Hyundai's compact SUV coming to India in 2015
Our sources tell us that after evaluating the current market temperament, Hyundai Motor India Limited (HMIL) has concluded that a compact SUV is the way to go. The Korean firm is currently developing a brand new compact SUV that will emerge in early 2015 for the Indian market, the tests for which are currently being done in Korea.
Hyundai ix-onic concept
HMIL intends to price the compact SUV below Rs 10 lakh to enter direct competition with the likes of Renault Duster, Ford EcoSport and a soon-to-be-launched Maruti compact SUV. Clearly, the market has shown that there is tremendous growth in the compact SUV segment with the Duster, Ecosport and now Terrano attracting massive consumer interest.
Hyundai is also on a massive expansion spree wanting to be able to provide the Indian consumer with a multitude of choices at various price brackets and, thereby, also creating new segments, much like Maruti has done in the past and continues to do so. Hyundai will offer both diesel and petrol engine options for the forthcoming SUV. We expect the diesel will be either the same 1.5-litre CRDi engine used in the Verna and Elantra or a refreshed engine that will conform to the emission norms in 2015. The platform will, however, be an all-new platform and expect to see it as a concept at the Auto Expo in New Delhi in 2014 or close to pre-production form at an international motor show in 2014.
Details aren't clear yet on whether the compact SUV will be under the 4-metre mark. although keeping global markets in mind, it may be, in all probability, Duster sized. Nevertheless, we do expect interior quality and fit and finish to be top notch.
New Hyundai i20 and Grand i10 sedan
In 2014, Hyundai will also focus on the new i20, which we expect to be in showrooms by the end of the year. This is fairly big news as the i20 hasn't received a major refurbish in a very long time. Also expect the Grand i10 sedan at the 2014 Auto Expo alongside a few other models that will be brought in purely as showcase items such as the i20 Sport. The sedan based on the Grand i10 will be a sub-4m car and will be priced aggressively to take on the Maruti-Suzuki Swift Dzire. The engine options as well as the feature list and trims for the sedan will be carried over as is from the Grand i10 hatch.
Sources also indicate that Hyundai might drop the Santa Fe for India at the end of the current model's life cycle. The current generation Santa Fe that sells in very small numbers will continue to be on sale for a while but Hyundai might just not bring the next gen model here. The current Santa Fe retails for between Rs 23-27 lakh while the latest Storm Edge (with new Hyundai design philosophy that will replace their very successful fluidic design language) will be even more expensive when launched here. While MD Bo Shin Seo is very gung ho about the Santa Fe, but we wonder if it makes much economic sense given the extremely tiny numbers it sells here. The demand for vehicles at this price point tends to lean towards premium badges from European manufacturers, which is why Hyundai is going to be concentrating on what they do best affordable, luxurious and well-designed vehicles.
Click here for the Hyundai Santa Fe 2013 first drive.
Starts Rs 7.67 Lakhs
Starts Rs 7.99 Lakhs
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