2017 has been a very exciting year, in terms of lucrative SUVs hitting the Indian shores. But, this one is something really special, as it comes from a thoroughbred Off-Road SUV maker Jeep, which owns a commendable name in the market. JEEP couldn’t shine in the Indian market in 2016, due to its SUVs made available to customers via CBU route, which resulted in bizarre prices. Well, they don’t seem to be making the same mistake again, as they have now setup a plant at Ranjangaon to produce this baby Cherokee, which bags loads of up-market premium feels, combined with Fiat’s Trusted 2.0L Multijet Turbo diesel engine and 1.4L Multiair Turbo Petrol Engine. This SUV produces a good to do 173 PS of power and 350 NM of torque. Its rugged built, mated to a roomy ground clearance of 200mm and 17” alloy wheels, will help this baby brute to do some serious off-roading too. The pocket pinch is kept in mind too, with a price tag starting from Rs. 15 lakhs to a top end trim of about Rs. 20 lakhs. Rivalry faced by this FCA’s new venture will be the much loved Indian car Mahindra & Mahindra’s XUV 500. Along with that, it will also play tad too bit with people having likings for Hyundai Tuscon and TATA Hexa.
First week of October marked the launch of Skoda’s first 7 seater SUVs which will potentially mingle with those who possess likings for the legendary Toyota Fortuner, Ford Endeavour and even to the entry level premium SUVs like Audi Q3, BMW X1 and Mercedes GLA. With its earlier expedition in SUV segment, Skoda did not receive a very happening response with the launch of Yeti. But, this time around, they have made it an objective to make this SUV stand apart from the crowd, with the dynamically flowing creases, Large chunky butterfly grills on the front and the amount of pronounced detailing given to the this beast. India being a chauffeur driven market, it would have been really easy for Skoda to stuff Kodiaq with some mind blowing features and keeping the comfort level inside the car at par excellence. As claimed by Skoda, Kodiaq will be more of an On-Road deal, added with some benefits of soft Off-Roading instead of a hard-core Off-Roader. Buttery smooth ride, with passengers cocooned in the lap of luxury, is what we expect from this car. Behind the wheel will be a remarkable experience too, as this car produces 148 bhp mated to torque figure of 340 NM from a 2000cc Diesel engine which is carried forward from the Volkswagen Tiguan. Another feature inherited in case of the Kodiaq is the Volkswagen’s MQB platform, to keep the ride pliancy in check. Pricing of about 35 lacs, which constitutes of all the top line premium SUV gismos and a badge by Skoda, should make this car an immediate success.
Maruti Suzuki S-Cross
For the very first time, we get to see such modern design cues on a Maruti Suzuki. Front now comes with a chrome grill with vertical slats, Black cladding, Larger Air damps and new wider wheels. All the power pack addition to the predeceased S-Cross, makes this one look quite intimidating and appealing at the same time. On the inside, alterations have marked a pronounced recognition with the new Piano black trim on the centre console and the soft feel material on the dashboard. Under the hood, we have a 1.3 litre diesel engine which produces 90 bhp on the whole, coupled with a torque figure of 200 NM. Further, the engine is integrated with Maruti Suzuki’s Smart Hybrid Technology which makes the car way more efficient and eco-friendly. Sadly, we won’t get to see the 1.6L Diesel Engine anymore; neither the 1.4 Litre booster jet engine could make its way to Indian shores. This Maruti SUV can be yours for a rather generous and easy on pocket price bracket of 8.5Lacs to 11.3Lacs. Well, one thing which Maruti Suzuki needs to be bothered about is the competition they face from the other cars in the same segment. Hyundai Creta has been creating history since the day it was launched. Renault Duster is no less and now it comes with an elder sibling Renault Captur. Therefore, it’s going to be a tough fight for Maruti to withstand rivalry against some of the established SUVs.
It was the sheer experience of Maruti Suzuki that they knew their customer cues so well and came up with a mid-sized SUV, Vitara Brezza. This car created loads of hustle and bustle in the automobile industry. Many a car makers came up with new products to stand strong in the competition. TATA is one of them. 2016 was first when we were shown some mind blowing visuals of the TATA Nexon concept. Soon in 2017, it reached the Indian soil and is all-ready to give a tough competition to its rivals. Affordable price range of 6 Lacs to 9.5 Lacs is attracting a good deal of customers, especially when we all know that there are some exclusive features like that of the Wrist band keyless entry & go, Rear AC vents with dedicated climate controls, Driving Modes and umbrellas in both the doors, which can be seen in this segment for the very first time. Its looks on the outside don’t have to do much of the hard work to please its clientele and stand out from the crowd. Apart from that, we also have the TATA certified 1.2L Turbocharged Petrol engine from Revotron series and 1.5L Diesel Engine from Revotorq series. These engines are tried and tested and churn out some decent numbers like 110 PS of power, coupled with whooping torque of about 260NM. Modern world gimmicks and premium salons inherited features are also playing a vital role behind this car selling like hot cakes.
First look at the car and you already start feeling that this mid-sized SUV is out of some popular video game, designed to suit your desires and needs, with some funkiness. It’s based on the platform of its sibling, the Renault Duster. However this car is a little compressed and lesser on numbers, when exteriors are taken into account. Design and Styling seem to be the prominent proportions of the car. Cues from Kwid and Duster are also apparent in the car, which is not expected from a new experiment of a renowned company like that of Renault. Cabin is amply spacious and is stuffed with features, but has cheap plastics used here and there generously, along with that of the dashboard which isn’t soft touch. Veteran K9K 1.5 L diesel engine marks its presence in the new Captur too, which churns out numbers like 110PS, coupled with a torque of about 240NM. Class leading 210mm of ground clearance mated to a surefooted predictable handling with negligible body roll, acts as its USP. But in the end, we would like to say that it’s a cosmetic update to the worn out Renault Duster, with a few tweaks here and there. Pricing is expected to be tad too high as compared to Duster. However, it seems quiet promising like Duster and hungry enough to conquer the Indian market the way Duster did, post 2012. Renault Captur is expected to capture and cater to people having the likings for the Hyundai Creta, Jeep Compass and the newly revised Maruti Suzuki S-Cross.