Maruti Suzuki and Toyota are expected to launch three-row SUVs in the near future to take on the likes of the Mahindra XUV700
The XUV700 has been one of the biggest successes for Mahindra in recent times mainly due to its good dynamic abilities, a packed features list, powerful engines and expansive range. The XUV700 is also offered in five- and seven-seater configurations addressing a wide range of customers. It will have to face new rivals from Maruti Suzuki and Toyota and other brands are also working on new seven-seater SUVs.
1. 7-Seater Toyota Corolla Cross:
The Corolla Cross is currently on sale in the international market and its wheelbase will likely be extended for India to accommodate the third row. On the outside, some of the significant design elements could be retained but it is expected to have longer rear doors and a redesigned rear due to the possible changes behind the B-pillars.
The seven-seater Toyota Corolla Cross sits on the same TNGA-C platform as the recently launched Innova Hycross. Thus, it could share the 2.0L four-cylinder NA petrol and the 2.0L Atkinson Cycle TNGA strong hybrid petrol engine with the MPV. In addition, it will be positioned above the Urban Cruiser Hyryder and below the Fortuner full-size SUV. The larger Corolla Cross is expected to launch next year or in 2025.
2. Maruti Suzuki Grand Vitara XL:
Maruti Suzuki will reportedly introduce the three-row version of the Grand Vitara by the middle of this decade. In 2025, the largest car producer in the country will also bring in its first electric SUV. The three-row Grand Vitara will be underpinned by the same Global C platform and will share its equipment list with its five-seater sibling.
To likely be dubbed Maruti Suzuki Grand Vitara XL, the midsize SUV could be equipped with more premium features and the exterior could receive updates to differentiate itself from the existing Grand Vitara.
As for the performance, the 1.5-litre three-cylinder TNGA strong hybrid petrol engine found in the Grand Vitara and Hyryder could be utilised. It will become the flagship ICE SUV from Maruti Suzuki upon its arrival and a six-seater variant with a middle-row captain seat arrangement is also a possibility.