Home Cars & Bikes What does it cost to drive a Hyundai Creta from Joburg to...

What does it cost to drive a Hyundai Creta from Joburg to Cape Town?

Hyundai Creta on gravel in Little Karoo

Diesel-powered cars are the fuel-economy champions of long-distance journeys. But some petrol burners can play this game exceedingly well too – like Hyundai’s Creta 1.5 Executive automatic.

South Africa has energy issues. There’s either not enough of it or it is overpriced.

At the time of writing this (January 2024), a litre of 93 octane petrol has a retail price of R22.17 (inland).

It’s tempting to view this figure as some sort of ‘welcome relief’ or a return to normality. After all, the price was R25.22 in October 2023. However, in January 2023 the price for the same fuel was R21.10.

For an even clearer perspective, this is what prices looked like over the past five years, courtesy of the AA. If this doesn’t make you nostalgic for the past, nothing will:

January 2024R22.17
January 2023R21.10
January 2022R19.36
January 2021R14.18
January 2020R15.39
January 2019R13.43

When we undertook the journey, the cost of petrol was R22.79 per litre. Rounding the distance we travelled down to 1 400 km, we used 88,2 litres and achieved consumption of only 6,0 litres per 100 km (16,7 km per litre).

This translates to a total of R1 914.36 to travel 1 400 km, or R1.36 per km.

About the car

The vehicle we used was Hyundai’s Creta 1.5 Executive Automatic, which was refreshed in 2022 along with the rest of the Creta range. The design changes are most visible on the car’s nose, where the new grille and headlights were redesigned to resemble that of the striking Tucson.

Hyundai also improved the Creta’s suspension and structural rigidity for the 2022 model (onwards).

The Creta’s interior

The car’s interior styling and design are minimalistic and user-friendly. The cabin is quite spacious for a car of this size, also for the rear passengers.

There are USB ports in the front and back, as well as air vents in the back for when the rear occupants (also) want cold or hot air. The seat trim is black artificial leather and drivers can adjust their seat height.

The steering wheel, which is height and depth adjustable, has control buttons for the infotainment system (with 8-inch / 20,3 cm touchscreen), trip computer and cruise control.

Apple Carplay and Android Auto connect wirelessly to smartphones and there’s a spot for wireless charging of phones with this feature.

It’s easy to maneuver the Creta in confined spaces thanks to the rear parking assist sensors and camera. There’s an electronic handbrake in place of the previous version’s lever.

On the road

The 1.5-litre 4-cylinder engine (without turbo) is connected to a CVT transmission with six distinguishable steps. The driver can also perform gear changes manually.

The engine delivers 84 kW peak power and 144 Nm maximum torque, sending power to the front wheels. Its performance is adequate, thanks to its weight of just 1 175 kg.


Hyundai says it has tuned the suspension to give the Creta a reassuring and firm feel on all road surfaces and the 17-inch rims allow enough rubber for a comfortable ride. Ground clearance is a useful 20 cm.

With the facelift, Hyundai’s engineers succeeded in reducing noise and vibration through increased body rigidity, the manufacturer says. This was done “by using industrial-strength adhesives that complement welds, as well as specially designed engine mounts.”


Front and side airbags for the driver and front passenger, and two curtain airbags, that also protect the rear passengers, are part of the safety package.

Electronic stability control (ESC) ensures control over the car even in difficult road conditions, while a tire pressure monitor will give an early warning if a tire gets flat.

Another included safety feature is Hill-start Assist Control, which holds the car on a rising incline for a second or two, allowing the driver to pull away without the car rolling back.

PRICE: The Creta 1.5 Executive (auto) costs R522 500. Included are a 7-year / 200 000 km manufacturer’s warranty; a 4-year / 60 000 km service plan; and roadside assistance for 7 years or 150 000 km.

Should you choose a Grand Creta or Kona instead?

The Creta’s longer and more powerful stablemate, the Grand Creta, arguably offers better value for money. The Grand Creta 2.0 Executive manual costs R520 500 and the automatic R566 500. However, they will use about 30 percent more fuel than the Creta.

There is a more fuel-efficient diesel version of the Grand Creta available, starting at R588 500 for the 1.5 Diesel Executive automatic.

A tempting alternative

An important factor to consider is that the beautiful Hyundai Kona 2.0 Executive automatic also sells for R522 500. Although the Kona is 110mm shorter in length than the Creta, it has many advantages over the latter. It is faster, more powerful, and has more luggage space than the Creta (when measured with the rear seats upright).

Spec differences

Furthermore, it has heated side mirrors, an auto-dim rearview mirror, rear privacy glass, and hill-descent control; features that are missing in the Creta. The Kona also offers one additional service included in its purchase price.

According to Hyundai’s figures, the Kona 2.0 Executive’s petrol consumption almost matches that of the Creta. Unfortunately, the Kona Executive isn’t fitted with LED headlights, a feature the Creta Executive does have. The Creta also provides slightly more interior space than the Kona.

At the time of writing, Hyundai offered a R40 000 discount on all Cretas. This undercuts the Kona Executive’s price by the same amount.


The Creta scores 5 out of 5.

5.0 out of 5.0 stars
Previous articleZencar 22 kW T2-T2 EV Charging Cable – Review
Next articleCM Virgo 15.6” Notebook Backpack – Review