WITHIN CITY LIMITS
We’ve had the Maruti Suzuki S-Cross for seven months now, and the more we drive it the more we like it. This crossover feels like home – that’s how practical and comfortable it is. As a commuting vehicle, the S-Cross truly comes across as an all-rounder – be it in terms of space, build quality, comfort or safety features. This entire month, the S-Cross has only clocked kilometres in the city, and it sent home the point that the 1.6 litre engine is actually pretty apt for bumper-to-bumper traffic. The tall ratios of the 6-speed manual transmission means that you can drive the S-Cross in the city without fidgeting too much with the gear lever.
The 1.6-litre diesel power plant is a gem, but the prominent turbo lag does take some getting used to. When you step on the accelerator pedal to overtake, you do have to wait to get past the initial lag before the turbo wakes up. But the healthy 320Nm of torque kicks in quickly, and the pulling power doesn’t suffer too much. With 118bhp on tap, we did feel that the S-Cross could have been more responsive. But, then, if you look at the Maruti Suzuki diesel engines (1.3 and 1.6) – which are sourced from Fiat – both suffer from initial lag. So, at times, you do have to drive around it or work the gear lever – but it’s not too much of a problem once you get used to it.
Now, driving in the city, means one needs a good, clear view of the road ahead – and this is one area in which the S-Cross scores full points. The big windows are really a boon, but the slanting A-pillar does block vision. While taking a turn, the blind spot can be pretty big – so you do have to be careful.
When it comes to handling in the city, the S-Cross is stable and planted. But with its soft suspension set up – which helps ride quality no doubt – you do have to be a little weary of the body roll. But, keeping in mind that the S-Cross weighs 1,740 kilograms (gross weight), it certainly gives you the confidence to feel as though you’re in total control. What can we say – the S-Cross just continues to impress us on a day-to-day basis.