The A.S.S was another factor going against it. Only the Guindy and OMR workshops were close by. Guindy one was completely washed out in recent floods (along with Skoda’s) and would take easily 2-3 months to get back to operations!
However I loved the GC, Ride quality and the macho presence it brought to the table.

The S Cross 1.6, was completely shot down by my family right form the word go. It lacked visual appeal, Squat and uncanny dimensions didn’t help it either. More than all of that, the pricing proved to be the nail in the coffin. Base 1.6 at 15.1L and you don’t get even a fog lamp! I simply fail to decipher this logic; I mean how much will a pair of fog lamps really cost you ??? Did I mention that the Top end comes to 17.2 L OTR! Another 1L more and you’re already staring down the Cruze LT!
Although I really liked the engine, the rear space and the mature handling, it was way beyond my budget. When I did enquire on the discounts, they just offered a paltry 50k discount on 1.6 and pushed me to go for the 1.3 DDIS 200.

The Creta 1.6, was obvious choice when it came to looks. Everyone unanimously voted a big yes for the design and the road presence it carried. However Creta pricing was another debacle, only to be superseded by S Cross. The 1.6 SX variant at 14.4L OTR. The Top end goes to 16.8L however, it does offer plethora of safety features like 6 airbags and ESP. Also the rear bench was not really comfortable to seat 5. There wasn’t scope to get any substantial discounts, since the waiting period was more than 2 months.
While we all loved the looks, I personally liked the Engine and its refinement levels. Frankly, there is no Diesel motor that could beat the Hyundai CRDI mills in refinement and NVH!

Exhausted from the days’ work was also mentally drained, as I couldn’t really figure out a car that appealed to my heart. From my past experience, I have evolved to a state wherein, I buy only cars that appeals to my heart – no point in buying off cars for the heck of it and selling it off in a Year ! I made that mistake with the i10 and the Verito and both duly packed off in exactly 1 year ! In contrary, the Swift 1.3 Petrol, the Fiesta 1.6 S both lasted 5 years. The Rapid was supposed to be my ride for 6-7 years, before the disaster cut short its life to 2.5 years.
As I lay down that night, my mind was reiterating on the drive I had with each car. I was searching for the appeal factor. As fate would have it, each car offered me one or two excellent appeal aspects followed by a list of downers.

I did a mind mapping to get the Top of mind recall aspect for each car.

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Ecosport – Handling and Dynamics; Duster / Terrano – Ride Quality; Creta – Appeal; S Cross – Power


As I thought about the each car, I also imagined me, driving it day in and day out. I thought about my office commute, my visit to relative place, my daughter’s school, a college reunion, our frequent Pondy drives! For a second, my mind went blank. Blurry images of the Fiesta 1.6 S trying to catch up the XUV 500 flashed. Penguin’s speed runs in MMST Track, Remap testing runs in Kolar, and the Yelagiri Hill climb with pack of Cruzes’…a collage of images floated up my eyes finally to dissolve into one single pic of the Penguin standing helplessly in water.

As my mind struggled to get a hang of the current scenario, my heart stood up and asked “what is the one thing you will miss in your Penguin?”, in other words, what did your late Rapid, stand for? 350+ nm as a daily drive! What will you replace her with?

I closed my eyes in trying to find an answer; all the test drive experience that day lined up in front. A familiar yet, hazy road dawned, and I was at the wheel, taking a U-Turn. The Signal turned Green, with screeching tyres, I took off in the first gear, the revs climbed, I depressed the clutch, and in one quick slingshot action slotted down the gear to second, with my right leg placed in exact position, got into action, in comes <<WOT>> Tacho was already past 2k mark and then like a huge wave hitting you from behind <<Boom>>. The image disappeared.

As I opened my eyes, there was a clam serenity that hung around me. One name stood up - one awful name that stood tall.
The S Cross 1.6 DDIS 320

Yes, she never appealed to my optic nerve, but she had just begun to strike chords in my pulmonary artery

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 19:17.
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Old 6th January 2016, 12:57   #6
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Default Chapter 2.2: Locus of Control

Day 27 (Mon, 28th Dec 2015)

With my heart finally set on the S cross 1.6, it was imperative that all the key family members are in accord. My dad is not too keen on driving these days, hence I have taken the absolute responsibility of family chauffeur. However, the Real challenge was to market a bland looking, unwieldy hatch, to my family.

With the 1.6 DDIS being exorbitantly priced, and my low key budget no helping either, it was a hard decision to take. The Choice was between the three trim variants – Delta, Zeta and Alpha.
Alpha pricing was an absolute no brainer – with or without discounts. This is the top loaded S cross hitting straight on to the XUV 5OO W8 territory at 17.2 L OTR.

Since all variants come with ABS, Airbags and All round Discs, I felt that getting the base trim – Delta would make much more sense. I was offered a price of 13.7L for the same, after discounts. This itself was a stretch, since I had a max budget of 13L only.
However, it lacked some essentials that even a 5L celerio would have; say Fogs for example. And Wheel caps! For a 13.7L car, I really wish to meet the guy who decided the feature set for each trim level!

In Comparison, the Zeta was a much more packed product. For a Price of 14.5L, I get everything the top end Alpha has except the below:
  • Bi-Xenon HL
  • Auto Headlamps
  • Auto Rain-sensing wipers
  • Auto AC
  • Cruise Control
  • Leather Seats
  • Reverse Camera


The Alpha came to almost 15.4L OTR after discounts. Although the features on Alpha for 90k sounded tempting, all were not a part of my essential / mandatory requirements. Also, some of the stuff, like Projectors, Leather upholstery can be retrofit aftermarket. More than that, I thought I ll spend the 90k on getting the looks a tad better. Since the Alloys was looking like wheel caps from WWII era, I thought of investing that into some decent alloys + good rubber (Stock had JK Elanzo’s)

My family’s initial reaction after seeing the brochure was, ‘are you sure this hatch is 15L? Really? ’ They were all unanimous in quoting that the car looks like an overgrown, crossbred swift-SX4! However, I insisted them to come and take a look at the car in person. When the say the car in flesh standing to the Baleno, they realized that looks can be deceptive. It’s a fairly large car. Wider and almost as long as the Rapid. The Rear seat leg room and position almost sealed the deal for them. It was probably the best rear seat, next only to Verito (of all the cars we owned).

I tried capitalize the situation by injecting some more positivity by some gizmo show off with Touch screen, Navigation, Push button start, I believe it did work to an extent. I insisted on a Test Drive along with family and everyone found it much better than the Rapid in space and comfort. My dad has this strange habit of checking my automobile purchase decisions with cab drivers / road side mechanics / Diploma holders / Bus conductors. I have so far not figured out the rationale behind such an act, but it has been consistent in all our car buys. Apparently, I am told they all said, S cross is a very good product, probably the best from Maruti. So, this time around, that helped my case pretty well!

There were some difference of opinion when it came to choice of colors. Frankly, a good looking car will look good in any color; Vice versa however that’s my personal stand. Dad said Sliver, Wife said Brown, Sister said Blue and Mom said Grey. However I always like base colors – Black and White. Since, black was not even listed, Chose White. We also decided on the Zeta Variant and with the Insurance claim amount looking a distant reality, opted for a small loan with SBI. While the load processing started, i also parallely did a quick PDI. I also enquired some common people around near the yard to check if the yard was flooded during the chennai floods. All of them said, water did come, however it was below ankle level, which was perfectly acceptable. During the PDI, i was keen on checking for traces of water hit car.
Quick places to look for;
  • Seats - Sit in them for 5 min and see if your trousers take in moisture
  • Oil level checker - Pull out and place the oil on a tissue paper; If the water is mixed with oil, the tissue absorbs the water first and the oil, continues to be non-absorbent for some time.
  • Under Carpet Rusts - Check for Rusts inside the cabin.


With the PDI done, load approved, i closed out the remaining payment in last week of December. All set welcome the new member, we yet again ran into another small confusion – Registration and Delivery date! After the so called auspicious day - Malicious day ordeal, we decided the car will go for Registration on Jan 6th 2016. The Delivery date was decided to be Jan 7th 2016.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag24620101.jpeg

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 14:36.
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Old 6th January 2016, 15:19   #7
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So where does the S cross really sit in my portfolio. For ease of comparison, let me take only the diesel cars I have owned. The following snapshot will give you a glimpse of where the S Cross 1.6 stands.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-comparo_tbhp1.jpg

There is no doubting that the 1.6 is overpriced by the good margin with or without discounts. From a simple Torque per Lac perspective, it is outclassed by the Rapid. Considering the fact that the VAG engines put out slightly more figures than the stated numbers, they are indeed overwhelming candidates for people who want most bang for buck! Infact an ideal upgrade would have been the Yeti 2.0 TDI however, both the product pricing and my limited budget nailed the coffin.

From the Dimensions perspective, you could see that it is not majorly different in length and breadth – esp when compared to Rapid. However the S Cross sits a tad high – thanks to the crossover space, the car is aimed at. GC is also at a healthy 180 which is much better than the other two.
On the down side, I ll be sorely missing the huge boot space, that both Verito and Rapid offered generously.

If I have to take a quick stock of improvements from the Rapid, I would highlight these key features

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So what do I really call this move? Not really an upgrade, but slight improvement in power with some features thrown in.
Perhaps, a perfect Lateral upgrade

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1241.jpg

We have owned couple of Maruti’s before. We had an Alto way back in 2003 and then a Swift G13GB. Honestly, I didn’t have any expectations from the Nexa – One because, first of all I find this so called ‘premium experience’ a highly relative measurement. Secondly, Premium experience is subject to the life span of your encounter.

However, I do have to admit that I was slightly taken aback when the SR or RM as Nexa chooses to call, displayed characteristics and mannerisms far above whatever I have experienced in the last 12 years of buying cars. (For the record, in 12 years, we have owned 7 cars, including the S Cross). The RM, Mr. Jagdish was quite diligent in his work. Be it explaining the features or answering a question on comparison or getting the TD car on time, I found him pretty well put together. I was also accompanied by my RM for my PDI and we spent a good 1 hour looking at vehicles.

The Nexa showroom (popular, nandanam) was welcome with large glass areas, reasonably luxurious seating area, LED flat screen hanging out and the RM’s explaining with ipads. Well, to me atleast Maruti has come a long way! Incidentally the place where the Nexa showroom is put up, was the same place where I took delivery of my Fiesta 1.6 S in 2010. At that time, the showroom was occupied by MPL Ford.

Overall, it was a pleasant experience for me. Communication was perfect, Documentation, Registration formalities were seamless and Auto knowledge wise also, I could strike up good conversation with my RM.

I would rate the overall pre-purchase experience 4/5

However, this is only the Pre-Purchase experience, I will pen down my post purchase experiences as and when they occur

An extract of few priceless reactions I witnessed just after booking the car.

Friend 1: Machi, what car did you book, finally ?
Me
: Suzuki S Cross da
Friend 1: What ?? you downgraded to a Maruti? Can’t believe da
Me:


Office Colleague: Sorry about your rapid, so you decided on your next ride ?
Me: yea, unfortunate event. Yes, decided and booked. Its an S Cross
Office Colleague: Dude, why are you buying a Maruti, it is not worth, didn’t you consider Creta?
Me: Yea, I did somehow S cross suited better for my requirement
Office Colleague: Honestly, Investing in a 10L+ Maruti sounds ridiculous
Me: okay!


Practice Director: Hey, you booked your car ? or still hunting
Me: Yea, its an S Cross
Practice Director: What car is that ?
Me: Err..its from Suzuki
Practice Director: So you finally came down to Maruti..ha ha. How much is it anyway?
Me: 14.5L after discounts
Practice Director: Really? Does Maruti really have cars in that price range?
Me: recently, yes!



Fellow Enthusiast: What car da ?
Me: S Cross
Fellow Enthusiast: Variant and Discounts
Me: 1.6 DDIS and 1.7L discounts
Fellow Enthusiast: Waste of money. Didn’t you try out XUV5OO or Creta
Me: For the Requirement set I had, those two didn’t really cut in
Fellow Enthusiast: Why don’t you take Ola for 2 months and wait for Creta?
Me: hmmm



Family Friend: Ha ha ha Why Maruti ? were you guys so hit by the flood
Me: Dude, it’s a reasonably premium product?
Family Friend: Maruti and Premium? How much 7-8L ?
Me: Costed me 14.5L
Family Friend:


Overall, the car is carrying an image much smaller than what it actually is. Also, layman's awareness to S Cross is quite poor. Atleast 50% of my population gave me a response, "Do we have a car named Scross? " Also most people have no clue about NEXA or the premium aspect of the same. The Brand 'Maruti' is so etched with aam junta image that even some reasonably industry-aware folks find S cross as just another functional and frugal Maruti. One reason for this is the national engine 1.3 DDIS being plonked into every other car in its stable, the other reason being trapped in an image of a low cost / entry level mass market player. For example, the friend 1 mentioned here, when i brought the Rapid, said "Wow Skoda, what an upgrade, brilliant da" Although he knew nothing about the Rapid or its competition.

I think it will take a lot of time for Suzuki to be seen as a potent mid segment player. Whether they can afford that time or not, is something we all have to wait and watch

Last edited by GTO : 12th January 2016 at 08:25. Reason: Merging
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Old 7th January 2016, 21:43   #8
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Day 37 (Thu, 07th Jan 2016)

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag252801.jpeg

The Car was sent to Registration on Jan 6 2016 and the Delivery was planned on the next day - Jan 7. We were requested to come in after 4 PM, since the number plate arrival would take some time.

The Delivery was seamless, few papers to sign and we were good to go. The RM gave me a quick walkthrough of the ICE, MID and few key parameters involving Auto Dim IRVM, Parking sensors Start Stop operation and Key less entry. Overall i found the walk-through a tad too quick. Even for an enthusiast and a relatively tech loving person, i found the understanding of some aspects of the Navigation and Media operations required bit of time.

The Car was just above average when i dropped in. There were dust settled around all logos and badgings, it was clear that the vehicle had a water wash and thats about it. After i requested them to clean it, the cleaner there wiped off whatever he felt was not clean with some unknown cloth. This left a lot of micro swirls in many area. Overall not very happy with the way car was given.

The timing factor was adhered. however what was alarming is that, there was no sort of puja or worship that was available / offered. I found this very strange as all my 6 cars had in house puja before it was handed over to us. I am not sure if it was something specific with the dealership.

Today being an good day for taking delivery, there were about 10-12 cars awaiting for their owners. And you wont believe almost half of them were S cross. The catch however is that, mine was the only 1.6 DDIS and rest were all 1.3 DDIS.

Me and my dad took the delivery. We were handed over a box of celebrations chocolates, some photos, handshakes and claps filled in the air. We drove off to a nearby Fuel station to fill up some Diesel. Post that we drove to a temple nearby for a small Puja.

Overall i found the Delivery experience to be decent, although could have been much better, esp on the cleanliness of the car. I personally believe in Karma more than God, hence didn't really mind taking the car without any sort of Offering to God. However i am sure lot of people wont take it so easy.

I would rate the overall Delivery experience 3/5

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag250901.jpeg
One point six badging - the one difference, that really counts!

Have put together an infographic representation of my review summary

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-impressions.jpg

Last edited by GTO : 12th January 2016 at 08:27. Reason: Merging
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Old 9th January 2016, 23:28   #9
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Default Chapter 3.1: Shoes does matter!

Day 38 (Fri, 08th Jan 2016)

A man carries his clothes; the shoes carry a man

The significance a good, proper and correct shoe cannot be underestimated – be it on humans or on Cars. A set of alloys and tyres is what few cars need, to uplift their sober looks. The S Cross as such is a very bland design. However what takes the looks completely downward is the design of alloys.
Upon closer inspection, I found that the design was very similar to the ‘Wheel caps’ of lower end Swift Dezire.

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Wheel caps of Swift Dezire

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1291.jpg
Stock Alloys of S Cross

Both the Spoke Design as well as the Hub’s 0 offset make these alloy very bland. Sad thing is, some of my friends even mistook it for a Wheelcap and asked me “Are you planning to get Alloys of higher variant?

Alloys selection

Hence, I Alloy and tyre change was there from the very beginning. A Quick search in google got me couple of options in 16” as well as in 17”
Decided on 17” since, I would anyway be going for a Remap in near future and 16” will have limitation from a tyre size perspective. Also 17” was likely to offer much better stance and rooted road manners. Decided on 225/50 tyres as these offered the best possible tolerances when compared to OEM dimensions.

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Two important parameters to look for Width and Sidewall

When it came to Design, we saw lots of good models in 16” like Momo Next, Momo Corse etc.. I did like the Momo Revenge, especially the 17" brought with it a nice Swag!, However since it has become as common as common salt, I thought I will stay away from it. I finalized on two rims. Momo Win Pro in Matt Black and Momo Quantum Evo in Matt Anthracite. Somehow the Full black rims added lot more attitude to the S cross, esp the black cladding running around was of a very similar hue. Also, large 5 spoke of Win pro was simple in design making it very easy to clean and maintain.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1297.jpg
17" Winpro in matt black

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1296.jpg
17" Quantum in matt anthracite

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1306.jpg
16" Next in matt black sitting next to 17" Winpro

Tyre selection

My first encounter with Hankook started way back in 2012. Ever since i replaced the stock with Hankook Ventus V12 Evo (stock size - 195/55/15), my life around a corner was never the same. Each tyre offers a different value proposition. Some are aimed at comfort, some are aimed at Noise reduction, Some longer life and a few on Grip level. The Hankook Ventus v12 does one thing so good that you can easily forgive the other aspects like Noise and Life. Phenomenal grip and just incorrigible for a spin, however hard you try. My friend had these on Figo and later on Swift each time, I drive a car with these on, the drive is elevated to a different platform altogether!

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1307.jpg
Notice the difference from stock tyre - JK Elanzo. 205/60 vs 225/50

My rapid, unfortunately didn’t have size from Ventus V12. Hence I opted for the Ventus V8, however don’t get fooled by their first name. They are not in the league of the top rung V12 at all!

I was offered Conti Sports Contact 5, Michilen XM and Hankook V12. Without taking a fraction of a second, I opted for V12. This has a superb tread pattern too.

Buyback for my stock tyre and OEM alloy came to 30 grand.
Alloys cost me 36 grand
Tyres cost me 48 grand

But this pic - Priceless
Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_137901-copy.jpeg

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 19:22.
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Old 10th January 2016, 22:44   #10
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Default Chapter 3.2: Dissecting the Drive

Day 40 (Sun, 10th Jan 2016)

"The value of life can be measured by how many times your soul has been deeply stirred" - Soichiro Honda

So, the much awaited highway drive happened on a nice warm Sunday. Had a good 150 km drive on roads which tested the engine and dynamics of the car to an extent.

Engine: I can’t help but admire this little piece of gem. A Fiat at soul, this 1.6 Diesel mill has been given superb state of tune by Suzuki, making it a compelling choice to be in the top rung in its class. While the 1.6 TDI from VAG excels in brutal acceleration and punchy mid range, the DDIS 320 picks up the game from Midway and pummels the top end performance in a territory reserved for D segment sedans. There is no denying Lag at lower RPMS, (below 1750 to be precise) however it isn’t something that you’d classify as hard to live with. Its quite manageable if you spend little time in understanding the gear ratios better. Under 2k RPM, driving around the city, the S cross 1.6 behaves just like any small 1.2/1.3 Diesel motor would do. Speed breakers can be taken on second gear (with a little help from the clutch), Ramps can be climbed, without troubling the A-pedal too much, and Bumper to Bumper traffic can be navigated in the 1st gear with minimum A pedal input. However, the lag will be an issue if you are trying to be too enthusiastic in driving in city. This might require more gear changes to keep up the momentum.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag24640101.jpeg
Suzuki's own version of 'Tell me your dreams'

Post 1750 rpm, the car changes character like multi-personality disorder patient! The Boost from VGT kicks in strong, rocketing the car forward with absolute authority. The torque remains strong till 4k rpm after which it tapers down. Between the 1750-4000 rpm, this car can give most diesels a run for their money. The engine revvs reasonably well, although not as fast as a 1.6 TDI. The Diesel clatter at idle is very well controlled. When compared to the 1.6 TDI which sounds like a Tractor, this mill is extremely refined and evokes a very mature feel.

Gearbox: The new 6 Speed Gearbox is also a CBU import like the 1.6 Engine. It is extremely pleasing to know that Maruthi has done its part by giving a competent engine-gearbox package and not trying to cut the cost here by mating a 5 speed box from its smaller sibling. The Gearbox, puts up a decent show. The Throw is neutral or balanced, not a short shifter like Rapid, neither a long throw box like the Linea. The ratios are taller but evenly spaced out. This makes the S cross 1.6 a superb long distance mile muncher. Triple digit @ 6th gear comes up around 1750 RPM. This makes the engine very relaxed and efficient when cruising at 100 kmph. However the icing on the cake is that, that is bang in the turbo zone! One tap of the pedal is enough to overtake without breaking a sweat. The downside is that, the city driving becomes slightly cumbersome – especially when there is also lag to deal with. One will need some time to understand this Engine-GB combo, to effectively use this car in city traffic.

Steering Feedback: This comes as a disappointment for me. Coming from the Fiesta S, I found it hard to accept the Rapid’s feedback. It took some time for me to settle into a mindset where, I was able to judge the wheels accurately in the Rapid. The S Cross , EPS seems to be on the lighter side. While it does, weight up to some extent as speed increases, the overall feedback is lower than average. This isn’t half as bad as the older gen Hyundai’s still, it is not really even close to the recent Ford Aspire (which had compromised on steering feedback). However for most speeds, under triple digit, this is perfectly fine. Also people who have upgraded from Swifts and Dezire won’t complain much.

Handling and Dynamics: The Car showed impressive agility in changing tracks. There is body roll, but nothing alarming when you think of its peers from crossover segment. The S cross actually, handles like a large hatch, thanks to its lower than segment GC and good proportionate weight distribution. I had absolutely no inhibition in taking corners the same way I used do in my remapped rapid. The suspension is on firmer side, enabling the car to be pushed hard in corners. The overall chasis also seems very well engineered to handle rough roads with aplomb. The iffy steering feedback is something I would like to highlight here again! Handling is a package and steering feedback is an integral component. Overall the car showed impressive road manners, which is a leap from what we have seen in Swift / Dezire / SX4

Ride Quality: Even though I was on 17” 225/50 , which is less pliant than the stock 205/60/16, the Ride quality on broken roads was superb. Yes, at lower speeds, the undulations are felt inside the cabin, however at speeds above 50 kmph, the ride quality improves greatly. I am sure, the stock size tyres would surely be much better. However, so far the best ride quality I have enjoyed still was in the Duster. I think the 25mm extra GC on the Duster is instrumental in getting this elevated ride quality.

Braking: The Front wheels have larger ventilated Discs and the Rear Wheel smaller solid Discs. While the front Calipers are conventional placed at 3 o clock position, the rears flaunt a 12 o clock position. It is a pity that the stock alloys robs the sheen by completely hiding both the discs and calipers. The braking is very good. There is decent progression and the bite level differs based on your input. For example, if i input for gradual braking, the pedal too acts as if the travel is small, however if i stomp on it, the Pedal bites in fast and the travel is much lesser. From a Braking efficiency perspective, i would still vote for the Rapid and Vento's although they have the conventional Front Disc and Rear Drum arrangement. Simply, the progression and feel is so pitch perfect in those cars that it is hard for anyone driving that to appreciate better braking in other cars. However, the S cross probably is the best braking suzuki in India (If you can oversee the Kizhashi).
Note: Brakes also need more time to bed in - esp when your tyres are new, it is hard to correctly comprehend braking efficiency. Hence, i will give an braking update post 1k kms.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1494-copy.jpg
Unassuming demeanor coupled with smaller DDIS 200 image makes this one absolute hell of a Sleeper

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 12:29.
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Default Chapter 3.3: Can't take my ICE...err..eyes off

Day 40 (Sun, 10th Jan 2016)

I joined Team bhp, due to ICE. Back in 2009, I had an i10 1.2 Kappa. Like everyone I started off with a basic 15 grand ICE. And then I lost my mind midway and something like this happened
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/car-en...udiophile.html ("In Pursuit of Happiness" - The Journey of a True Audiophile)

Of course, I never recovered from that illness and went on to build some of the most famed and setups in these part of the world. The Last setup in Rapid was a MOC 2014, award winning one! The final iteration of the setup had the following
Type: Quasi Active 4 Way
Head Unit: Clarion HX D2
Midbass: SO Audio 165-2.8 (63 Hz – 400 Hz)
Midrange: SO Audio 55neo (400 Hz – 6300 Hz)
Tweeter: SO Audio 19neo (6300 Hz and above)
SubWoofer: SO Audio 250 (63 Hz and below)
Front Amplification: Brian B4
Sub Amplification: Celestra FA275x



Coming back to the stock ICE of S Cross. First of all Maruthi should be applauded for bringing in such feature rich system. The S Cross offers 4 different quadrants.
1. Media
2. Phone via BT
3. Navigation
4. Car Play

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1469.jpg

I have successfully managed to explore the first 3 pieces, however since my phone (HTC one M8) is not compatible for the car play part.

Touch Screen: The 7" Touch screen is one of the best units I have seen as OEM, this side of 20L. The Screen has excellent contrast and vibrant colors, enabling a very rich media experience. The Touch response, is above average. I found some lag when trying to enlarge a map during navigation, which I think is acceptable. Otherwise, it’s a very fine unit.

Ports and Connectivity: The System Offers plethora of ports to connect your devices. From the Traditional Aux-in , to the advanced BT, it has everything in between (USB / SD card / FM / Optional DVD changer). The greater news, however is the fact that the system seamlessly identified a 1 TB HDD. Yes you read it right a 1 TB HDD.

Compatibility: The system plays most of the locally available standard audio and video formats. The icing on the cake for me is the fact that its plays WAV natively. Since I usually hear from audio CD direct, WAV makes it a best possible alternative as its completely lossless and uncompressed.

Navigation: The Navigation is via preloaded maps on the SD card. The moment the SD card is out, you will not be able to use the navigation feature. It wasn’t as accurate as the google maps, however it got the right address 7/10 times. Which I feel is reasonable.

Voice guide: The Voice guide is a very nice touch and I now feel, every touch system should have this. Simply because, you will need to look at the unit to use it, however on a more traditional knobs and button systems, your hand could just do the needful without taking off your eyes on the road. The Accent reco was just about average though! (I got trolled big time, trying to show off this feature in front of my friends)

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1476.jpg

Drivers: The Car comes equipped with Midbass / Midrange speakers on all 4 doors. The Front passengers get additional pair of tweeters to compliment the sound stage. The position of tweeters is at the farther end of the dash and pointing straight to the windshield. This generally is not a good practice, since high frequencies have a tendency to reflect off glass areas and thereby making it difficult to control the music, the way we intend to. Haven’t opened up on the drivers, hence I will reserve my comments on the build quality of those later.

Overall Sound Quality: The Sound Quality is average for a 15 Lac car. Yes the system has impressive features, however the sound as such is pretty mediocre. The typical OEM signature of recessed Mids, artificially pronounced lower mids and out of place highs really didn’t cut for me. The Overall imaging and staging too felt a bit skewed to right. I saw up the audio menu and found basic functions – Faders, Balance, Bass, Treble, and some preset EQs. I changed everything to null and the sound turned a tad less aggressive. Still wasn’t something that is worth boasting off. On comparison, the Ford Fiesta Stock system had a very nice and balanced Signature. The Rapid was pretty average too.

Steering controls: You may ask, if this is even a feature worth explaining. Well, I am slightly old school. So far none of my cars had any button on the steering wheel. Gone are those days when the Steering wheel, used to do one job perfectly (read, Hydraulic units). This is the first time I am using a car with few buttons on the steering. Basic functions like, Mode, Mute, Volumes keys are available. Apart from this, the Voice Guide activation button, call accept / reject button is placed on the inner side of the steering wheel. Found the mute button pretty effective. Also the mute button in S Cross, also pauses the music! That’s a smart functionality.

Dashboard: The overall Quality, Fit and Finish of the Dashboard is excellent. From what we have seen over the years from Maruthi, this is one exception that will stand tall! The Dash design is very practical and straightforward. There is no forced design language and unnecessary curves and chicanes being thrust in the name of advancement. This enables a seamless and clean dash which is most likely to compliment advanced aftermarket systems. The Dash is also reasonably deep, which gives more position options when fitting in advanced 3 way setups

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1279.jpg

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 19:11.
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Old 11th January 2016, 13:14   #12
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Default Chapter 3.4: Face Value

Day 41 (Mon, 11th Jan 2016)

"The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inner significance" - Aristotle

When it comes to looks and appeal of the car, S cross is a let-down. It is no head turner at all. I found this out it when I was drove back just after taking delivery of the car. Usually people look at new cars, give glances – however S cross got nothing like that. The car is the best recent time example of the phrase “Function over Form”.

The S cross somehow reminds me the Merc B class. Their resemblance is quite matched on more than one factor. both look very underwhelming in their category / stables. Both have superb space utilization have utilitarian rear seat comfort. Both have a big front overhang, making them appear sad with a drooping over face. A comparison.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-b-class-comparo.jpg
Identical personalities - one raised by the King and the other by the servant


S cross from front looks appalling – At least the top variants bring some attitude via Projectors, but the lower trims look pretty bad. The XXL sized Headlamps and an uninspiring front grill (with Chrome bits identical to Dezire) make it look a mutated beast.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_134301.jpeg
Oversized Headlamps are an eyesore - however they do light up the roads pretty well!

The Front Bonnet also has a mild upward angle to it when it reaches the Headlamps making them look like trying hard for a macho image. There aren't any bonnet lines , making it look like one large mass of solid looking metal covering the engine!

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_144101-copy.jpeg
The Front look of the S Cross - It is said that the looks grows on you. I am still waiting

The Side profile looks decent. The black Cladding looks good on lighter shades. The Rear Quarter Panel which seamlessly integrates into the window panels, help the overall side profile look much better. Like many have pointed out the Design of Alloys itself make this average look car become below average.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1370-copy.jpg
The aftermarket Alloys and low profile tyres elevate the overall side profile to a different level; The Stock alloys on contrary pegged back the beauty quotient!


The Rear on the other hand, is where things look much better. Suzuki’s has resisted to clap on a chrome beading like many others– So first of all, congratulations for resisting that temptation. The Rear Tail Lamp although not as awesome as an Ecosport or Creta manages to bring some character to the table. The S Cross from rear ¾ stand is probably the best look for this car. Don’t be surprised if every S Cross owners always share a shot like this!

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1330-copy.jpg
Screams Attitude ! Again Alloys and Rubber doing the trick

The Silver touch on cladding and on Roof Rails add some touch of sportiness – as though trying hard to classify itself as a Proper Crossover. They look good and compliment the car well.

I was just imagining, how would the car look had they fit the Spare wheel a la ecosport. The on advantage that would have is that the boot size would become plentiful. Secondly the car would surely be longer by 10 cm. Must have brought in the Quasi SUV image many cars are trying to get at.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-spare-mod.jpg
Not bad, eh ? However i am not sure of real world implications - please try at your own risk

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 14:02.
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Old 11th January 2016, 15:08   #13
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Default Chapter 3.5: Inner Circle

"Functionality will appeal to owners; Aesthetics will appeal to Prospects"

Day 41 (Mon, 11th Jan 2016)

The S-Cross features a solid, practical and well-thought out interior. The Dash is made of dual texture materials – A soft touch carbon-fibre’ type finish which holds the A/C vents, Touch screen and the Speedo Console, as well as the Soft touch weathered plastic which fills up the inner areas of the Dash. Surprisingly, both of them are equally good in quality and finish.

The Seats are broad and well-structured to give ample support to both thighs and lumbar area. Both front and rear offer plentiful space, although the rear middle seat is hampered by a slightly tall (for a Zuki) transmission hump! The Door offers nice support to elbow (which again is covered by Fabric) allowing for comfortable cruising. Usually when you adapt to a new car, there always will exist a zone where few things are missing or skewed. However in S cross, I was at home from the very first TD. The placement of switches, the distance between A-B-C pedals, the dead pedal, the proximity to switch gear everything is so well designed and well thought out! Ergonomically, the S Cross is second to none! It is almost like someone built the car around me, (me, sitting and grinning like this ) Someone in Suzuki must have thought about each and every detail to make a marvel of ergonomics! Hats off! The rear seat, I am told (by my family members) that it is quite comfortable over the rapid. The suspension soaks up most bumps, offering a pleasant and pliant ride at the rear

However, the switch gear, Steering wheels and few other bits were straight of Suzuki Swift’s bin making this interior less premium than what it should be. One can understand the cost cutting bit on switch gear but the steering wheel looks absolutely absurd on the interior of this car – frankly this car and drive deserves a better steering wheel at least! The power window Switch gear isn’t back lit!

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_134801.jpeg
Steering wheel should have been better - both in aesthetics and functionality

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag256401.jpeg
Soft touch button borrowed from Swift; Works well though!

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag256501.jpeg
Another glaring example of cost cutting; No back lit controls except for driver side one touch power window

The Start stop button and the Key less entry access works like a charm. Found an embarrassing moment when I stalled the car on my street corner and my fingers frantically searching for the non-existent key near the non-existent key hole. The start stop without the use of clutch activities the ACC mode. The Parking sensor display is integrated on to the MID - Nice. The Switches here too reek cost cutting! The Shade of Plastic itself is very different and quite evident that these are from a different (low cost) bin

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag255601.jpeg
Nice Chrome ring around the Start Stop button

The MID has very clear legibility as well as brightness. There is also a brightness control to customize based on your need. The MID is accessed by long pressing the right control stalk. The Stalks seems to have landed from the 1970's. The MID offers few important stats like Range, Avg Speed, Instant FE, etc..I am only concerned about the range as it matters the most to me. Other parameters like Temperature, Clock, Security settings are also available in MID. Access request has an option in MID which enables to choose between a single door and all three doors. Very convenient, especially when your Office Security daily checks your boot.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1467.jpg
Lovely Blue and White combo looks superb and sporty

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1478.jpg
Some of the info like this one, are quite misleading, it is always better to use the conventional tankful to tankful method for accurate mileage accounting

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1477.jpg
This is one thing i use most of the time; not that it is highly accurate, but its of significant importance when on highway.


The Auto-dim IRVM always starts with Auto on. Found it immensely helpful to ward of dim-wits using 90/100 highbeams in city! . The Powered ORVM works nice. However it won’t auto-close / auto-open when you lock / unlock the car like the Elite i20.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1472.jpg
The Auto button can be switched off; Nice soft touch button there

The Air conditioner is a Chiller. Very impressed with these. Somehow the best A/C's i have used are from Maruti and Ford. The A/C on the Rapid although an Automatic one, took long time to make its presence felt. The Chennai heat, esp during summers is one of the most demanding and draining heat. A Good A/C surely is a must for this near arid climate. I would have preferred an Auto A/C at this price range. When you come to know, cars costing half the price have Auto A/C, you sometimes wonder, if this is really worth it - However that thought will soon be vaporized the moment a stomp on the pedal.

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img_1471.jpg
Old School knob type A/C switches, however extremely effective!

The Boot area is not very large, but ample enough for a family of four. The loading / unloading is very convenient thanks to the same level boot floor as the boot door sill. Haven’t really packed off her to see what all you can plonk in; will reserve my comments on at a later point of time. The Dual parcel tray looks superb and offers good utility.

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 12th January 2016 at 16:37. Reason: Typo.
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Old 11th January 2016, 16:09   #14
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Default Interlude | Expressions

These are my own thoughts after exploring, test driving, buying and owning the S Cross 1.6 DDIS 320.
  • The S cross with Suzuki’s AllGrip (AWD) is available internationally. Had Maruti brought that to the 1.6 Package at the launch prices, it would have been a hot candy for many people. Except the Duster AWD, none of the Crossovers have an AWD system making S cross a compelling choice to the enthusiasts!

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-img01.jpg
The Allgrip would have offered a unique proposition and would have justified the launch pricing
  • The 1.6 MJD is such a sweet gem, I don’t have a clue what is stopping fiat in plonking this in the Linea. The First gen Linea (not the current one with uprated GC) with its supreme dynamics + the 1.6 MJD would probably pose huge threat to the performance crown in C segment sedans (IMHO, is currently owned by Vento / Rapid).
  • I am told the 1.6 MJD from next year would come in as CKD. Means slightly lower cost. Fair chances the S cross would undergo a price revision and the Ciaz to get the 1.6 Mill
  • Suzuki S Cross uses a different grill internationally(almost like the facelifted SX4), not sure which eminent personality in Maruthi thought the Dezire type double slat chrome grill will appeal to Indians!

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-suzuki_s_cross_stu_001.jpg
Check would the all black grill - looks much better. The Alloys pattern resembles a flower - on a practical crossover! Seriously?
  • S cross internationally comes shod with 17” Rims; The Design although better than what was given for India, still looks like some Chinese replica stuff.
  • Strong reasons to believe the S Cross india alloys are done by Enkei India. The website shows some very familiar designs. Check these out: http://www.enkei.in/products4w.aspx
  • The 1.3 DDIS 200 and the 1.6 DDIS 320 have the same tyre and rims. I feel it is a bit absurd. You are either making the 1.3 slower or making the 1.6 risky! I feel the former to be true!
  • The 5 Speed gearbox of the DDIS 200 looks more chic and has a shorter stature than the 6 speed one found in DDIS 320. The 6 speed has a pull up type reverse, which may be the reason for a slightly longer stalk!
  • The Reverse gear engages without any vibration or harshness – beautiful
  • Except for the 1.6 Badging in the rear, there is simply no way to tell the stuff under the hood! People who want to build sleeper, can just get off that 1.6 and have fun
  • S Cross is a relatively old product when you compare the likes of Creta and Ecosport. The Model has been first introduced in Europe in 2013. Which means the R&D of the platform should have started at least 2 years before, that takes us back to 2011. We are now in 2016 – says a thing or two about why it looks 'dated'!
  • Who said, the S Cross is not good looking? I conducted a Social Media experiment couple of days ago. I uploaded the Pic of my Scross and myself at the same time, as different posts. While my profile pic got 130 votes, the S cross sprinted away to a glorious 160 votes. This led me to believe that, the S cross is good looking (than me).

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 18:53.
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Old 11th January 2016, 17:37   #15
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Default Interlude | Your Top 10 Questions

Rapid Fire 10 Questions - busted the Objective way

1. Turbo Lag in City
  • My life is hell
  • Hard to manage
  • Manageable

2. Is the Clutch heavy ?
  • Very Heavy
  • Not bad, can live with it
  • Not heavy

3. Gearshifts
  • Rubbery
  • Notchy
  • Slick

4. NVH
  • Bad
  • Better
  • Best

5. Car tuned for
  • Acceleration
  • Top Speed
  • Somewhere in between

6. Taking a U-Turn
  • Wheres' the next one
  • Need to be little careful
  • A better get in at the right angle

7. Reverse Lights
  • Poor
  • Mediocre
  • Good

8. On Bad and Broken roads
  • I don't care
  • Need to be a tad careful
  • I better slow down to save my spine

9. Driving an Scross
  • People Notice you instantly
  • People Notice you when you Honk
  • People shout at you for having Honked

10. Do you love your Scross
  • No
  • Yes
  • Absolutely

Crossbreed® | Mi10's Maruti S-Cross 1.6 DDiS 320 - Remapped!-imag253801.jpeg

Last edited by Mi10 : 11th January 2016 at 18:52.
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