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Old 28th August 2022, 11:35   #1
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Default Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

And with these words I debut in the 'Grand League'. Yes folks, after being an avid Team-BHP follower for over a decade, today is the day that I pen my first words. And what better way than post a question to the learned - Help me finalise my next drivemate.

Pleasantries aside, I am torn between the classic head and heart duel.

Head implores investing in the MG ZS EV for the sheer cost savings + being ecologically conscious, while the Heart pangs for the Jeep Compass 'S' Diesel 9-Speed TC for the love of driving a real SUV.

Here are my key requirements:

- A fun to drive car that can gobble uneven roads, has a planted stance and can deliver a comfortable ride
- Explanation: I stay in the upcoming New Gurugram area, that is perennially under construction so the overall road quality is nothing short of an off-road trail. However, with a family consisting of a 3-year old kid, a septuagenerian unwell mother, and wife (with 5 cousins loading up for occasional getaways), the travel requirement is of a sturdy, well-built, comfortable car.

- Has to be the absolute top-of-the-line
- Explanation : Somehow, I have always been a stickler for technology, and hence my cars have to be top-of-the-line. My vehicles have to have futuristic, tech marvels with all the bells and whistles. No second thoughts on this.

- Budget to be around Rs. 35 lakh OTR Gurugram
- Explanation : I am upgrading from a 2016 Hyundai i20 Asta and hence will like to finally invest in a worthy upgrade, one that can be my fellow drive mate for at least half-a-decade if not more.

- Should be an SUV, or a quasi-SUV
- Explanation : Living and driving in Delhi-NCR demands an SUV for varied reasons, and hence that's the segment that I will prefer. No sedans for me. Somehow, that connect has never developed.

Cars shortlisted -

1) Jeep Compass 'S' Diesel 9-Speed Auto
2) MG ZS EV
3) Hyundai Tucson Signature Diesel AWD

Preference List:

1) The JC Legend - No two ways about it. This car demands respect. Ticks all my requirement boxes and is the one that the heart tugs. Add to this, ready stock availability of my favourite colour - Techno Green is what makes this my first choice. However, am not being able to convince myself for the Rs. 34 lakh OTR price tag. Somehow, the car looks a bit overpriced. Add to that, the niggles (read: rattling issues), hit-and-miss service experience, and the backseat space that's only good for 2 adults, is making me think of a different option.

2) Move to the Future - The current EV king. Is the one that the head (and the wifey) demands. Under Rs. <2 per km driving cost. Fairly loaded with gadgets (with notable omissions of Ventilated Seats, ECM, Powered Tailgate etc.), and virtually safe for the environment has me leaning towards this one. This is one powerful mile-muncher that has the looks as well. Plus, the governmental support with subsidies and tax benefits makes this an even sweeter deal. Add to this the phenomenal MG after-sales service makes this a no-brainer.

3) The Korean RoboCop - The futuristic of 'em all. Tuscon has my eyes with its sharp cuts, angles and design. However, can't really afford the top-of-line Diesel (Rs. 38 OTR Gurugram). But need to have all the features that the car comes with. Petrol is not my game anymore (frail FE can't have my pockets bleeding again). Hence, this one is the third option.

One question to conclude. HEAD or HEART.

Or, if the learned folks have any other recommendation, then I am all ears.
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Old 28th August 2022, 14:36   #2
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

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Somehow, I have always been a stickler for technology, and hence my cars have to be top-of-the-line. My vehicles have to have futuristic, tech marvels with all the bells and whistles. No second thoughts on this.
This + the fact that you really haven't listed any cons for the ZS EV show where your heart is. I say, go for the ZS EV. It is the best mainstream EV on sale in India. The more you spend time with it, the more you will fall in love with EVs. As an added bonus, you won't need to sell it after 10 years in Delhi-NCR (as you would the diesel Compass or Tucson).

Just make sure you have a backup option for those super long drives on the highway, and that your home parking spot can accommodate a charger (even 15A will do (Why a cheap & simple 15A plug is just fine for home-charging your Electric Car)).

Last edited by GTO : 28th August 2022 at 14:37.
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Old 28th August 2022, 14:54   #3
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

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This + the fact that you really haven't listed any cons for the ZS EV show where your heart is. I say, go for the ZS EV. It is the best mainstream EV on sale in India. The more you spend time with it, the more you will fall in love with EVs. As an added bonus, you won't need to sell it after 10 years in Delhi-NCR (as you would the diesel Compass or Tucson).

Just make sure you have a backup option for those super long drives on the highway, and that your home parking spot can accommodate a charger (even 15A will do (Why a cheap & simple 15A plug is just fine for home-charging your Electric Car)).
Thanks, big brother. In a simple line, you just made my decision all the more easier. Living on the stilt level ground floor offers me a personal parking right outside my room, hence the charger can be installed in the balcony.

Gratitude!
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Old 28th August 2022, 15:20   #4
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

Not only will both Compass and Tucson ownerships be affected by the 10 year rule, the Jeep has rather limited boot space as well. ZS EV is a very good choice.

You can also consider the VW Tiguan. It has the cabin and boot space of the Tucson, a full size bigger than ZS EV and Compass. An excellent TSi turbo petrol + wet clutch DSG + 4 wheel drive. No 10 year limitation and no worrying about charging. A very good all round competent choice for the discerning premium buyer.

Last edited by Shreyans_Jain : 28th August 2022 at 15:21.
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Old 30th August 2022, 15:03   #5
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

Go with your heart - ZS EV. Period.

Given your requirements and geographical limitations, your head choices are easily outrun by the ZS EV.

However, I also request you consider the Nexon EV in its latest "Jet" edition which comes with additional features.
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Old 30th August 2022, 16:16   #6
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

My suggestion, always listen to the head, in this case MG ZS EV.

Also check BYD Atto3, this car is now sold in most International markets.
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Old 30th August 2022, 18:11   #7
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

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A fun to drive car that can gobble uneven roads
This is going to be the ZS EV's Achilles heel. Forget other pseudo SUVs, the ground clearance of the ZS is comparable to a Honda City. If you're not careful, you'll scrape the bottom. Period. I'm talking to you from experience.

Mind you, It is an absolute hoot to drive. It's just that it is not going to demolish anything in its path. If you can overlook this trait, the ZS should be the top pick.
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Old 31st August 2022, 00:50   #8
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

I own a 2016 i20 as well and finding a replacement is a tough ask due to how feature loaded for the price it was back then. Other than a more comfortable suspension and a diesel automatic, I have never felt my little beater was missing anything. I have also test driven a whole lot of cars across a wide band of price ranges this year trying to find a proper upgrade, including the compass S 4x4 and the MG ZS ev. I ended up booking the ZS ev a few months ago but I haven't gotten it delivered yet. Considering the extremely long waiting times that is the norm these days, I figured I would book first and ask questions later.


The Jeep compass has gotten a whole lot of new features and the interiors have been given a massive revamp compared to when it was first launched. It has also gotten way more expensive which isn't really proportional to what you are getting now sadly. The diesel engine is powerful but the 9 speed automatic is a big letdown. It's just too slow and unresponsive, revving up uselessly without the car actually picking up speed in the lower gears. Once you hit highway speeds or around 4th gear, it starts feeling like a 170ps car again. If you are going to get this, I would recommend the manual transmission. The suspension is also a bit stiff and you feel every pothole. 360 degree camera resolution is good, ventilated seats are pretty useful and the stiff suspension means it takes corners pretty well.


The ZS ev is the opposite of this. Seamless EV acceleration the moment you touch the accelerator. Turn off traction control and the wheels lose traction if you floor it even when you are already doing 40. The suspension is soft and it felt very comfortable over broken roads, even better than the much lauded C5 aircross. You start taking corners at speed though and the disadvantages start showing up. This is not a good handler and you will be slowing down before curves. The steering also starts weighing up very abnormally when you take 2-3 corners fast in a row and becomes less responsive (electric power steering getting tired? lol). That might be a one-off case since the test drive car was showing signs of being badly abused. In comparison, the i20 handles way better and the C5 aircross (current leader in crossover suspension as per various websites) which I took through the same curves way faster, had the lightest steering of any car I had driven but it was pin point accurate and there was no body roll at all. It was surprisingly not as smooth a ride as the ZS ev though. MG's camera resolution is pathetic and the 360 degree camera was almost unusable. It was way worse than the backup camera on my 7 year old i20. Interior quality is surprisingly good and the seats are pretty comfortable.


I have not driven the new Tucson so this will be brief. It comes with a bunch of cool features not available in the others including the multi air AC mode which disperses air into the cabin without blowing it right at your face/body and level 2 ADAS. You also get the best looking infotainment and digital instrument cluster. The diesel seems pretty competent on paper and the 8 speed transmission seems promising. It is also the biggest in size. It also looks futuristic and will turn heads and probably won't look outdated in 5 years.



To conclude, the Compass and Tucson offer more features but it is also 10+ lakhs more than the ZS ev. The extras are definitely nice but is it really worth spending 10-15l on? Jeep definitely has brand value here and people perceive it as a luxury product these days. However, it also comes with niggles and no real peace of mind unless you get lucky. This generation of the compass has also been on sale for years now so it would probably be replaced soon.

To make decisions worse, the MG astor which is the petrol version of the ZS ev comes with even more features than the EV, even though it is 5-8l cheaper (depending on your state's road tax). So if you are looking at EV just for fuel costs, take that difference into consideration as well + no range anxiety.

The 10 year rule isn't really irrelevant to your case since the compass most likely wont last that long without major headaches and the ZS ev would need an expensive battery replacement by then. Hyundai also has a bad habit of not supporting their imported, expensive models much after the initial hype dies down. Look at the fate of Santa Fe owners who have to wait a long time for parts to arrive from Korea.

I would say just get the ZS EV for peace of mind as well as substantial savings. Sell it before the 8 year warranty on the battery expires and you could probably get a more advanced EV / luxury crossover which should be plentiful by then.

Last edited by Cresterk : 31st August 2022 at 00:53. Reason: typos
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Old 31st August 2022, 08:15   #9
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

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Originally Posted by BlackAdam View Post
However, with a family consisting of a 3-year old kid, a septuagenerian unwell mother, and wife (with 5 cousins loading up for occasional getaways), the travel requirement is of a sturdy, well-built, comfortable car.

.
Welcome to T-bhp. I agree with the advice of most in this forum that ZS EV would make an ideal choice if charging is not and issue. However since you mentioned a large family with sometimes 5 cousins loading up, you may consider the following options as well:

BYD E6: much larger, practical and comfortable than the ZS EV, and has a longer range. Only downside I think is the lack of brand awareness and it being limited to company registration only.

BYD Atto3: This is another Pure EV option coming in next few months, with a better skateboard platform than the ZS EV and form factor of an SUV. https://www.google.com/amp/s/m.india...ival/53632/amp

Toyota Hycross: Again upcoming, but will likely bring the comfort of an Innova and mile munching capabilities of a petrol hybrid which will be unaffected by the 10 year NCR rule and range anxiety of an EV.
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Old 31st August 2022, 10:31   #10
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

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Thanks, big brother. In a simple line, you just made my decision all the more easier. Living on the stilt level ground floor offers me a personal parking right outside my room, hence the charger can be installed in the balcony.

Gratitude!
I haven't researched EV much but isn't tech evolving rapidly? Even if you were to buy an EV today you will not retain it for 10 years because it would be super outdated probably in 5 years.
I am in the market for a good car with all bells and whistles, top of the line but am not considering an EV as I need a car that can travel about 800 km in a day without the need to stop and recharge. An EV can't be my primary car, and I can't justify having two cars. So top of line diesel for me. I envision my next car in 5 to 7 years as an EV.
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Old 31st August 2022, 10:55   #11
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

Irrespective of whether you get an EV or not, I wouldn't touch a new diesel car with a 10 foot pole. The DPG clogging issue hasn't quite been solved by any manufacturer. If you use the car a lot in low speed, low RPM situations like crawling around NCR in traffic, the DPF will 100% clog and become a massive headache. I say go EV. The MG is very nice to drive, smooth and vibration free. EV tech is relatively simple so I wouldn't be worried about reliability that much if I had one. That it's lighter on the pocket on a day to day basis seals the deal. For the long road trips a bit of planning may do the trick.
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Old 31st August 2022, 11:30   #12
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

My two cents
Since you would be keeping your car for 5 years, get the diesel SUV now and enjoy it before they become extinct.

I still think we are not a mature market for Electric Vehicles yet. You still will have to live with range anxiety if you take it to long routes.

Getting a second car for Highways defeats the whole purpose of owning an EV, which saves you money when traveling long distances.

After 5 years I am hoping we will be ready for EV and that would be the right time to make a switch.

Tucson would be a good choice, I would recommend getting the variant without ADAS and save some money, as this feature may not be that useful in India.

Last edited by born_free : 31st August 2022 at 11:35.
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Old 31st August 2022, 14:28   #13
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

Own the dinosaur before they become extinct. You can always buy an EV later.
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Old 31st August 2022, 15:24   #14
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

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Originally Posted by BlackAdam View Post

1) The JC Legend - Somehow, the car looks a bit overpriced. Add to that, the niggles (read: rattling issues), hit-and-miss service experience, and the backseat space that's only good for 2 adults, is making me think of a different option.

2) Move to the Future - The current EV king. Is the one that the head (and the wifey) demands. Under Rs. <2 per km driving cost. Fairly loaded with gadgets (with notable omissions of Ventilated Seats, ECM, Powered Tailgate etc.), and virtually safe for the environment has me leaning towards this one. This is one powerful mile-muncher that has the looks as well. Plus, the governmental support with subsidies and tax benefits makes this an even sweeter deal. Add to this the phenomenal MG after-sales service makes this a no-brainer.
.
My inputs are likely to be biased since I own a Jeep Compass Petrol and live in Gurgaon -
But some of the challenges you have listed for Jeep Compass are also applicable (more so) to MG ZS EV - limited back seat space (Compass is more comfortable than at least the MG Astor). I can't comment on Tuscon, havnt sit in the new one.

If you are in new Gurgaon, you might be staying in a multi storied society. Do check if they are open to facilitating the set up of EV charging points in the basement.

Despite what a lot of people might say, Jeep Compass petrol is not underpowered in my opinion, so do give it a shot. You might find it slightly underpowered but once it is cruising, it can munch miles without any sweat. The acceleration of an EV will be far better than both Petrol or Diesel, but Jeep should have super capabilities to handle the roads you are describing. Yes, mileage for Petrol will leave you crying. I get approx. 7.8-9kmpl in city with AC, got 10.5kmpl on the highway recently. Lastly, I dont know about other brands, but Jeep community (not the brand) organizes road trip with off roading events as well. I might join the next one.

An EV with fewer moving parts will be more reliable, but the way the tech is evolving, there will be more developments in EV space every year, so your thought on getting the top of the line capabilities might also get affected.

Last edited by aayusht : 31st August 2022 at 15:33. Reason: adding perspective on EVs
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Old 31st August 2022, 18:10   #15
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Default Re: Commit to Electric, or bet safe on Diesel | Monthly run of >1000 km

Have you driven each one of them on the roads that you will use everyday? Start from the basics, and see which car plants a smile on your face (not flooring on highway but by using it on the roads you will cross everyday). After that comes practicality, each one of us here has given you golden advise, even if they have thoroughly confused you

If you like diesel, last chance to buy, just register it in a non-NCR RTO.

ZS EV might become obsolete faster than JC diesel. Expectations from EVs will keep growing, but not from a diesel. Tuson is a formidable package, AWD isn't serious enough and it might start rattling after 70-80 k kms, at least the last gen did. You'll sell it before crossing 80-90k kms.

For that matter, you won't probably keep any of the cars beyond 7-8 years mark, the above 2 you already know why, and if JC serves you well, it might last beyond 10 years, but you will get etched for new tech and features. I am assuming if you do keep JC upto 10 years, it'll be only because of the diesel engine.

My choice is JC, has character, brand image, Jeep owners group activity, tough. Just that the joy of ownership is far better than the others.

BTW I too am in the same segment and like the JC, but can't digest the price, plus I am open to used cars, I don't need anyone to confuse me to paranoia, I myself am enough for it
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