SUVs are the new trend in the automobile industry. Every manufacturer now has a ‘SUV’ in their line-up because they are selling like hotcakes. A new segment was introduced in our country called “Micro SUV”. These are basically the smallest size of SUVs which might look like just a jacked-up hatchback. They are light, easy to manoeuvre, pocket friendly and perfect for city commutes. They have a rugged-looking exterior and a high driving position to give that commanding view that a person gets from a SUV. Here, are three micro SUVs that are on sale in India.
Tata Punch – New kid on the block
The Punch is the latest micro SUV to join the Indian market. It is also the best looking micro SUV that is currently on sale. Punch looks like a mini version of the Harrier. The ride quality of the Punch is very good, it absorbs everything that the Indian roads can throw at it. The quality of the cabin is best in the segment, so is the space on offer and the list of equipment. As of now, Punch is the safest vehicle in the Indian market. The downside of the Punch is its engine which feels a bit underpowered sometimes. Also, the infotainment system of the Punch is not the smoothest.
Here are the latest news on the Tata Punch
Pricing, variants and specifications
Punch starts at Rs. 5.49 lakhs ex-showroom and goes up to Rs. 9.09 lakhs ex-showroom.
It is available in four variants, namely Pure, Adventure, Accomplished, and Creative.
The petrol engine is a 1.2-litre unit that produces 86 PS of max power and 113 Nm of peak torque. It is offered with a 5-speed manual gearbox as standard. However, we would suggest that you opt for the 5-speed AMT because it complements the engine better and also comes with a Traction Pro Mode that can help you get out of sticky situations.
Tata Punch Reviewed on Video
Maruti Suzuki Ignis – Current market leader, under threat from Tata Punch
When Maruti launched the Ignis in the Indian market, it was not received well because of its styling. It has a somewhat polarizing design. People either love it or just do not get interested. Maruti Suzuki said that they are aiming for millennial buyers with the Ignis. Last year, they launched a facelift of the Ignis and now it looks more rugged. It comes with large windows with a high seating position. This gives a commanding view of what is ahead and also makes it easier for the person to drive the car.
It has a ground clearance of 180 mm which is very good for our bad Indian roads. The amount of space on offer is very generous. So, four people can easily travel at once. You might get bothered with the hard plastic quality that Maruti Suzuki has used. Also, the mid-spec variants do not come with the SmartPlay infotainment system. So, it looks like the infotainment system has not been integrated well into the dashboard.
Pricing, variants and specifications
Maruti offers Ignis in four variants, namely Sigma, Delta, Zeta, and Alpha. It is sold only through the Nexa premium dealerships. The prices start at Rs. 5.10 lakhs ex-showroom and goes up to Rs. 7.47 lakhs ex-showroom. It comes only with a 1.2-litre petrol engine that produces 83 PS of max power and 113 Nm of peak torque. It is a punchy and rev-happy motor. So, enthusiasts would like to drive it. You can get it with a 5-speed manual gearbox or a 5-speed AMT.
Mahindra KUV100 – Lagging behind in sales
Mahindra KUV100 was one of the first micro SUVs in India. With the facelift, Mahindra changed the name to KUV100 NXT. It comes with rugged body cladding and high ground clearance. It is quite a practical vehicle. You can get it as a 5 or a 6-seater layout. It also comes with a flat rear floor so the rear occupants get enough knee room. The boot space of the KUV100 is not quite good and you cannot get it with an automatic transmission.
The prices start at Rs. 6.08 lakhs ex-showroom and go up to Rs. 7.74 lakhs ex-showroom. It is available in four variants, namely K2+, K4+, K6+, and K8. The KUV100 NXT comes only with a petrol engine. It is a 1.2-litre naturally aspirated engine that produces 82 PS of max power and 115 Nm of peak torque. It comes mated to only a 5-speed manual gearbox.