Not so long ago in India, the very word SUV used to indicate a diesel engine under the hood. With the rise of compact SUVs, petrol engines are making a big comeback in this segment. The narrow price gap between petrol and diesel fuels, the lower price of petrol powered vehicles, and tightening anti-pollution legislation, is shifting demand towards petrol powered crossovers and SUVs. Today, we take a look at 10 affordable, petrol powered SUVs.
Dr. Pawan Goenka has revealed that 45 % of the 21,000 strong order book for the KUV100 is for the petrol powered variants. This is a clear indication of how the wind is blowing. The KUV100 is a Micro SUV that starts from 4.45 lakh rupees, making it the cheapest petrol SUV in India. It’s powered by a 1.2 liter-3 cylinder engine that puts out 82 Bhp-115 Nm. A 5 speed manual gearbox drives the front wheels.
Not many know that the Rio from Premier Engineering was the first sub-4 meter compact SUV of India. The Rio is also extremely affordable, with prices starting from 4.71 lakh rupees. The vehicle uses a 1.2 liter-4 cylinder petrol engine with 77 Bhp-104 Nm outputs. You’ll also be surprised to know that the Rio is rear wheel driven, making it a rarity in the compact SUV segment.
Maruti Suzuki Gypsy
The Maruti Gypsy has many unique attributes. It’s the only affordable petrol SUV with a 4X4 transfer case, which gives it great off road ability. It’s also the only ladder frame equipped petrol SUV in the affordable segment. The Gypsy starts at 6.04 lakh rupees, and is powered by a 1.3 liter-4 cylinder petrol engine that puts out 80 Bhp-110 Nm. A 5 speed manual gearbox is standard while creature comforts such as power steering and air conditioning are unavailable.
The Ford Ecosport offers not one, but two petrol engines, and is the only affordable SUV to do so. The 1.5 liter-4 cylinder Ti-VCT naturally aspirated motor makes 108 Bhp-145 Nm while the 1 liter-3 cylinder Ecoboost turbocharged motor makes 125 Bhp-170 Nm. While the Ecosport 1.5 starts from 7 lakh rupees, the 1.0 version starts from 8.74 lakh rupees.
Renault offers the Duster with a 1.6 liter petrol engine that puts out 102 Bhp-145 Nm. A five speed manual gearbox drives the front wheels. Though most of the Duster’s sales come from the diesel variants, the petrol variants are for those who do less than 1,500 Kms a month. Prices of the Duster Petrol start from 8.31 lakh rupees.
The Terrano is the badge engineered version of the Duster, and shares the same mechanicals as the latter. However, Nissan has priced the compact SUV higher than the Duster, which means that it starts at 9.99 lakh rupees. Curiously, that’s the same price from which the diesel version of the Terrano starts. However, the petrol version (XL) offers more kit than the diesel (XE) as the differentiating factor.
The Creta is another SUV that gets some traction from its petrol powered version. A 1.6 liter-4 cylinder VTVT petrol engine with 122 Bhp-154 Nm powers the vehicle, while a 5 speed manual transmission powers the front wheels. The Creta is among the most powerful petrol powered compact SUVs in India.
The Honda BR-V will soon be launched. The 1.5 liter i-VTEC petrol engine with 117 Bhp-145 Nm, which is also seen on the Mobilio MPV and City sedan, will power this compact SUV. A 7 seat layout for the BR-V will mean that it’ll be the only 7 seat SUV in India to be powered by a petrol engine.
Maruti Suzuki Ignis
Maruti’s entry into the Micro SUV segment will happen later this year, with the Ignis. The 1.2 liter K-Series petrol engine is likely to power this car. This engine has been on a wide range of a Marutis, from the Swift and Dzire to the Ritz and the Baleno. The Ignis is expected to be front wheel driven, with a 5 speed manual gearbox handling torque transmission.
The Nexon will be a turbocharged crossover, even in petrol guise. Tata Motors is likely to power the vehicle with a 1.2 liter REVOTRON turbo petrol engine in 108 Bhp-170 Nm state of tune. The Nexon will also be the most powerful sub-4 meter compact SUV with its 1.5 liter diesel motor putting out 108 Bhp-260 Nm.