Two years back, I bought(rather, Dad bought & leased it to me, I’m still repaying him :-D) the Maruti Suzuki Celerio. Why Celerio? I was looking at something within ₹6,00,000 – that meant the Ford Figo(which I bought, almost took delivery but had to cancel), the Swift etc were out of conisderation.
Dad told me that a new car is coming and is quite within the budget and he was right. The car seemed to be pretty good – looks good(from the front anyway), and with its hype about the AMT(and from Magnetti Marelli of all places) I decided to zero-in on the car.. till I realized the AMT is only upto the VX trim(no ABS/Airbags/BT stereo etc) and with a waiting time of 3 months or so – decided to nix this and went for the Manual transmission Zxi (Optional trim)
With that bit of intro away, here’s few thoughts and stats on the Celerio
- With this weekend’s Mangalore trip, I have completed 16,000km on the Celerio in 2 years. That’s about ~21km per day – which is about the average I do daily. Probably means I haven’t done too many long trips ;-p
- Speaking of long distance – the longest was Bangalore – Pondicherry (~380km) followed by Bangalore to Mangalore (~360km). Other places visited include Ooty, Belur/Halebidu, Coory, Mysore, Kushalnagar. Many more places to visit 🙂
- The steepest climb was on the Bangalore – Ooty drive, I took the 36 hairpin route and thoroughly enjoyed every bit of it.
- Build quality has been mixed. The interiors are pretty spacious for its segment, the dashboard looks pretty elegant but touch the body and you’ll feel the flimsiness associated with Maruti. The panel above the wheel arches go *plop in* if you lean against it. The passenger side dashboard came loose in about a year and now pops open at random times. A light touch by a vehicle or a any other object and you’ll see the consequences are pretty bad, at least in terms of paintjob being wiped
- The first gear is too short and second gear is too long. Result: You’ll be shifting between first and second gear quite a lot especially in bumper to bumper traffic. Try to remain in second and you’ll feel the engine sputtering out. Try to remain in first and you’ll get annoyed by the engine roaring out loud.
- Celerio really shines in highways. The engine may be small but is quite capable and you can easily coast at 130-140km/h without feeling anything. I’ve gone upto 150km/h but beyond 140km/h you lose out a lot on driving confidence, mainly because of the lightness of the steering(which is not necessarily a bad thing) and general ‘loss’ of contact. Brakes feel well and you get enough confidence to push the car though
- Celerio loves the ghats as well, driving through the Shiradi ghats with its winding roads is a great joy as car responds very nicely to your steering.
- The steering is incredibly light and responsive. Comes in very handy during the ghats and in city traffic
- The legspace is pretty decent for its segment.
- With the highest available trim, you get both side airbags + ABS + Bluetooth stereo system + electrically adjustable outside rear view mirrors + height adjustable seats. That’s a pretty good value at under ₹6,00,000(not sure what the current onroad pricing is)
- The Bluetooth stereo system is surprisingly good – it sounds good, decent thumping bass, competent treble and pretty loud without any distortion or clipping. The phonebook system is weird – it stores entries linked to each BT device, so if you’ve saved few numbers and then switch to a new phone, you’ll need to do these entries again.
- The airconditioning is pretty decent and keeps you cool even in Mangalore with a temperature of 35+ degrees and 90% humidity.
- In terms of fuel efficiency, Celerio’s consistently delivered ~13kmpl in city and 16-17kmpl on highways, both cases with airconditioning always on.
Overall, I’ve enjoyed the Celerio. It’s been a great car, haven’t had any problems and enjoyed driving it.
Enjoy more pictures
Happy birthday Rosemary!