Hyundai Compact SUV Concept could be launched at Auto Expo 2016; market launch within next twelve months
It seems like whatever Hyundai touches of late turns into gold. The Elite i20 premium hatchback, Grand i10 compact hatchback and Hyundai Eon entry-level small car have all been doing record-setting sales numbers for the company in the past few years.
Topping them off has been the alluring Creta SUV which was launched in July 2015. Whilst the i20 Active crossover has its fair share of customers, there is a notable gap between both the potent SUVs that Hyundai can exploit: A compact SUV segment that has become quite a trend lately.
Mahindra brought in the TUV300 last September to take on the segment’s benchmark product, the Ford EcoSport, and has since been averaging 4,000 monthly sold units. Maruti Suzuki has not been left ball-watching as the vastly spied compact YBA(Brezza) sporty SUV is expected to take the bow at the Auto Expo 2016 with an aggressive price range to snatch away the EcoSport’s stardom status.
Hyundai must turn the corner and get in the mix before it’s too late and latest rumour from Car and Bike says the South Korean car maker is on the right track. Expected to be positioned just above i20 Active crossover and below the premium Creta SUV, the Hyundai compact vehicle could be based on i20’s architecture.
With high possibilities of being only offered as a front-wheel drive model, the Hyundai compact SUV could be powered by the same engine found under the bonnet of i20 premium hatchback: The 1.2-litre Kappa Dual VTVT four-cylinder petrol engine producing 83bhp and 113Nm of torque mated to a five-speed manual gearbox and the diesel variant is also expected to be similar with a 1.4-litre CRDI diesel mill churning out 89bhp and 219Nm of torque coupled with a six-speed manual transmission.
The Hyundai compact SUV will be showcased only in a conceptual form according to the speculations at the biennial Auto Expo in February whilst the domestic market launch could be conducted within a year. The rumour mill rolled on to claim that as part of stretching its wings in the SUV segment with i20 Active at the low-end of the scale and Santa Fe at the top-most level, Hyundai is eager to have five products by the closure of 2016.
The third generation Hyundai Tucson is more likely to be unwrapped at the approaching Auto Expo. It would mark the re-launch of the mid-size SUV which was sold in India a decade ago and discontinued due to underwhelming sales response. With the fluidic design, the latest generation model was introduced last year at Geneva Motor Show and it will be looking to take the fight to Mahindra XUV500, Nissan Terrano, Renault Duster, etc.