Snapshot – The compact SUV segment is super hot in India with many car makers competing with each other to bring their best wares here. While a big list of compact SUVs are coming our way in the next 2-3 years, a bunch of prominent absentees deflate some of aura around this segment. CarToq lists out five compact SUVs that should have, but which aren’t coming to India.
The Toyota Rush is a ladder framed SUV that could have proven to be an alternative to the EcoSports and the Dusters of this world. Alas, Toyota has no plans to introduce this SUV in India. The Rush sells primarily in South East Asian car markets and comes with a 1.5 liter petrol engine. Based on the IMV platform, the Rush is a seven seat SUV in a compact footprint with Daihatsu origins.
The Rush is a rebadged Daihatsu Terios, whose previous generation has found a convoluted way into India through the Premier Rio. Since the Rush sold in ASEAN markets is petrol only, the lack of a diesel motor option on this SUV is a bid dissuading factor as far India is concerned. Perhaps, this was what Toyota thought too before deciding to not bring the Rush to India. For now, Toyota has the pretender Etios Cross for Indian buyers.
The Chevrolet Trax is the latest compact SUV sensation from General Motors. Although the SUV is sold in many developed markets, India’s first compact SUV from GM will not come until 2017. Even then, the Trax isn’t what General Motors has outlined for India. Instead the American car giant will launch the production version of the Adra SUV concept that was showcased at the 2014 Indian Auto Expo. The Trax, available with petrol and diesel engines, could have proven to be too expensive for the cost conscious Indian market.
Another compact SUV whose cost considerations have weighed down on its Indian entry is the Honda Vezel. The crossover was unveiled at last year’s Tokyo Motor Show and is currently on sale in Honda’s home market of Japan. The US-spec Vezel will be called the HR-V. Instead of the Vezel, Honda will launch a Brio based SUV in India. However, the Brio-based compact SUV bound for the Indian market will take at least until 2017 to become production real.
Fiat’s original plans included an SUV for the Indian market in 2015. The plans have now been junked and the Italian car maker will chug along with the Grande Punto platform based Avventura crossover styled hatchback. The 500X crossover, which will be sold in developed markets, will remain there and not make it to Indian shores in the foreseeable future. This isn’t surprising considering the fact the Fiat 500X comes from the 500 range of cars, which have always been positioned at a premium in India. At this juncture, a premium crossover priced at about 20 lakh rupees doesn’t make sense for the Indian market or so has Fiat decided.
The Jeep Renegade is probably the biggest disappointment in the list of SUVs that haven’t made it to India. The compact SUV had a lot riding for it in the Indian context, what with Fiat India planning local manufacture and even exports. With Jeep’s arrival into India itself under a cloud of sorts, the Renegade is a no-go for India. The compact SUV will be sold in other parts of the world as Jeep’s entry level SUV offering. Consolation? Jeep says that it will launch a higher priced, C-Segment SUV in India. Not very convincing, isn’t it?