Snapshot – The great Indian festive season has commenced and July saw a rash of car launches here. As August kicks in, car maker will move up a gear in terms of launches, with a healthy mix of facelifts and all-new models lined up. Cartoq profiles six major car launches in India, scheduled for August 2014.
Fiat Punto EVO Hatchback
Fiat India’s biggest car launch of the year will be that of the facelifted Grande Punto hatchback, due to happen on the 5th of August. Dubbed the Punto EVO, the car gets revised styling at both the front and rear ends. Unique to the Indian car market, the styling elements from the Punto EVO are likely to filter down to international variants in the months to come. The interiors of the car get a major once over too, with the dashboard leagues ahead in terms of the look and feel, when compared to that on the pre-facelift model. The engines and gearboxes of the Punto EVO will be carried over from the pre-facelift model, and that means both petrol and turbo diesel power to choose from.
Audi A3 Sedan
Audi’s big ticket volumes bagger, the A3 sedan, will arrive into India on the 7th of August. A best seller worldwide, the Audi A3 is based on the Volkswagen group’s MQB future focused platform. The car will share its assembly line with the Skoda Octavia, India first MQB platform based car, at Aurangabad. The Audi A3 sedan will be sold with turbo petrol and turbo diesel engine options. All variants of the car will be equipped with automatic gearboxes and front wheel drive layouts. The Audi A3 sedan will sit in between the Q3 crossover and the A4 sedan in terms of price and positioning. Competition for the Audi A3 will come from the Mercedes Benz CLA sedan from the end of this year.
2015 All-New Hyundai i20 Elite Hatchback
The all-new i20 hatchback is Hyundai’s second major launch in the Indian mass market car segment, after the Xcent compact sedan’s launch earlier this year. In its all-new avatar, the i20 jumps onto the Fluidic 2.0 design bandwagon and the interiors of the car also see a major once over. Beige dominates proceedings on the feature rich insides, and the 2015 i20 promises to be a segment leader in terms of the sheer number of comforts on offer in its segment. Tellingly, Hyundai calls the 2015 i20 the Elite and India will be the first car market in the world to receive this car. While petrol and diesel engines will be carried over from the older model, the 2015 i20 gets more spacious innards. Hyundai has lined up the 2015 i20 for a launch on the 11th of August.
Tata Zest Compact Sedan
Tata Motors will launch the Zest compact sedan, a day after the all-new i20’s launch. An important product for the Indian automaker, the Zest compact sedan embodies Tata Motors’ latest design philosophy and a range of new segment-topping features such a turbo petrol engine, an automated manual transmission on the diesel variant and a touch screen infotainment interface. The Zest will sit in the sub-4 meter sedan space. While bookings are open and production has begun, the crucial price announcement will happen only on the 12th. The car will share its X1 platform underpinnings with the Bolt hatchback, due to arrive later this year.
Volkswagen Polo GT Twins
The end of August is likely to see Volkswagen India unleashing high performance variants of the Polo hatchback by means of the GT TSI and GT TDI models. Both cars will get the facelifted bits that are seen on the 2014 Polo Highline variants, along with more powerful turbo petrol and turbo diesel engine options. A 1.2 liter-4 cylinder TSI turbo petrol engine (103 Bhp-175 Nm) and 7 speed dual clutch DSG automatic gearbox will be offered on the petrol powered GT TSI while the GT TDI will use the newly introduced 1.5 liter-4 cylinder TDI (103 Bhp-250 Nm) turbo diesel engine mated to a 5 speed manual gearbox. Both cars will sit at the top of the facelifted Polo line up in India.