Snapshot – The web definition of game changer reads, an event, idea, or procedure that effects a significant shift in the current way of doing or thinking about something. In the very dynamic car market, game changers come every year and change the way buyers look at vehicles, and the way competitors respond. 2015 will have its share of game changing car launches that will redefine segments, create new segments and in some cases, change the way we look at mobility, with the BMW i8 hybrid sportscar being a case in point. Join us, as we take you through 5 upcoming cars in India, with each of them having the potential to change the way the game is played.
Maruti Suzuki Celerio Diesel
The Maruti Suzuki Celerio gave the Indian car buyer a taste of automated manual transmission (AMT) technology, and we have other car makers now scurrying to equip their vehicles with AMTs once the Celerio’s success was seen. In the months to come, the Celerio could do another Midas act, by ushering in the first twin cylinder turbo diesel motor into the Indian car market. The 792cc twin cylinder turbo diesel motor is touted to deliver 30 Kmpl on the Celerio, making the car the most fuel efficient mass market offering in India. Note the emphasis on mass market, for the BMW i8 has changed the game already. A 5 lakh rupee price tag is expected for the Celerio Diesel.
Mahindra Halo Electric Sportscar
There are cars, and then there are electric cars. Mahindra wants to do a Tesla and make India see the potential of high performance electric power by means of the Halo. Displayed at the 2014 Indian Auto Expo a a concept, the Halo electric sportscar is scheduled to debut later this year. The car will bring in a 160 Kph top speed and a 200 kilometer range, stuff that’s unheard of in the electric car landscape of this country. Electric cars are all about acceleration and the Halo delivers the 0-100 Kph sprint in under 8 seconds. The only downside we can think of in the Halo is it’s looks, which is oddly Platypus-like. 15-20 lakh rupees is likely to be the asking price for this electric driving machine.
DC Avanti Sportscar
The DC Avanti will give India her first affordable sportscar, and a homegrown one at that. Designed and executed by DC Design, a brain child of design boss Dilip Chhabria, the Avanti is almost launch ready. To command an ex-factory price of about 35 lakh rupees, bookings for the Avanti are currently open for a sum of 5 lakh rupees. The production version of the Avanti will feature a two liter, turbocharged petrol engine sourced from Renault. 240 Bhp-340 Nm outputs are likely from the mid-mounted engine, along with a 6 speed manual gearbox to drive the rear wheels. A 180 Kph top speed, limited for safety, and a 0-100 Kph acceleration timing of under 6 seconds is how fast the car will be.
Mahindra S101 Micro SUV
The Hindustan Ambassador is no-more, but the 3+3 seating configuration will firmly belong once again to an Indian marque, as Mahindra is all set to launch the country’s first Micro SUV in the form of the S101 code-named product. The S101 will also be the first. sub-4 meter Mahindra SUV to be launched with petrol and diesel power. Monocoque bodied, the S101’s sharp pricing is expected to be its major selling point. A price tag under 5 lakh rupees is anticipated, even as the Indian automaker tries to lure hatchback buyers into SUV territory with the S101. A launch in this year’s festive season is on the cards for the first Micro SUV from Mahindra.
Mahindra XUV500 Diesel Hybrid
The diesel powered Mahindra XUV500 knocked the wind off many a D-Segment sedan’s sails, by pandering to Indian car buyers’ desire of a butch looking, affordable SUV that’s loaded to the gills with safety features and creature comforts. The next big step for this crossover will be the addition of a hybrid system, one that will make it an undisputed leader in terms of running costs, further tilting scales towards it. The diesel hybrid version of the XUV500 was displayed at the 2014 Indian Auto Expo and is expected to be on offer later this year, when Mahindra facelifts its flagship offering. A near 20 % bump up in fuel efficiency could be the result.