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Compact SUV or hatchback: Need a safe, reliable car to replace my Dzire

Since I would be driving on the highway, would like to opt for a safe car with at least 4 star rating. It should be niggle free and overall give me a good mileage.

BHPian sunbaj recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Hello Bhpians.

Looking for some recommendations and suggestions on buying a new car. I am sure many are in the same dilemma as I currently am because of the numerous launches in the market along with new technology like mild hybrid, strong hybrid and EVs and God knows what more will follow in the near future.

As for my current ride, I own a Swift Dzire ZDi 2012 and will be completing 10 years by December. I am currently based out of Delhi NCR and with the absurd ruling of NGT will have to part ways with my perfectly running and extremely well maintained car. The car was so well maintained that I have till date only used Mobil Delvac 5W40 engine oil, would clean up the intercooler every 20K irrespective of if it was required or not. The car has been driven 85K and I on an average have extracted 23KM/Liter from the car. Overall extremely satisfied with the performance of the car but as fate has it will have to part with the car.

To give some personal background about me, I am in my mid 40's and regularly drive between Delhi NCR and Chandigarh which was not the case earlier as things have changed on the personal front. Most likely would be having one to two trips a month between Delhi NCR and Chandigarh which is like 270 Km one way and my daily office run would be approx. 40 Km to & fro.

With the above said, I am on the lookout for a new car. Since I would be driving on the highway, would like to opt in for a safe car with at least 4* rating. Also would be preferring a car which should be niggle free and overall give me a good mileage. Would not prefer a big car and most likely be inclined to a sub 4mt SUV and even open to buying a hatchback as status symbol or going in for a upgrade from what I currently drive is of least important to me as I am more of a practical person and take decision not by heart but by practical usability.

As a no brainer, I should have gone with a Brezza or a Nexon but what confuses me is with the new innovations and development happening in the car industry I believe that in 5 to 6 years the petrol and diesel guzzlers would be out of market and there would hardly be any takers for the same. So I am double minded as to whether I should invest 9 to 11 lakhs in a sub SUV or buy a hatchback costing around 6 to 8 lakhs and then go for an EV. I believe that in 4 to 5 years the EV market would mature and we would have lot many options than what we currently have.

Do let me know of your thoughts and recommendations.

PS: I till now have not done any test drive of any vehicle. Even when I bought the Swift Dzire I had not even gone for a test drive. I was hell bent on buying a Maruti as I had owned a Zen and it was a niggle free ownership experience then and so has been the case with Swift Dzire.

Here's what BHPian shashi792 had to say on the matter:

I would suggest a Hybrid (Strong vs. Mild is based on the usage pattern). With the NGT ban, diesel might not make sense for you. Petrol (petrol price vs. mileage perspective) alone also does not makes sense with the market these days being filled up with lots of options:

  • My pick would be Toyota Hyryder or Vitara.
  • My second option would be Tata Nexon EV Max if the commute is majorly in the city.

Both these vehicles have their own advantages. Nexon EV is a tried and tested vehicle. On the other hand, Toyota/Maruti have their reliability and service center access as advantages.

Here's what BHPian GreasyCarb55 had to say on the matter:

If it wasn't for the bi-monthly 500km+ Delhi->Chandigarh run the Nexon EV or Nexon EV Max would've been the perfect choice but since that's out of the picture let's look at the other options.

If you want a smaller car and later upgrade to an EV in 4-5 years I would look at one of these 3 cars:

  • Citroen C3 Turbo - Mechanically it's the best car here, there's no doubt about that, it does lack a few features like a tachometer, climate control, adjustable headrests etc but if you want a fun to drive petrol car before going electric then I'd go for the baby Citroen with the 1.2L 110hp firecracker Inline 3 under the hood. Mileage is about 19-20kmpl, this car is manual only (6 Speed).
  • Tata Punch - The Tata Punch is a proven car in terms of comfort, features and practicality but the bad part is the lethargic 84hp 1.2L NA petrol engine and the equally incompetent AMT gearbox. Mileage is about 16.5kmpl (AMT) and 17kmpl (Manual).
  • Tata Altroz Diesel or Turbo Petrol - As I've said the Tata 1.2L NA Petrol engine is lethargic and if you like driving I'd avoid it but unlike the Punch you have engine options with the Altroz. A 110hp 1.2L Turbo petrol and a 90hp 1.5L Turbo Diesel. Both of them are good engines but the Diesel is a little more fuel efficient. Mileage is about 18kmpl (Turbo Petrol) and 20-21kmpl (Turbo Diesel), both of these engines are manual only (5 Speed). There is a Tata dual clutch automatic available but that is only available with the 1.2L NA Petrol.

The on-road Delhi prices for the top models of all cars here are as follows:

  • Tata Punch - 9.5-10.5 Lakh (depending on if you opt for the IRA pack, Kaziranga edition, AMT etc)
  • Citroen C3 Turbo - 9.1 Lakh (C3 Feel 1.2 Turbo Vibe pack)
  • Tata Altroz - 10.4 Lakh (I-Turbo XZ Plus) or 11.3 Lakh (Turbo Diesel XZ Plus) add 30k-40k if you want to go for the Dark edition cars.

Here's what BHPian Shreyans_Jain had to say on the matter:

Diesel has no future in Delhi NCR, especially with the advent of strong hybrids. Your usage pattern makes a very good case for them. Unfortunately, the City hybrid is 20L+, and the upcoming Toyota Hyryder hybrid is also expected to be 20+.

Unless you are willing to spend that kind of money, just go for a turbo petrol. Tata Altroz iTurbo is a very good car. The base Honda City is priced only a little more, and is an excellent car for its price. Should be your top choice.

Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
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