Honda Elevate First Drive Review – Performance, ADAS Safety Features

Note: If you prefer watching the review in Hindi instead of reading it in English, then you can play the following video:

2023 Honda Elevate – Exterior Review

Elevate is a C-segment SUV, with an overall length of around 4.3m. Its general design theme is upright – thus you can observe a lot of straight lines and the exterior looks particularly boxy at the front. Its large grille and wide chrome strip are attention-grabbing elements.

Headlamps

Its headlamps and fog lamps are of LED type, as are the front turn indicators. Talking about the features on offer, the Elevate comes with the Honda Sensing package, which is a camera-based ADAS. Its camera is integrated into the windshield, but there is no other parking camera here, nor does it come with front parking sensors. We think at least one of these features should become a common feature in top variants of C-segment SUVs.

Side Cladding

This cladding continues on the side as well with the squarish wheel arches covering 17-inch alloy wheels in the top variant. Speaking of distinct SUV traits, the Elevate’s 220mm ground clearance is a stand-out attribute. The good thing is – despite having such ground clearance, it does not look under-tyred.

ORVM

Notable elements in its side design include a left mirror-mounted blind spot camera, chrome door handles, thick body-coloured side cladding, roof rails and a shark-fin antenna.

Rear-Wiper

At the rear, you get LED tail lamps, but the turn indicators here are of the regular bulb type. It gets a connected tail lamp design but the red strip between the tail lamp clusters doesn’t have backlighting. The bumper gets thick cladding, and the overall rear design is simple but pleasing.

Boot-Lamps

The highlight of the Elevate’s boot is its 458-litre luggage space. It’s the largest in the segment and with the split folding rear seat, you can expand it further. The boot has shopping bag hooks and a lamp, and there’s also the parcel tray here. Under the boot floor, there’s a 16-inch spare tyre, on which the toolkit is neatly placed, and there’s some space beside it to keep a puncture repair kit.

Elevate

Overall, the Elevate looks a little bland to us at the front, but it has a typical appeal of an SUV, which most buyers will find pleasing. The highlight, of course, remains the class-leading 220mm ground clearance. The following table gives you an idea of the dimensions of key C-segment SUVs competing with the Honda Elevate:

C-SEGMENT SUVs | DIMENSION COMPARISON

 

Elevate

2023 Seltos

Creta

Gr. Vitara

Hyryder

Length

4312mm

4365mm

4300mm

4345mm

4365mm

Width

1790mm

1800mm

1790mm

1795mm

1795mm

Height

1650mm

1645mm

1635mm

1645mm

1635mm

Wheelbase

2650mm

2610mm

2610mm

2600mm

2600mm

Ground Clearance

220mm

190mm*

190mm*

208mm

208mm

Boot Space

458L

433L

433L

373L (265L Hybrid)

373L (265L Hybrid)

Tyre Size (top)

215/55 R17

215/55 R18

215/60 R17

215/60 R17

215/60 R17

Here’s a look at the dimension comparison of the Honda Elevate with other C-segment SUVs:

C-SEGMENT SUVs | DIMENSION COMPARISON

 

Elevate

C3 AC

Astor

Kushaq

Taigun

Length

4312mm

4300mm*

4323mm

4225mm

4221mm

Width

1790mm

1796mm

1809mm

1760mm

1760mm

Height

1650mm

1654mm

1650mm

1612mm

1612mm

Wheelbase

2650mm

2671mm

2585mm*

2651mm

2651mm

Ground Clearance

220mm

200mm

180mm*

188mm

188mm

Boot Space

458L

444L

448L*

385L

385L

Tyre Size (top)

215/55 R17

215/60 R17

215/55 R17

205/55 R17

205/55 R17

*Estimated

Let’s now take a look at its interior.

Honda Elevate – Interior Front Review

Interior

The Elevate comes with a black-brown dual-tone interior, with dark wooden trim and matte grey detailing on the dashboard. The top of the dashboard is all hard plastic, but it feels alright for the segment.

Auto-Door-Lock-Unlock

For an upmarket feel in the cabin, there is leather finish on the dashboard and doors, and the fitment of the centre console is satisfactory. While the glove box lid is light, its finish is only acceptable. It’s spacious though and can easily accommodate 2-3 pet bottles. Speaking of space for bottles, there are also bottle holders in all 4 doors with door pockets.

Centre-Console

In terms of storage, there’s a place to keep a wallet in the front armrest, and 2 cupholders in the centre console. Next to these is a wireless charging pad with 2 USB ports and a 12V power socket.

Wireless-charging

So, there’s enough storage here to keep and charge multiple devices simultaneously. Above this are the physical air-con controls with a new 10.25-inch touchscreen infotainment system towering on top. It gets wireless smartphone connectivity and gets an 8-speaker audio system with an immersive sound output.

Touchscreen

The display and UI of this infotainment system are basic, but the touch feedback is satisfactory. You can divide the main infotainment screen into 2 or 3 parts. While it doesn’t get many features to brag about, you can always keep the live feed from the rear or side camera on the display. The big downside is that this feature will not work with Apple CarPlay, because that takes up the full screen space.

Audio-Controls

Anyway, this infotainment system can be accessed via driver steering-mounted controls, and apart from this, the steering wheel also has ADAS related buttons and paddle shifters. Like in the case of Honda City, Elevate also offers adaptive cruise control with both manual and automatic transmissions.

Cruise Control

There’s one more feature here that needs a special mention – customisable wiper settings. With this feature, if the car’s wipers are left on for some time period, basically in case of extended rainfall, its headlamps automatically turn on to improve the visibility of this car.

Blind-Spot-Camera

Other important add-ons from the driver’s perspective are:

  • Tilt & telescopic steering wheel adjustment
  • Height-adjustable driver seat
  • Full colour-LCD instrument cluster
  • Power mirrors with power folding
  • Sunroof
  • Frameless auto-dimming inside mirror
  • Keyless entry with push-button start/stop

Tilt & telescopic steering wheel

We CAN NOT talk about the Elevate’s interior and not mention its outstanding driving position. There’s a rawness in the way the bonnet’s side bulges are visible from here – so you will get the traditional SUV-like feel while driving it.

Height-Adjatable-Driver-Seat

If you’re someone who prefers a high driving position, then you’re going to love the view out from here, which is unobstructed despite the fact that it gets massive outside mirrors. With the driver’s seat set to my driving position (5-feet 8-inch), let’s examine the rear seat space.

Honda Elevate – Rear Interior Review

Rear-Seats

Entering and exiting the rear of the Elevate is easy, mainly because of its high ground clearance. There’s more than adequate knee space for me and enough space to slide my feet under the front seat.

Rear-Headrest

In terms of seating position, you would sit upright in the rear of the Elevate, and in this position, I would have liked it more if its floor was flat – and not angled upwards like it is. Despite having a generous seat base, I found the under-thigh support lacking. That said, the cushioning of this seat – whether it’s on the base or back, especially the lower back – is quite likeable.

Rear-AC-Vent

Talking about space again, there’s more than adequate headroom for me, and there’s generous space between me and the door as well. Other notable features here include:

  • 2x adjustable headrests
  • Rear AC vents with a 12V power outlet
  • Centre armrest
  • Power windows
  • Door leather trim

Keyless entry with push-button start/stop

If you consider the Elevate mainly as a high-riding alternative to Honda City, and you’re someone who sits more on the back seat, then we think City is still the better option. But if you drive more often and you want that SUV-like driving position – then Elevate is a better car.

Instrument-Cluster

A few things that we think the Elevate misses out on are:

  • Ventilated front seats
  • Power driver seat with memory
  • Multicoloured ambient lighting
  • Cooled glovebox
  • Rear curtains
  • Puddle lamps

Sunroof

The general sense of quality and space in this cabin is likeable, and the seats are very, very comfortable. Let’s now see how it drives.

2023 Honda Elevate SUV – Engine Performance And Drive Review

EngineThe Elevate comes with a 1.5L, 4-cylinder, normal petrol engine that produces 121PS or power at 6600rpm and 145Nm of torque at 4300rpm. This engine is available with a 6-speed manual and CVT type automatic transmission, and we drove the automatic.

It’s a CVT unit, but it also comes with paddle shifters, which you can use to control various ratios of this transmission. It seamlessly manages engine revs because there are no mechanical gear changes, but actual acceleration and engine revs are not smoothly synchronised. Basically, when pushing it, the engine revs increase quickly, but there’s a lag in the car picking up speed. It seems more of a CVT characteristic than anything else, and it is more pronounced only when you’re looking for immediate acceleration.

Auto AC

We performed a brief 0-100kmph test, which it completed in around 13 seconds. So it’s not outright fast, but offers satisfactory performance. The powertrain feels refined in terms of vibrations. We do, however, feel that the engine noise seeps into the cabin, especially when revving it hard.

When it comes to cruising, its engine remains at around 2000 revs at 100kmph, and it feels planted and confidence inspiring at these speeds even when changing lanes quickly. The braking also feels confident, but from a dynamics perspective, its ride stands out the most. We drove it at varying speeds over regular road uncertainties and even rough roads, and it was pretty comfortable.

On our drive, we experienced the adaptive cruise control and lane keep assist features of the ADAS setup. We found the adaptive cruise control to be reliable, but the lane keep assist wasn’t as effective.

The one feature I personally like a lot is the display of the blind-spot monitoring camera in the infotainment system while using the left turn indicator. I think it’s a feature that can improve driving habits and make the driver want to be more aware of the surroundings.

For the Elevate, Honda claim a fuel efficiency of 15.31kmpl with the manual transmission and 16.92kmpl with the automatic. We will test its fuel efficiency when we get this car for a longer period. For now, as far as our initial impression is concerned, the Elevate is a sorted car in terms of dynamics, and its highlights are its comfortable ride, seats and very high ground clearance.

Following is a look at the comparison of the Honda Elevate’s engine with key C-segment SUVs:

C SEGMENT SUVs | PETROL ENGINE SPECS

 

Elevate

2023 Seltos

Creta

Gr. Vitara / Hyryder

Gr. Vitara / Hyryder

Astor

Engine

1.5L

1.5L

1.5L

1.5L

1.5L Hybrid

1.5L

Cylinder

4

4

4

4

3

4

Displacement

1498cc

1497 cc

1497 cc

1462cc

1490cc

1498cc

Power

121PS @ 6600rpm

115PS @ 6300rpm

115PS @ 6300rpm

103PS @ 6000rpm

115.5PS

110PS @ 6000rpm

Peak Torque

145Nm @ 4300rpm

144Nm @ 4500rpm

144Nm @ 4500rpm

137Nm @ 4400rpm

141Nm

144Nm @ 4400rpm

Manual

6-speed

6-speed

6-speed

5-speed

5-speed

Manual FE

15.31kmpl

17kmpl

16.8kmpl

21.11kmpl (19.38kmpl AWD)

NA

Auto

CVT

CVT

CVT

6-speed TC

CVT

CVT

Auto FE

16.92kmpl

17.7kmpl

16.9kmpl

20.58kmpl

27.97kmpl

NA

Here’s a comparison of the Honda Elevate’s engine specs with the small turbo petrol engines of the C-segment SUVs:

C SEGMENT SUVs | PETROL ENGINE SPECS

 

Elevate

C3 AC

Kushaq 1.0

Taigun 1.0

Engine

1.5L

1.2L Turbo

1.0L Turbo

1.0L Turbo

Cylinder

4

3

3

3

Displacement

1498cc

1199cc

999cc

999cc

Power

121PS @ 6600rpm

110PS @ 5500rpm

115PS @ 5000rpm

115PS @ 5000rpm

Torque

145Nm @ 4300rpm

190Nm @ 1750rpm

178Nm @ 1750 – 4500rpm

178Nm @ 1750 – 4500rpm

Manual

6-speed

6-speed

6-speed

6-speed

Manual FE

15.31kmpl

18.50kmpl

19.76kmpl

19.87kmpl

Auto

CVT

6-speed TC

6-speed TC

Auto FE

16.92kmpl

18.09kmpl

18.15kmpl

*Estimated

2023 Honda Elevate Petrol-Automatic – Verdict

Elevate

The Elevate seems underwhelming on paper. It doesn’t get many features that are available in its rivals, and some of them are even found in lower segments. In terms of outright performance as well, the Elevate doesn’t really push the bar much further.

However, having driven it, we think that this car is more than just what the spec sheet might suggest. Take the seats for example – these are certainly among the most comfortable in the segment. Its cabin space and material quality are commendable – you feel like sitting in a premium car. The same goes for the ride quality – it’s very comfortable once you’re on the move.

So, the Elevate is not a car that you will be able to show off for a unique feature or the way it looks. It’s a no-nonsense type of car – a car that gets the basics right. So, if you are looking for a comfortable car with high ground clearance from a long-term perspective, then consider the Elevate.

We think the prices for the Elevate could range between Rs. 12.50 lakh and Rs. 17.0 lakh. It will go on sale in September. According to Honda, it is likely to have a waiting period of 3-4 months for buyers who intend to book it after the price announcement.

Also Read: Honda Elevate SUV Variant-Wise Expected Price Calculation — With Logic


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