Test drove the 2023 Seltos turbo petrol: Want to replace my Baleno RS

The change will have to wait, as a used BMW X1 20d & Jimny have landed up in my garage.

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Checked out the Seltos at Epitome KIA in Bangalore. While they did not have a TD the same day they were kind enough to provide me at a later date. I had been interested in the Seltos turbo petrol to replace the RS.

I was especially interested in a manual variant. The omission of a manual variant is quite a miss I feel. I hope Hyundai brings out a manual in the Creta.

Design, Looks & Interiors

It’s a mixed bag for me. I like the way the front has been cleaned up a bit. To me, the old face was a little too busy and the new one has a cleaner look. I especially like the face of the GTX variant. The rear though I feel has too much of a Carens’ look to it and is a bit tame. Overall the car looks a bit bulkier now and not in a good way.

The interiors are very nice, good quality and quite similar to the old Seltos. A great change made to the instrument cluster is that it is now level with the top of the dash. The old one was a personal sore point for me. Some may not like the black interiors but it’s fine with me.


Now to the meat of the matter. The change of heart to the 1.6 turbo petrol. The engine had good responsiveness in Sport mode. Felt it was a bit dull in Normal. The main gripe for me was the DCT. Try as I could I was not able to get into a rhythm with it. The engine holds too high revs in sport when downshifting while you brake. Also, the revs take time to die down after you take your foot off the accelerator. One thing that helped was using the paddle shifts to smooth out the power delivery in sports a lot. To high revs – shift up a gear. Too low – shift down. Contrast this with the AT in the 2017 Verna 1.6. I felt instantly at home and it felt so intuitive to me.

Over the ruts and bumps of Banglore’s road, the suspension felt pliant and comfortable. Just a few ruts and bumps filtered through. ADAS did not feel obtrusive and I liked the fact that it warned when someone was too close to the front bumper. I think ADAS was off as I was able to follow cars quite close and overtake leaving relatively small gaps. I really loved the blind stop view when switching on the indicators. All in all, a good change but not mind-blowing for me by any stretch. A manual would have been a good feature. Would like to see what Creta comes up with. A Creta N line would be my wish.

Though I was really interested in the Seltos two very interesting cars landed up in my garage that replaced my RS. A used X1 20d and a Jimny. So a change would have to wait.

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