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Upgrading from a 2016 Creta: Which luxury car on a 75L budget?

There seems no merit in trying to replace the car now other than an itch to buy a new one, and I also have a 2020 Mahindra Thar in my garage.

BHPian airguitar recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

My 2016 Diesel SX(O) Creta has done about 95000 kms. There are no maintenance hassles, no issues with power/pickup and it continues to be a superb drivable car that it has always been. Many folks (unless they know the generations of Creta) think it's a new car. There are a couple of bumper scratches and a small ding on the bumper door caused by a idiotic rear-ender. The clutch was replaced once recently (90000 kms) and absolutely no other niggles.

There seems no merit in trying to replace the car now other than an itch to buy a new one ( did someone say life is too short for a single car for too long? ). I have the Mahindra Thar 2020 as my other ride in the garage.

I also have had this long term goal of owning a luxury brand ( BMW/Merc/Audi ), one of those boxes to be ticked in life as a "success parameter". As I plan my finances ( how many years do I need to work, how much savings to have etc ), it looks like it's a good idea to get this ambition out of the way right now while I'm still in my 40s as opposed to close to the 50s : so you know your liabilities earlier. Yes, the car is a liability as far as financial planning goes to me. The X1 would have been an ideal fit but with the recent 3-cyl models and dramatic price increase, it hardly is value for that kind of money.

Requirements

  • ICE car only, with acceptable FE ( 14-15 + at the minimum ) and reasonable power ( around the 150 horses mark ); won't touch EVs with a bargepole
  • Excellent seating comfort for drivers (=me) and passengers, commanding views and ride quality required.
  • Good Ground clearance and reasonably ok turning radius to deal with broken roads and city byroads.
  • Petrol / Diesel isn't a strong factor; though slight preference for Diesel given that the car is expected to do a lot of city runs as well as highway runs
  • I favor MT; but since I expect to have my MT Thar as well, open to considering either.
  • Don't intend buying my next car for 15 years at the least, so reliability and service network important
  • 5 star safety rated, solid frame.
  • Ok looking at a wide budget spectrum (25 to 75), as long as the car is worth the money being paid. Don't want to have an elephant in the stable.

Questions:

  • Should I even sell the Creta given it's good condition?
  • Are the luxury brands worth it ( not affordability, but more the post purchase years - would I feel it would be worth every penny or would it be a disappointment in life if I don't end up buying ) ?
  • What car do you suggest?

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

  • Your Creta is clearly in top shape . As a product, it is also competent by current standards (refinement, power etc.).
  • You have a 3-year old Thar for fun.
  • Invest the money you want to put in a car today, make it grow and buy something better in the future
  • Another benefit is, your Creta at the 7-year mark is well-depreciated and you will lose less of its value over the coming years. So, it's a double benefit (opportunity cost of your new car money as well as slower depreciation of your current ride).

To spice things up, spend a little money and modify your Thar . That will take care of the petrolhead in you itching for an upgrade. I am currently working on my Thar modifications thread - you can refer to it for ideas. I have no hesitation in saying that the modified Thar gives me as much laughter & fun as many 1-crore rupee SUVs I've driven. When we're going out for dinners & parties, my family wants to take the Thar instead of the 530d M-Sport!!

Come back in 3 years and we'll help you choose a truly fast, enthusiastic car, whether sedan or SUV. Because you are in Bangalore and due to your frequent highway runs, I am more inclined toward a fast crossover for you (not a sedan like the C300d, M340i or 530d). If you are open to pre-owned, I am seeing some truly special f-a-s-t crossovers like Macan Turbos & 6-cylinder X5s at the upper end of your budget. In new, the options will only expand in the coming 3 years.

Wait a bit today, and buy a better car tomorrow (related article)

Here's what BHPian anjan_c2007 had to say on the matter:

I would suggest that you retain your Creta for at least another five years, if not more. The odo would touch 150 K kms by then if your usage remains consistent, going by the present 95 K kms it has done till now.

There is need for such Creta class, less pricey car/SUV in your garage with your Thar. The Thar has its own limitations for family usage. With those luxury brands you have on your mind, it's not possible to go to every godforsaken and crowded part of your city where Tata Aces, two wheelers, handcarts, bicycles (bicycles are too less seen these days) etc dominate the traffic scene.

Had you been a resident of Delhi/NCR it would have been the proper time to bid goodbye to the Creta as it would be soon reaching its "end of life".

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

If I had a choice I would do this.

  • EGR Delete, Decat + Piggy back tune, get some 25-30 bhp more (Said numerous times in my older posts)
  • Try some Italian Leather, even if it has nice seats do upgrade them to fresh upholstery. And Please take out the OEM carpet & steam clean and refit them in the process. 7 years of good maintenance too will mean some fine dust settled on the floor. You will be surprised to see the amount of dust behind the dash board! But i am not going to recommend to remove and clean it.
  • Overhaul the HVAC unit, 3M Foamy spray into the vents helps, but to get a new car smell you have to go deeper. The evap unit will be dusty and would like a nice flush. 3M offers a special service where they use a borescope camera to show the condition of Evap and then they insert a small water hose to wash the HVAC unit and show the condition after cleaning it. Make sure you clean the blower fan (remove and see for yourself) and also get a new cabin filter.
  • Change the shocks, at 1Lac kms on indian roads they are no longer showroom condition. If you think there is zero change from day1 then leave them as is.
  • Audio? Not sure what is the current set up, but think of a nice touch screen andriod/apple with some new speakers.
  • Also try to get some superb quality tyres (Michelin/Pirelli only), they make a world of difference in sitting inside.
  • Not to forget flush & change all the fluids/filters (Engine, GB, Brake, coolant, AC). All this should cost less than 1.5-2Lacs and the car will happily drive you around for the next 7-8years (till RC is valid).

As such the diesel car concept will be removed by the time your car does 15 years, might as well enjoy the turbo power of a diesel.

Read BHPian comments for more insights and information.

 
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