2015 will see Hyundai entering the Compact SUV/Crossover segment in India with not one but two new vehicles, in the form of the i20 Elite Cross and the iX25 Compact SUV. New buzz emerging about these cars suggests that the crossover model will be launched in April 2015 while the SUV will arrive in time for Dusshera/Diwali. Both cars will spearhead Hyundai’s entry into disparate segments.
The cross segment is presently populated by the likes of the Fiat Avventura, the Toyota Etios Cross and the Volkswagen Cross Polo, which recently received a 1.2 MPI petrol variant. This segment has not yet taken off in India, with none of the aforementioned cars really making a dent in the automotive universe. Riding high on the big success of its hatchback sibling, the i20 Elite Cross will be aiming to change all of this.
The i20 Elite Cross is essentially a modified version of its hatchback namesake. The Cross is touted to gain revised suspension, boosted ground clearance and upgraded brakes. In terms of engines and gearboxes, the 1.2 liter Kappa petrol-5 speed manual and the 1.4 lirter CRDI turbo diesel-6 speed manual combinations will drive the front wheels of the car. An all wheel drive layout is not in the works, even as an option.
The crossover is expected to be priced at about 40,000-50,000 rupees higher than equivalent hatchback variants of the i20 Elite. Prices could start from about 5.3 lakh rupees, going all the way up to around 8 lakh rupees. Butch cladding all around, projector headlamps and LED tail lamps, features and interiors, all of which are straight lift offs from the hatchback model, will be standard on the Cross variant.
The other big launch, the iX25 Compact SUV, could gun for both the Ford EcoSport and the Renault Duster. A factor that will help Hyundai price the iX25 competitively is the 90 % plus localization that the automaker is targeting for the vehicle. Since the iX25 measures over 4 meters in length, both 1.4 liter and 1.6 liter petrol and turbo diesel engines are likely to be offered, with manual transmissions as standard fare.
Automatic gearbox options could be lined up on petrol powered variants as doing thus for the diesel powered models could make the compact SUV too pricey for Indian tastes. A front wheel drive layout will be standard with the possibility of an all wheel drive layout being offered as an option. The iX25, along with the i20 Elite Cross will be built at Hyundai’s Sriperumbudur facility, off Chennai.