Hyundai micro SUV will more likely go on sale in late 2023 and it will sit on the Grand i10 Nios’ platform
Hyundai Motor India Limited (HMIL) is expected to bring in an all-new micro SUV concept at the 2023 Auto Expo in January. It could feature alongside another concept previewing the affordable electric vehicle for India. However, no official confirmation has been made yet. While the EV could be a couple of years away, the micro SUV will reportedly launch later next year.
Thus, the concept could be in its close-to-production stage amidst having a flamboyance of its own to greet show attenders at the motoring exhibition. The five-seater will likely sit below the Venue compact SUV in the brand’s domestic lineup. The micro SUV is said to be in its final stages and it could be introduced during the next festive season.
Internally codenamed Hyundai Ai3, it will compete against Tata Punch, Renault Kiger, Nissan Magnite and the likes. The Punch has been well received amongst customers since its debut late last year and the same space could be targetted by Hyundai. The Casper is the entry-level SUV sold by Hyundai in the global markets but it is deemed to be too small for India.
The Hyundai Ai3 project received the nod before the health crisis took its toll and the production model will be positioned as a Compact Utility Vehicle. It will have larger proportions than the Casper and will be underpinned by the same architecture as the Grand i10 Nios compact hatchback and Aura sub-four-metre sedan.
The micro SUV is believed to be powered by the same 1.2-litre petrol engine as the Grand i10 Nios and Aura and a CNG variant could join the portfolio in the future. To achieve the estimated yearly production of 50,000 units, the South Korean auto major has invested nearly Rs. 1,470 crore to expand its manufacturing capacity.
We can expect Hyundai to aggressively price the upcoming micro SUV and its top-end variants could be made available with a rich feature set. It could have a high ground clearance and a spacious interior to attract a wide band of consumers.