Overlanding: Travel a long distance over land. While this is the internet definition of the term Overlanding, the word means a lot more for Overland enthusiasts, or travel enthusiasts in general. It means to remain on the road in a self sufficient manner, where less is more, and to do so, one obviously needs an overland vehicle.
Any vehicle can be an overland explorer if it is kitted properly. But there are few which you can drive off the showroom without any modifications. And even few which fit a tight budget. This is where the Maruti Vitara Brezza comes through a champion.
At INR 9.92 lakhs, ex-Showroom, New Delhi, for the top-end Maruti Vitara Brezza ZDI+, you do get quite literally everything you need: A reliable 1.3-liter DDiS diesel engine with great fuel efficiency averaging 17 km/l on the highways, dual airbags, ABS, EBD, chunky 16-inch alloy wheels, projector headlights, a touchscreen entertainment system, reverse camera, cruise control, automatic climate control, a chilled glovebox, and a generous 198 mm ground clearance which tackles most terrain.
We clocked over 3,000 km in the Maruti Vitara Brezza and we absolutely love this compact SUV! The well shaped 330 liter boot easily swallows all our luggage, and the comfy seats with armrests at the front and rear ensure that even continuous 9 hour drives are a ‘Brezza’ (which incidentally means ‘Breeze’ in Italian!).
The 90 PS diesel engine comfortably maintains triple digit speeds on the highways, though we really wished Maruti would have included a 6th gear for an even optimized cruise. Speaking of cruise, the cruise control is a great feature on the highway as it certainly lessens the strain on the foot.
The ride, handling and overall stability of the Vitara Brezza provides peace of mind while driving on Indian roads where quick direction changes, and sudden braking is nothing out of the ordinary.
Even off the road, the Maruti Vitara Brezza’s high ground clearance and 215 section tyres provide an ideal setup for some soft-roading despite the lack of 4WD.
And when you are finally off the road, on the beaten track, or by the banks of that beautiful river lifted from a picture frame, the Vitara Brezza’s spacious cabin provides means of camping indoors! Simply lift the rear seat squab, and the seat back folds flat onto the floor resulting in a double bed! Sleeping inside the Vitara Brezza, on a quilt with a pillow is far comfortable than sleeping in a sleeping-bag.
At the end of the day, the Vitara Brezza’s versatility is what we love the most! It is small enough to comfortably drive through congested cities and yet large enough for a weekend of overlanding thanks to its smart rear seat which doubles up as a bed. With the Vitara Brezza, we don’t find ourselves ‘Checking-Out-At-Noon’ from a roadside motel, but rather looking forward to explore the unexplored and at the end of the day, thats what overalanding is all about!
What we loved:
♥ The frugal engine
♥ The smart rear seat
♥ The value for money
What we didn’t love:
✘ The Brezza would be far more comfortable with a 6th gear on highways
✘ An option of a sunroof would have been great!