Yes, you’re hearing right. The Hyundai Santro and the Suzuki Jimny are among the five finalists for the World Urban Car Award 2019. The jury will choose between these two cars, and three others – Audi A1, Kia Soul and Seat Arona -to hand out the award on the 17th of April, at the New York Motor Show of 2019.
The Hyundai Santro is the only Indian car among the five shortlisted finalists for the world urban car of the year award. The car, code-named the AH2, was introduced in India last year, and is the least priced offering that Hyundai sells here. The Santro has made a comeback into India after more than half a decade, and is in its second generation for the Indian market.
The car has replaced the Eon as Hyundai’s entry level car in the Indian car market. For now, the Santro is available exclusively in India. In the coming months and years though, Hyundai is likely to export the Santro to many countries around the world as an inexpensive, entry-level hatchback. Currently, the Hyundai Santro sold in India is powered by a single petrol engine – a 1.1 liter-4 cylinder unit with 68 Bhp of peak power and 99 Nm of peak torque.
The engine is also available with CNG-Petrol dual fuel option. The engine is paired with two gearbox options – a 5 speed manual and a 5 speed AMT. Prices of the Santro start from Rs. 3.9 lakhs, ex-showroom Delhi, and go all the way up to Rs. 5.64 lakhs. The mileage of the Santro is rated at 20.3 Kmpl, and the car competes with the likes of the Maruti Alto, Renault Kwid and Tata Tiago.
As for the Suzuki Jimny, the off-roader was introduced last year, and has instantly become a best seller. Suzuki is now looking at expanding production outside of Japan thanks to the massive demand. The Jimny is currently available only in short wheelbase trim, and in a year from now, a long wheelbase version is expected to hit global markets. The Jimny is one of the most affordable off-roaders in the world.
It’s offered with 2 engine options – a 660cc, triple cylinder turbocharged petrol engine and a 1.5 liter-4 cylinder naturally aspirated engine. Both engines get 5 speed manual gearboxes as standard while the bigger engine also gains a 4 speed torque converter automatic. The Jimny sits on a body-on-ladder frame, and gets a four wheel drive layout as standard.
While there has been talk about the new Suzuki Jimny being built in India, there has been no official announcement regarding this from Maruti. The latest Jimny’s grand father – the Maruti Gypsy – will soon go out of production in India. It remains to be seen if Maruti Suzuki brings in the new Jimny as a replacement to the Gypsy or simply chooses to stop making entry-level off roaders. As for the off roading community in India, they’re eager for the Jimny to be built and sold here.