Hyundai has introduced a fresh new face in their local SUV range: the all-new Creta, with eye-catching styling, extensive features and driving capabilities that are bound to make it an even more popular choice in this very competitive segment of the South African car market.
The new Creta comes in five derivatives with two specification levels – Premium and Executive. A 1,5-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine, a 1,5-litre turbocharged diesel engine and a 1,4 turbocharged petrol engine are the power sources for the range. They are used in combination with a manual transmission, an Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT) and a dual-clutch automatic transmission for the flagship Creta TGDI Executive.
The first-generation Creta was an immediate volume-seller in Hyundai's South African SUV range since its launch in 2017. After a slight mid-term facelift the following year, the new, second-generation Creta arrives on our shores at the end of 2020 with striking exterior looks that bears the styling DNA of its bigger SUV siblings – the Tucson and Santa Fe – as well as the smaller Venue.
All together 14 811 units of the first-generation Creta was sold in South Africa since its launch in 2017.
Not only the exterior, but also the spacious cabin of the new Creta received a complete redesign, which is slightly longer and wider than its predecessor. The neat, minimalistic facia of the new Creta's centre console and instrument panel is impressive and creates a tranquillity that adds to the enjoyment of the solid, smooth ride qualities of the vehicle.
Fresh new styling – inside and out
The all-new Hyundai Creta is sure to be an eye-catcher on the road with its fresh new styling and the two-tone colour scheme for the flagship Executive Derivatives. It is a visibly larger car than its predecessor and the smoothly creased hood lines and a voluminous body-coloured bumper and big, bold new grille helps to make a dramatic first impression.
The headlights (halogen for the Premium derivative and LED for the Executives) take an unusual shape, with the daytime running lights above and on the side of the headlight cluster. Below them the bumper houses the indicator lights and fog lights (for the Executive derivatives).
Viewed from the side, the new Creta’s styling upgrade is impressive. It sports bold, almost square wheel arches that are accentuated by the design lines on the body panels above them. The 2-tone derivatives with their Lava-Orange-and-black and Polar-White-and-black colour themes are even more attractive as the black C-pillar and roof form a unit.
The taillights of the new Creta repeats the design lines of the front end of the vehicle, with reverse lights located in the tidy black bumper. The attractive 17-inch alloy wheels on the Executive derivatives complete the picture. The Premium derivative comes with 16-inch alloys.
Seven body colours are available in the new Creta range: Galaxy Blue, Lava Orange, Phantom Black, Polar White, Red Mulberry, Titan Grey and Typhoon Silver.
On in the inside, the styling of the new Creta has also risen a few notches. It is clean, sometimes minimalistic, with beautiful red accents on the leather seats and air vents. The steering wheel, with a flat bottom part, also sports red stitching in the leather cladding.
The cabin is spacious, also for rear passengers, who benefit from added comfort in the form of a centre arm rest with cup holders that fold out of the backrest for the middle seat in the rear bench. The driver seat’s height can be adjusted, and with the telescopic and height adjustment of the steering it creates a very comfortable driving position.
Seat trims are available in grey and black cloth for the Premium derivative; grey and black leather for the Executive versions; and black leather seat trim with red accents for the flagship Creta 1.4 TGDI Executive DCT.
A multifunction steering wheel with remote control buttons for the infotainment system, trip computer and cruise control and a wireless charging pad (in the Executive derivatives) are two of the many convenience features found in the new Hyundai Creta.
The button for the Bluetooth telephone connection on the steering wheel enables the driver to make calls using voice recognition. Furthermore, the Apple Carplay and androidauto connectivity of the infotainment system with its 8-inch touch screen enables the driver or passengers to select several functions through voice commands.
Apart from the infotainment USB connection in the centre console, the new Creta has an extra 12V power socket, as well as a USB charging socket and storage place in a very useful console for the rear passengers. This console also contains rear air vents for the Creta’s manual air conditioner.
Manoeuvring the new Creta in the city and in tight spaces is made easy with the rear park assist sensors and camera, which displays its view on the infotainment system’s screen.
New engines, Continuous Variable Transmission
Three new engines are used in the all-new Creta range in South Africa: A naturally aspirated 4-cylinder engine with a 1 497 cc displacement; a turbodiesel 4-cylinder, with a 1 493 cc displacement; and a turbocharged petrol engine with a displacement of 1 353 cc.
The engines are mated in different combinations to either a 6-speed manual gearbox, a conventional 6-speed automatic transmission, a new 6-speed Intelligent Variable Transmission (IVT) that uses a chain belt and pulley system with an increased gear ration span, or a 7-speed Dual Clutch Transmission (DCT). All derivatives are driven by the front wheels.
The 1,5-litre naturally aspirated engine powers the entry derivative, the Creta 1.5 Premium (six-speed manual transmission), and the Creta 1.5 Executive with the new IVT. This engine delivers 85 kW peak power at 6 300 r/min. and 144 Nm maximum torque at 4 500 r/min.
The new turbodiesel, which pushes out 85 kW peak power at 4 000 r/min. and 250 Nm maximum torque between 1 500 and 2 750 r/min., delivers power in the Creta 1.5 Executive Diesel, coupled with a 6-speed automatic transmission.
The new 1,4-litre turbocharged petrol engine is reserved for the flagship derivative – the Creta 1.4 TGDI Executive with the 7-speed DCT and a two-tone exterior colour finish. This engine delivers 103 kW peak power at 6 000 r/min., and 242 Nm maximum torque between 1 500 and 3 200 r/min.
Among other improvements, Hyundai has equipped the new 1,5-litre petrol engine with two injectors per cylinder and applies advanced valve timing, called Middle Position Lock CVVT, to improve efficiency.
In the case of the turbodiesel, the cylinder block’s weight has been trimmed by 5 kg and power output and fuel efficiency improved by a new fuel injection system.
Ride, handling and suspension
A firm, yet comfortable ride makes a journey in the new Creta enjoyable – both on tar roads and gravel routes. The McPherson strut front suspension and coupled torsion beam axle (CTBA) for the rear wheels have been tuned to give the new Creta a solid, surefooted feeling on both road surfaces.
The CTBA, which includes trailing arms and carriers on which the rear wheels are mounted, offers improved compliance characteristics that are noticeable when the Creta encounters a mountain pass or a bumpy road.
Decreasing levels of noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) has also received attention through increased body rigidity along safety-critical structures with the expanded use of industrial-strength adhesives that augment spot welds.
Revisions to the engine mounts and redesigned intake/exhaust manifolds also played key roles in reducing NVH levels and lowering specifically acceleration noise.
Front and side airbags for the driver and front passenger, and two curtain airbags that offer protection for rear passengers too are part of the new Creta Executive derivative’s safety package. Side and curtain airbags are not included in the Premium derivative.
ISOFIX child seat attachments are standard in all derivatives, as well as 3-point inertia reel safety belts with pretensioners.
Electronic Stability Control (ESC) ensures control even in difficult road conditions, while a tyre pressure monitoring system gives early warning should a tyre run flat.
Another luxury safety feature is Hill-start Assist Control, which holds the car for a few seconds on an incline to pull away without roll-back.
The pricing of the new Creta range is:
Creta 1.5 Premium (manual) R 374 900
Creta 1.5 Executive IVT R 429 900
Creta 1.5 Executive IVT (2-tone) R 434 900
Creta 1.5 Executive Diesel (automatic) R 469 900
Creta 1.5 Executive Diesel (automatic) (2-tone) R 474 900
Creta 1.4 TGDI Executive DCT (2-tone) R 484 900
All Cretas are sold with a 7-year / 200 000 km manufacturer’s warranty; 4-year / 60 000 km service plan; and roadside assistance for 7 years or 150 000 km.