SUVs are becoming more and more popular not only in India but on the global level as well. For the same, more and more manufacturers are jumping in the SUV bandwagon in order to maximize their profits. One such manufacturer is Hyundai, which launched the Venue sub-4 meter SUV in India just a few months back. According to a report by Digital Times, the South Korean manufacturer will now be working on a micro SUV that will directly rival the Maruti Suzuki S-Presso when launched in India. That Hyundai could consider making a micro SUV was revealed last year by Y K Koo, the former MD & CEO of Hyundai’s Indian subsidiary but now the press report claims that the project is confirmed for production.
For now, this new micro SUV has been given a codename ‘AX’. As for the launching of this new S-Presso rival, that is expected to happen only in 2021 which means that the car has quite a lot of time left before it sees the sunlight. The Hyundai ‘AX’ may sit on the K1 platform which also underpins the Hyundai Santro. The car will be sold in India along with several international markets including South Korea. Hyundai is aiming at an annual production target of around 70,000 units for the AX micro SUV.
While a lot of details are not yet out about this new micro SUV, it could use a 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine as its powerplant. When launched in India, the car would compete with the likes of the Renault Kwid and Maruti Suzuki S-Presso. While the Kwid was the one to popularise the concept of a micro SUV-hatchback crossover in India, Maruti Suzuki will launch the S-Presso in India this month which could bring in big sales numbers for the company.
If the S-Presso becomes a success, Hyundai will definitely want to bring the AX micro SUV in India in time so as to enjoy a market already established by its rivals. To let you know, Tata is also working on a micro SUV codenamed Hornbill which is expected to be launched by the end of 2020. However, it is likely to be positioned slightly higher than the Renault Kwid and the Maruti Suzuki S-Presso.
Hyundai has already captured the sub-4 meter and compact SUV market with the Venue and Creta respectively. The introduction of the AX would mean that the brand has three SUV crossovers that start under Rs. 10 lakhs. Expect the AX to use the Santro’s 1.1-litre petrol unit in India and to be made available with both a manual and an AMT gearbox. With the launch probably happening in 2021, Hyundai could have another winner in its hand if it prices the AX wisely and offers a good level of equipment.