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Mahindra XUV 3X0 vs rivals: Enthusiasts share their choice of car

This really needs a multiple choice poll! Compact SUV buyers are now spoilt for choice.

Mahindra XUV 3XO

What you'll like:

  • A truly premium crossover. Nice build, quality & refinement levels
  • Cabin has enough space for 5. Quality-wise, the interior is more like a Hyundai
  • Fantastic petrol & diesel engine line-up; they offer fast performance & good driveability
  • Finally gets a smooth torque converter automatic with the turbo-petrol engines
  • Wide variant spread ensures there's something for everyone
  • A compliant ride with sorted road manners
  • 5-star NCAP rating & kit. Level 2 ADAS, 6 airbags, ESP, ABS, all-wheel disc brakes, TPMS, seatbelt reminders for all & more
  • Loaded to the gills with equipment (360-degree camera, big sunroof, drive modes, Harman Kardon audio system, wireless smartphone connectivity, auto headlamps & wipers etc.)

What you won't:

  • The new edgy & outlandish design may not be to everyone's liking. Some love it, some don't. It is very polarizing
  • Top-end variants are expensive. Not overpriced, but definitely higher than expected
  • 295-liter boot is the smallest in the segment. There are cheaper hatchbacks that have a larger boot
  • No proper diesel automatic option, just a jerky AMT which has no place in a premium crossover
  • Light & disconnected steering is the biggest drawback in a competent handling package
  • Mahindra's after-sales service quality is a hit or miss. Remains a gamble
  • Some important features missing (ventilated seats, parcel tray, full-sized spare wheel, paddle shifters etc.)

First Drive Review

AMT Review

Tata Nexon

Review Link


What you'll like:

  • A mini-Creta in almost every way! Same formula, in a smaller package
  • Precise build & quality (including interiors) are easily among the segment best
  • Competent engines mated to slick gearboxes
  • Fast shifting dual-clutch Automatic gearbox available
  • Balanced road manners. Very easy to drive as well
  • Loaded to the gills with equipment (paddle shifters, drive modes, sunroof, BlueLink telematics, cabin air purifier etc.)
  • Top safety equipment includes 6 airbags, BAS, ESP, HSA, ISOFIX and more
  • Hyundai's competent after-sales & fuss-free ownership experiences

What you won't:

  • Diminutive street presence. Looks more hatchback than SUV from some angles, especially the rear
  • Strictly a 4-seater; the rear bench has very awkward seating for the middle occupant
  • Missing kit (auto wipers, auto-dimming IRVM, steering reach adjustment...)
  • Long term reliability of the DCT is a concern
  • Engine noise is very prominent, more so in Sport mode
  • AT only on the petrol, not the diesel. Kia Sonet gets a Diesel AT

Review Link

Maruti Suzuki Brezza

What you'll like:

  • Good-looking Compact SUV with improved road presence & mass appeal
  • Well-rounded product. Takes a successful formula and improves upon it
  • A competent BS6 petrol with Smart Hybrid tech and excellent fuel efficiency
  • Smooth 6-speed torque-converter AT comes with paddle shifters
  • Well-mannered suspension setup riding on 16-inch wheels and 215/60 section tyres
  • Decent cabin space for a sub-4 meter car. Lots of storage & a powerful air-con too
  • Now gets a sunroof, 360-degree camera, head-up display, rear A/C vents, wireless charging, ambient lighting, tilt & telescopic steering adjustment, connected car features etc
  • Long feature list includes dual projector LED auto headlamps, LED DRLs & foglamps, auto-dimming IRVM, cruise control and a 9-inch touchscreen HU paired with an Arkamys sound system
  • Safety kit includes 6 airbags, ESP, hill-hold assist and ISOFIX. Built on the same platform as the outgoing car, which had received a 4-star GNCAP safety rating
  • Maruti’s excellent after-sales service, wide dealer network & fuss-free ownership experiences

What you won't:

  • Feels more like a significant facelift rather than an all-new product
  • No diesel option like its rivals! Petrol and CNG only as of now
  • 1.5L petrol engine lacks outright grunt. Tuned for fuel efficiency and suitable for relaxed cruising only
  • Expensive! AT variants are priced higher than some of the competitor turbo-petrols with more advanced transmissions
  • AT option commands a stiff Rs. 1.5 lakh ex-showroom premium!
  • Interior quality and fit & finish are underwhelming for the price. The game has moved on
  • Short gearing of the 5-speed MT and lack of 6th cog results in an unusually busy engine at 100-120 km/h
  • 328-litre boot is among the smallest in the segment
  • Some missing features like ventilated seats, leather upholstery, TPMS, drive modes, auto wipers and front parking sensors

Review Link

Kia Sonet

Facelift Review

Maruti Suzuki Fronx


What you'll like:

  • Smart looking crossover with sharp & attractive styling
  • Feels better built than some other Maruti cars
  • 1.0L Boosterjet turbo-petrol engine is quick and has minimal turbo lag. Driveability is satisfactory
  • Smart Hybrid system ensures excellent fuel efficiency. ARAI = 20.01 to 22.89 km/l
  • Nicely tuned suspension glides over small bumps, potholes and road imperfections
  • User-friendly cabin with loads of space! Can easily seat 5 adults (unlike many competitors)
  • Long feature list includes LED auto headlamps, LED DRLs, cruise control, 9-inch touchscreen HU paired with an Arkamys sound system, 360-degree camera, head-up display, rear A/C vents, wireless charging, footwell lighting, tilt & telescopic steering adjustment, connected car features etc
  • Safety kit includes 6 airbags, 3-point seatbelts for all, ESP, traction control, hill-hold assist and ISOFIX
  • Maruti’s excellent after-sales service, wide dealer network & fuss-free ownership experiences

What you won't:

  • On the inside, it’s almost identical to the regular Baleno. Differentiation should’ve been more
  • Quality of some plastic parts and fabric upholstery is mediocre
  • 1.0L turbo-petrol although quick, is not exciting enough for enthusiasts
  • 308-litre boot is among the smallest in the segment
  • No diesel option like some rivals
  • Rear seat’s under-thigh support is lacking for taller passengers
  • A few missing features like sunroof, TPMS, rear armrest, drive modes, auto wipers and front parking sensors
  • Lesser height means, despite the smart styling, it doesn’t have the road presence of typical crossovers

Review Link

Toyota Urban Cruiser Taisor

Launch Discussion

Nissan Magnite

What you'll like:

  • The Magnite looks really good…that handsome face is a head-turner
  • Sheer value-for-money pricing. Turbo-petrol with a proper automatic at ~10 lakhs!
  • Peppy performance from the Magnite’s 1.0L turbo-petrol engine
  • Smooth well-tuned CVT in a sea of jerky AMTs. Has Sport and L modes too
  • Healthy legroom for rear passengers. Space packaging is brilliant
  • Impressive kit (cruise control, LED headlamps, rear air-con vents, 360-degree camera, wireless charger, wireless Android Auto & Apple CarPlay)
  • 205 mm of ground clearance is more than enough for any kind of bad roads
  • Safety kit includes ESP, TPMS, ABS, EBD & hill start assist
  • Base variant also gets reasonable kit, including a rear wiper. It’s not poverty-spec

What you won't:

  • Stiff & basic ride quality. You feel each and everything on the road
  • The Magnite is built to a cost and it does show, especially in the budget-grade cabin
  • Lower variants’ 1.0L naturally-aspirated petrol is a boring, unimpressive engine
  • Clunky, firm MT gearshift & a clutch pedal that has more weight than it should
  • No diesel option available on the Nissan Magnite
  • Cabin is narrower than some competitors. Narrow width makes it best for 4 adults
  • Missing features such as an auto-dimming IRVM, full-size spare tyre…
  • Doesn't have the finesse or quality of premium crossovers like the XUV300, Sonet etc.
  • Nissan's tiny dealership network & lousy after-sales quality

Review Link

Magnite AMT Review Link

Renault Kiger

First Drive Review

Ownership Review

Mahindra Bolero Neo

What you'll like:

  • A 7-seater SUV at a price comparable to 5-seat crossovers & compact sedans
  • Robust, abuse-friendly build & body-on-frame construction. A typical Mahindra UV in that sense
  • Likeable & roomy cabin. 1st & 2nd seat rows are spacious
  • 1.5L diesel offers excellent urban driveability & fuel economy
  • Tall seating, comfy front seats with armrests, excellent visibility & good presence make city driving easier
  • Healthy boot space with the last row of seats folded. Can drop 2nd row to haul more cargo
  • New additions such as the mechanical locking differential & cruise control
  • Dual airbags, ABS + EBD, Corner Braking Control etc. are offered on every variant

What you won't:

  • 3-cylinder diesel has no top-end. Expressway performance is mediocre, vibrating gear lever a turnoff
  • Ride quality is nowhere as cushy as its car-based rivals. Does get bouncy & bumpy
  • Steering is on the heavier side at parking / low speeds
  • No automatic in a market that loves its ATs. No 4x4 or petrol engine either
  • Deletions from the TUV300 = reversing camera, leatherette seats, lumbar support adjustment, underseat storage, roof rails, smaller fuel tank...
  • Side-facing 3rd row seats are very uncomfortable
  • Some important features missing (climate control, Android Auto / Apple CarPlay, rear a/c vents, good speakers, auto-dimming IRVM etc.)
  • Mahindra's after-sales service quality is a hit or miss. Remains a gamble

First Drive Review

Here's what GTO had to say on the matter:

This really needs a multiple choice poll! Compact SUV buyers are now spoilt for choice.  Thumbs up to the XUV 3XO, Nexon Facelift & evergreen Sonet. All 3 are darn competent and come with some great engines & transmissions (except the AMTs). I love the Fronx 1.0L MT too (but hate the AMT variants with the other engine).

The Brezza (too boring), Venue (I much prefer the Sonet) and Magnite (feels very cheap).

If I were a customer in the market, I'd have a hard time deciding between the XUV 3XO, Nexon Facelift & Sonet.

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

I like the Kia Sonet in this segment and then the XUV 3X0.

The Kia Sonet with its 1.5 L Diesel AT is a joy to drive, smooth and dependable. The XUV 3x0 also offers plenty of features and a powerful diesel engine.

The Nexon also catches my eye, but I have some reservations about fully trusting Tata due to a few minor niggles.

Read BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
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