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Replaced my Hyundai Creta with an Exter AMT: Booking & initial thoughts

The showroom experience in South Bangalore with all the dealers (Maruti, Nissan and TATA) except Hyundai (Blue Hyundai, Basavanagudi) was very poor.

BHPian sahsriv recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

Hi,

It is a long cherished dream to be part of this elite group happy it coincided with my new Exter purchase, hence quite elated and delighted to write my first post in terms of ownership and feedback.

I took delivery of the car on 23rd December and have been in a lot of travel ever since.

I am now happy to share my buying experience, modifications made, and vehicle performance so far.

Background

It has more than 30 years of driving experience in India and abroad and owned several cars and varied experience in different conditions. Still, remember my first car Ambassador in 1990 bought after my wedding, and has good memories. Cut to the present, in November, my family and friends were totally surprised when I decided to replace my 5-year-old, faithful Creta (1.4 Diesel) with a smaller vehicle. The reason is, that my usage dropped to 5K KM/year, difficult to drive in Bangalore city conditions, and reduced family size (it is now just two of us).

My priority was to buy a vehicle with a ground clearance of 180 mm, high reliability, good service, and easy to drive in the city and highways.

Vehicles considered

  • Fronx / Baleno
  • Punch
  • Magnite
  • Exter (AMT and Manual)

The showroom experience in South Bangalore with all the dealers (Maruti, Nissan, and TATA) except Hyundai (Blue Hyundai, Basavanagudi) was very poor (perhaps due to year-end, they had a lot of enquiries to attend and could give only price list and asked us to come back later) We could only manage to see these vehicles in the showroom, while the display car of Punch had issues like doors not opening properly, etc and in Fronx my wife did not like the back seat comfort, boot space, and base model had only very minimal features and we were out of budget for higher variants.

It was a refreshing change with Blue Hyundai, called them up first and then visited them. They arranged for my Creta valuation instantly, then offered a test drive of Exter top-end variant AMT (my wife and daughter also accompanied me). Except for the initial sluggish pickup, we found the vehicle ticking all the boxes of our requirements.

We got a good deal for our Creta (after verifying valuations in Cars 24 and Spinneys) and also promised to deliver Exter before 31st December provided we gave them few options on the variants.

The Sales person was very nice and professional, made our life easier by allowing us to pay for only basic car value and registration cost, rest said it will be our prerogative to decide. This helped us big time in bringing the cost of the vehicle down by 60K approx (Insurance, optional accessories, etc.)

Hence we agreed and booked the S model AMT (other options given SX MT DT and SX Auto) on 7th December since getting an automatic at less than 10 Lakhs sounded very attractive and not much to pay additionally after selling off our Creta to them.

On 11th Dec I got a call from the Sales guy stating that they could get an SX MT DT (white and black) in a week’s time, although we had preferred the Auto, still felt the variant was value for money (and manual isn’t that hard to drive), hence confirmed the same.

The vehicle arrived on the 15th in Bangalore, checked VIN, did PDI, paid the balance money and the vehicle got registered by 20th December. Opted for only mud flap, edge guard, tyre valve cap, and 3 M Teflon coating package (3 times in 1.5 years with 6 months intervals) as optional items.

The vehicle cost worked out as follows:

  • Basic cost +
  • Registration (BLR): 9.66
  • Insurance: .24
  • Extra fittings: .07
  • Modification: .18 (Tyres, headlight, and cabin lights)

Total 10.15 L on road

Took delivery of the car on 23rd December with my family present and was another memorable day for us.

Did the following modifications on the same day:

  • Millivision, Lalbagh road - Exchanged stock tyres for Yokohoma earth1 185/65/R15, took stock tyres for 3000 each and new tyre for 5800 each.
  • Konark, Jayanagar - Replaced stock headlamps with 50 W 4300K OSRAM LED headlights, cost 6500/-, replaced all cabin lights with Blaupunkt LEDs, paid Rs 600.
  • Car cover - Rs 1300/- from Amazon
  • GFX long life mats bought from co-distributor (Siddi Automotive) good quality at an attractive price of Rs 2700/-

We along with our friend in 2 cars did a 1000 km holiday trip to Koppa (base location and stayed in a 300-year-old house) and covered Udupi, Sringeri, and Agumbe. Overall vehicle performed nicely and was a delight to drive.

Positives

  • Good visibility, silent and refined engine, easy clutch and gear shifts, a pleasure to drive
  • Decent boot space, comfortable ride for 4 people, excellent AC, cools in an instant
  • Stock audio system was ok for our needs and the navigation system worked very well
  • Got mileage of about 15.8 involving mostly highway driving (with a lot of ghat sections) with AC on for the most part.

Not so good part

  • Having driven a diesel Creta earlier, was longing for a bit more power, something I needed to get used to.
  • Post 90+ km speed, wind noise intrudes into the cabin and since I opted for hard tyres, it also added to the noise part.
  • Horn - Already pointed out by many, needs change
  • While suspension is good at lower speeds, not so at higher speeds, especially if we hit a pothole or speed breaker accidentally.
  • it would been nicer to have a slightly harder suspension.
  • Armrest is sorely missed, not sure why these basics are not provided
  • Not sure why basic items like mud flaps aren’t provided, need to pay for them.

Hill assist function - Had an incident while taking a steep climb on a hairpin bend (with 3 people on board), the vehicle in the front was an Ertiga, suddenly stopped and there were a lot of vehicles behind me. I applied the brakes and when I tried to move, the vehicle did slip behind, had to use a hand brake and move forward.

The car manual says that Hill Assist works for 2 or 3 secs only, need to try this out another time. the good part is, that the vehicle did well to negotiate all the hairpin bends nicely (had heavy traffic and could take these bends mostly in 2nd gear)

Post my trip, planning to do sound damping shortly to reduce wind and road noise, thanks to the 94-page thread in Team Bhp, was very useful, finalised the vendor and will share the experience on the outcome.

Thanks for reading and kindly share your feedback and comments.

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