The compact SUV segment is on fire in India with the likes of Hyundai Creta and Renault Duster clocking up record sales and it's easy to see why. The segment offers Indian consumers spacious interiors, good ground clearance (a must on our pot-hole ridden roads), decent engine performance and a bit of off-road ability.
In addition, all of these features come at a price point which doesn't burn a big hole in their pockets.So it makes sense for other car manufacturers to also jump on the bandwagon. And obviously the car buyer then has a lot of options to choose from. Here, we take a look at some of the eagerly anticipated compact SUV models set to be launched in India:
The Honda BR-V will be showcased in India during the 2016 Delhi Auto Expo after which the company plans to launch it in the middle of 2016. Based on the extended Brio platform, the Honda BR-V seems to have taken some of its design cues from the Mobilio MPV. Powering the Honda BR-V could be the same 1.5-litre i-VTEC petrol and 1.5-litre i-DTEC diesel powertrains that do duty on the Honda City. Transmission options on offer could be a 5-speed manual gearbox and a CVT automatic.
Honda BR-V expected launch: Mid 2016
Expected price: Rs 15 lakh
Renault Duster Facelift
The Renault Duster was the car that set the ball rolling for the compact SUV segment in India since its launch in 2012. Now the Duster is all set to get a facelift and will sport a new single-slat grille instead of the current multi-slat chrome design, reworked head-lamp cluster, new alloy wheels and a slightly updated bumper. The rear of the car will also get redesigned tail-lamps. But the biggest change in the SUV will be the availability of an automated manual transmission variant. The Easy-R gearbox is likely to be offered with the 1.5-litre dCi 110PS version of the car.
Renault Duster facelift expected launch: November-December 2015
Expected price: Rs 12 lakh
Maruti Suzuki plans to launch the much-awaited Vitara by April 2016 after giving us a glimpse at the 2016 Delhi Auto Expo. The India-bound Maruti Suzuki Vitara shares the same platform as the XA Alpha concept which was showcased at the 2012 Delhi Auto Expo. As far as the engine options for the Maruti Suzuki Vitara are concerned, the company will plan on bringing the 1.4-litre VVT petrol and a 1.3-litre multi-jet diesel. However, considering that the 1.6-litre diesel has also made its way to India, Maruti Suzuki might just offer that engine in one of the variants of the Vitara to give the car the oomph factor. What we also know is that the car will cost less than Rs 10 lakh and that's quite a price point for a car like this.
Maruti Suzuki Vitara expected launch: April 2016
Expected price: Rs 9.5 lakh
Fiat-Chrysler plans to bring the Jeep brand to India and the company will launch the Grand Cherokee and the Wrangler in the first quarter of 2016 via the CBU route. Although that's great news, the cars may not appeal to a wider audience since the price point will be quite high. But fear not because manufacturing of Jeep cars in India will begin very soon and the company plans to launch a compact SUV on the lines of the Jeep Renegade. It will be on the same platform and probably get the same engine but this one will be made in India and exported to other markets. Now that is an SUV a lot of people are waiting for.
Jeep compact SUV expected launch: Late 2016
Expected price: Rs 10 lakh
Also Read: Upcoming Affordable Compact SUVs in India
Seeing the growing demand for compact SUVs in the country, Volkswagen India too is planning to roll out a vehicle in this segment. Though there is no clarity about its platform and engine specs, we believe it will take its design inspiration from the Taigun concept that made its debut at the 2014 Delhi Auto Expo.
Volkswagen Taigun expected launch: June 2016
Expected price: Rs 15 lakh