With an expected 80 or so vehicles to be launched or unveiled at the 2016 Auto Expo, it’s sure going to be a crazy and equally exciting show. To give you an idea of what to expect at the biennial event, we present to you the list of vehicles making their way to India. After looking at what all Mahindra and Tata will bring, here we take a look at Maruti and Hyundai.
Let’s start with the market leader,
Apart from displaying the current line-up of cars and even a few modified versions (as always), MSIL will be making some major unveiling and launches next month.
Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza
The compact SUV segment hasn’t seen any product from Maruti, but that’s going to change with the Vitara Brezza. An official teaser image and a few spy shots confirm high ground clearance, use of projector headlamps, and a slightly boxy styling. The vehicle will be front-wheel drive, is likely to use the same engines as the Baleno, and is expected to feature dual airbags and ABS as part of the standard equipment. The project is handled by the company’s chief engineer Mr C V Raman.
The Renault Kwid successfully managed to cash in on the love our market has for crossovers, and now with the KUV, Mahindra intends to do the same, albeit in a segment above. Maruti Suzuki Ignis can be MSIL’s offering in the segment. Unveiled late last year, the vehicle looks good, and can really help give the company a jump-start in the segment.
Maruti Suzuki Baleno RS
It’s no secret that Maruti Suzuki is currently testing a more powerful version of the Baleno, one that’s powered by Suzuki’s new BoosterJet turbocharged petrol engine. With an output of 110 PS and 170 Nm, it’s expected to make an entry in the enthusiast oriented hatchback segment, and rival the likes of Polo GT TSI and even the much more powerful Fiat Abarth Punto. Keep in mind that the Baleno is one of the lightest vehicles in the segment (tipping the scales at 905 kg), and that is certainly going to work in the vehicle’s favour. What remains to be seen is whether MSIL launches a bodykit equipped Baleno RS atop the Baleno line-up or puts in some more effort to bring out something that actually deserves the ‘RS’ badging.
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz facelift
While Maruti Suzuki couldn’t add the Ciaz to the premium NEXA dealership – given its positioning, it ideally belongs there – the company is looking at selling the Ciaz facelift via NEXA. The vehicle isn’t old by any means, but expect the company to give its flagship sedan a mild facelift at the 2016 Auto Expo. Powertrain choices are unlikely to change.
Other vehicles that can be seen at MSIL’s exhibit can be the awaited seven-seat Wagon R and the new Vitara. The former is based on the Wagon R but gets another row of seats and will primarily rival the Datsun GO+. The latter, on the other hand, could be displayed to gauge public response.
Hyundai is keen to widen its portfolio in the Indian market, and the Auto Expo exhibits are likely to show how. The company won’t just introduce new products and mark its presence in segments that haven’t been touched yet, hugely revamped versions with current nameplates might also make it to the show. Here is the list:
Hyundai ‘IP’ MPV
While the MPV sales go largely to Maruti (Ertiga) and Toyota (Innova), Hyundai has been absent from the scene. The company is expected to introduce an MPV based on the i20’s platform – something on the lines of the Hexa Space concept showcased at the 2014 Expo.
Hyundai is reportedly looking at positioning a crossover SUV above the i20 Active but below the Creta. To be unveiled at the Expo, the vehicle is likely to use the same engines as the i20. But it’s clear that Hyundai is very serious about its SUV efforts, which explains why there’s going to be another SUV at the Expo.
The Tucson name will return to India with a vehicle positioned below the Santa Fe but above the Creta. The new Tucson was made official last year. The Korean carmaker clearly knows what works for the Indian customer, so while an AWD system might still not be on the priority list, an automatic gearbox on both petrol and diesel engines (shared with the Elantra) are sure to make it to the country.
The Hyundai Elantra is also expected to make an appearance at the 2016 Auto Expo, while a launch could happen towards the end of the year. The new vehicle looks better than the current car, but is also larger than before. Engine options are likely to remain unchanged.
Apart from the above-mentioned vehicles, Hyundai, like Maruti, will have its concepts and other products which aren’t on sale in India at the Expo. Expect vehicles like the Genesis sedan, the i20 N Sport, etc. to be present as well.
Baleno RS rendering’s source