Hyundai India has made quite an impact this year with two major launches - the 2016 Elantra and Tucson - in segments that most considered dead or dying. However, in 2017, Hyundai India is set to launch three new vehicles in very popular segments - the 2017 Grand i10, Xcent and Verna.
The facelifted Hyundai Grand i10, which was unveiled earlier this year at the 2016 Paris Motor Show, will be launched in India in January 2017. The exterior gets minor updates like new bumpers, LED DRLs, new design diamond-cut alloy wheels, an updated rear-window design and a new spoiler, which keep it looking fresh and similar to the latest Hyundais. The interior too gets minor updates like new upholstery, a touchscreen infotainment system with navigation and new trims. However, contrary to popular belief, the changes might not be just cosmetic. We hear there might be mechanical updates to the car too. However, specifics are still uncertain.
The 2017 Hyundai Xcent, which will be Hyundai India's second launch next year, will go on sale sometime in March. The updated car hasn't been revealed as yet, but will get similar cosmetic changesto the face and interior along with the same mechanical updates to the 2017 Hyundai Grand i10.
However, Hyundai says that there will be a major makeover with the new Xcent's rear. We reckon that's a good move because the current-generation Xcent's rear design was never very proportional to the rest of the car. The new design, which will make it look larger, will be designed to bear resemblance to the larger sedans that Hyundai currently sells. The update is expected to make the car more appealing to private owners, rather than the fleet operators with whom the car is currently in demand.
The current-generation Hyundai Xcent
The third launch from Hyundai India next year will be the 2017 Verna, and it should go on sale in either June or July. The car was unveiled at the 2016 Chengdu International Motor Show and is based on the Verna concept which was revealed at the 2016 Beijing Motor Show in April. The new car is larger than the outgoing model in every dimension and features several design cues from the Hyundai Elantra. The interior too shares several design elements with the Elantra, including the infotainment system which comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and finally looks up to date with its rivals.
It was launched in China last month with two petrol powertrains - a 100PS 1.4-litre and a 123PS 1.6-litre units. In India, it is expected to get the same petrol units along with the current 1.4-litre and 1.6-litre diesel engines. However, rumour has it that the Verna's diesel engines will be equipped with a mild-hybrid system similar to the SHVS (Smart Hybrid Vehicle by Suzuki) technology seen in its rival, the Ciaz.
The application of this technology will help Hyundai price the new Verna more competitively by claimingincentives of theFAME scheme(Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles in India). Additionally, this system is claimed to increase the efficiency by 15-20 per cent and can be paired with Hyundai's CNG-powered engines.