Snapshot – Over the next 3 months, nearly a dozen car launches have been lined up for the Indian market. Of this, we pick out half a dozen interesting car launches, many of which are hotly anticipated models that are crucial to their makers’ fortunes.
Renault Lodgy MPV
The Renault Lodgy arrives tomorrow as the French automaker’s first MPV offering in India. Rivaling the Toyota Innova in terms of dimensions, the Lodgy is expected to be play the value card by getting priced in between the Ertiga and Innova. The Lodgy will be sold in diesel-only guise, with the 1.5 liter K9K turbo diesel motor being made available in 84 Bhp-200 Nm and 108 Bhp-245 Nm states of tune. Five speed and six speed manual gearbox options will drive the front wheels on the low and high power variants respectively.
Audi TT Sports Coupe
The Audi TT sports coupe is the second MQB platform underpinned car that the German luxury automaker will launch in India. The car shares its platform with the Audi A3 sedan, and uses a 2 liter TFSI turbocharged, direct injection petrol motor for propulsion. This engine makes 228 Bhp of peak power and 370 Nm of peak torque. The torque is channeled to all four wheels by means of a 6 speed twin clutch DSG automatic gearbox and a Quattro all wheel drive mechanism. Performance will be thrilling, with a sub 6 second 100 Kph run from standstill, and a top speed well over 220 Kph. The Audi TT sports coupe will be a CBU import with a price tag close to the 60 lakh rupee mark. The car’s market launch will happen on the 23rd of April, 2015.
Tata Nano Twist Active
The Nano will get loaded with more features, apart from facelifted front and rear ends. The facelift will be carried over to the inside of the hatchback too. The car’s Twist Active variant will feature an open-able hatch lid as one of the major upgrades. On whether the 5 speed automated manual transmission option will make it to the latest Nano upgrade is a matter of speculation. The 624cc, twin cylinder naturally aspirated petrol motor will be retained, along with its 37 Bhp-51 Nm power and torque outputs. The car will continue to be rear wheel driven while an electric power steering will also be offered. With production already on at Sanand, the new Nano variant seems weeks away from a launch.
Mahindra XUV500 Facelift
The facelifted XUV500 has been leaked onto the interweb and it is only a matter of time before the flagship Mahindra crossover is launched in India. The facelift is mild with the front end receiving new headlamps, a revised chrome grille, a bumper insert and a reprofiled bumper. The alloy wheels gain a new design while the rear remains largely unchanged. The insides of the crossover are likely to gain a feature or two. Mechanically, the 2.2 liter turbo diesel engine and 6 speed manual gearbox with front wheel and all wheel drive options will be retained. An automatic gearbox could make an appearance as a part of optional equipment.
Tata Safari Storme Facelift
The Safari Storme will be revised with mildly tweaked exteriors and interiors, with the 2.2 liter turbo diesel motor benefiting with more power and torque. The facelifted Safari Storme is expected to be launched close to the time when its arch-rival, the Mahindra XUV500 Facelift will go on sale. In terms of changes, a new front end with a grille and bumper job are exterior embellishments while the inside will gain a new center console, replete with an integrated stereo unit while the steering wheel will be borrowed from the Zest. The 2.2 liter turbo diesel motor is said to gain power and torque, with the figures being upped to 156 Bhp-400 Nm from 138 Bhp-320 Nm.
Ford Figo Aspire Compact Sedan
Soon, the Figo Aspire compact sedan will replace the Classic in Ford India’s line up. The car is a sub-4 meter offering, and marks Ford’s maiden entry into this hugely competitive segment. The car looks stellar and also packs enough ammunition to be a performance benchmark of its segment. The 1.5 liter Ti-VCT petrol motor (108 Bhp-145 Nm) and 6 speed PowerShift twin clutch automatic gearbox are expected to give the Figo Aspire segment leading thrust. A 1.5 liter TDCI turbo diesel engine will be served up for the frugal minded. A smaller petrol engine, in this case the 1.2 liter Ti-CVT unit, is also expected to be offered. A June launch is said to be on the cards.