Two weeks of owning a car! - eNidhi India Travel Blog

Two weeks of owning a car!

 It has been two weeks since I took delivery of Hyundai Venue S+. Sharing my experience so far

1. Got cheated by toll booth on my way home. I am eligible for local exemption, showed vehicle documents and was let through the toll booth. But two hours later I get an SMS that fastag money has been deducted from my account. Had to waste more time and money to fight with toll booth staff. Here's how toll booth companies cheat traveling public.
Now being extra careful.

2. Getting about 16-17 kmpl fuel economy
It was bit uncertain how much fuel economy I will get in Venue. A few Venue owners who had turbo and automatic variant had said they got 11-12 kmpl. Mine is naturally aspirating engine with Manual transmission, ARAI rated at 17 kmpl. I have driven about 700 kms so far and have got 16.8kmpl tank to tank (30% highway, 20% city, 50% ghat section with AC used sparingly. For a compact SUV I think this is decent. Onboard computer was showing as high as 21 kmpl during highway cruise but I think it is not really accurate.

After first service, with more highway usage let me see if the FE situation improves. 

3. Increase in running cost and daily spend
My office is 25 kms from home oneway. That is 50 kms per day. While my bike needs 1 liter petrol to travel this much, car needs 3 liters. So at times I am tempted to save a few hundred rupees everyday and go to office in bike. Only once a while for a change, or when it is raining or if i have to bring some stuff from the city I am taking out car.  Temptation to save one third the fuel cost is still superseding joy of driving a car.

4. Long drives:
It has been almost 2 years since I rented a car and did long drives. Covid and other things had put my plans on hold. Zoomcar and Myles do not have service in my hometown and there are many refund issues going on with Zoomcar. So the temptation of owning a car was running high recently. A bike accident six months ago tempted me to have a car for long drives.

I had a 500 km drive to Sakaleshpura and back on first weekend after getting the car, another 300 kms towards Kuduremukha and back this weekend. So I am ahead of time for first 1000-1200 kms service. After this couple of long drivers are lined up.

5. Number plate not yet- RTO sent an SMS with vehicle number one week after registration. Hyundai says high security number plate will come from OEM and will take 2 weeks since delivery.

6. A compromise between power and money. I have knowingly opted for a non turbo version. S+ gets a 4 cyclinder naturally aspirating engine which makes only 81 PS. It is lot less powerful compared to 1 liter 120 PS turbo engine. At times I feel the lack of power when I am trying to cruise or overtake. But this difference hasn't been drastic. Because I got to save a few lakh rupees, I don't mind going a bit slower or having to spend a few minutes more for every 100 kms I travel.

Too much power is also not of much use due to following reasons
- Speed limits and fines apply even if you have very powerful engine. Max speed limit in most highways is 100 ot 110 kmph. Anything more, be ready to pay 1000s in fine if caught.

- Highway traffic, bad road conditions are common to all. The time you save with a turbo engine compared to a non turbo engine is not really drastic. So I am ok going a bit slower.

7. Features I like vs features I miss
I like corner lamp in the Venue. Had experienced it first time in XUV500 a decade ago while going to Murudeshwara from Bengaluru. Very nice feature in ghat section. Not available in many cars

Decent ground clearance- not too high (200-210 mm means extra effort for parents to get into the car) and not too little (less than 170mm you might scrape underbody in bad roads).

What I miss
  • Rear wiper
  • Second row armrest and 60:40 split seats- would have been more convenient to my guests. Kiger RXT had these, but in many cars only top end variants get this. In Venue S+ gets height adjustment but no armrest for 2nd row passengers.
  • Driver armrest is nice but not much of a use, as I keep driver's seat in forward position and armrest can't slide, so it goes out of reach for me.
  • Instrument cluster is nice but old style. All cars have fully digital display now.
  • Suspension is bit stiff but this is needed for high ground clearance cars to avoid body roll.
  • No faux alloy wheels- Many brands now give a steel wheel with alloy like cap. No such thing in Venue S+ Just normal steel wheels and white cap. not a big deal. My plan is to use it as is for 30000 kms and when it is time to change tyres, change wheel also into some nice quality alloy. Else it will cost 30k more right now, which I don't see any point.
8. Total cost of ownership
Fixed costs: Assuming a lifespan of 10 years for the car, the Venue S+ (10.3 lakhs on road) costing me 1.03 lakhs per year, Insurance 25000 per year, maintenance 20000 per year = 1.5 lakhs per year or  12500 per month. 

Variable costs: Plus a running cost of 1500 kms per month = 100 liter petrol + toll = 12500 Rs

Effectively I will be spending about 25000 INR per month. More if you are paying loan EMI
Can bring it down to 18000-20000 if I cut down on number of long drives and use it sparingly, but fixed costs will remain as is and what is the point of owning a car if I don't use it?

If maintained well this car might fetch 2-3 lakhs in resale value after 10 years if I am lucky. hard to predict how the market will be at that time- Govt may limit the life of cars to 8 years or 10 years (from current plan of 15-20 years) or petrol may become 1000 Rs per liter or something else may happen. So very hard to predict what will happen in future.

9. Accessories
I am evaluating what all accessories I should add. No one teaches maintenance, even if you take up automobile engineering. Need to be very careful on how much to spend on accessories as some of them are not worth it.

Seat cover is under consideration. Ceramic coating I have decided not worth it. Anti rust coating comes standard with the car so didn't spend more. Have added a door guard, headlight, music system and all other stuff I will retain stock as is. Not going to modify. Will opt for alloy wheel later after 30000 kms when it is time to change the tyres. Not keen on adding lots of chrome everywhere.

10. Response from friends and relatives
By and large everyone have appreciated the choice. A few said Nexon would have been better or Ford Ecosport etc. But I have my reasons why I didn't evaluate Tata and decided on Venue. Whenever people ask about it I am proactively telling them this is a mid variant, doesn't have sunroof, alloy wheels, turbo etc.


  1. Nice summary. BTW, How did you dispute the toll transaction - via Paytm or did you have to go back to toll booth?


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