The sub-compact SUV segment has been on fire for quite some time now. The reason for this being the practicality these cars offer along with that SUV-like appearance. Before this segment existed, people would have to shell out quite heavily if they wanted to buy a proper SUV, but this space offered affordability and now customers whose limited budgets restricted them to a premium hatchback can also opt for an SUV without having to pay extra.
While it is an already crowded segment, its unparalleled popularity has meant that other manufacturers also want to dive into this segment. As of now, there are six sub-4 metre SUVs in India, namely Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Hyundai Venue, Tata Nexon, Ford EcoSport, Mahindra XUV300 and Honda WR-V. However, there are four other manufacturers who are set to join the space by introducing their own respective sub-compact SUVs by the end of this year.
After the success of the Seltos and the Carnival, Kia has lined up its third product for India, the sub-4 metre SUV Sonet. Its concept was revealed at the AutoExpo 2020 and gained a thumbs up from the audiences. It is based on the same platform as the Hyundai Venue and therefore it is expected that it will share the same powertrains from its Korean cousin.
From the looks of it, the Sonet will sport a distinctive design similar to what was showcased at the 2020 Auto Expo in the concept form. Apart from that, the Sonet will be equipped with a few unique features but will be priced aggressively like the Venue.
Renault Kiger (HBC)
French automaker, Renault has started testing their much-awaited sub-4 meter SUV, codenamed HBC in India. Rumoured to be called the Kiger, the compact SUV will be based on the CMF-A+ modular architecture that also underpins the Kwid and the Triber MPV. It will be powered by a 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine, which is likely to produce around 99bhp of power and 150Nm of torque. This engine was showcased by Renault at the AutoExpo 2020. Transmission options will include a 5-speed manual and a CVT automatic.
Renault is set to offer a host of features including a sun-roof maybe, and the vehicle will be priced quite aggressively, which would make it one of the most affordable cars in this segment along with its cousin, the Nissan Magnite.
Japanese automaker Nissan has released a couple of teaser images of its upcoming global compact SUV, codenamed EMP2. Likely to be called the Magnite, the sub-4 meter SUV will be based on the same CMF-A+ platform that underpins the Triber and the upcoming HBC Kiger. It is likely to be powered by the same 1.0-litre turbocharged petrol engine which would power the Renault Kiger and would likely be mated to a 5-speed manual or a CVT.
Above pictures are for representation only
It is set to be priced competitively in the range of Rs 6.5- Rs 9.0 lakh(ex-showroom) and will be packed with equipment with features such as a giant touchscreen, connected-car tech, 360-degree camera, two-tone paint options and a premium set of alloy wheels. It is expected to be launched somewhere around the festive time of the year.
Toyota’s Version Of The Vitara Brezza
Toyota will make use of its global agreement with Suzuki, and borrow Maruti’s Vitara Brezza to introduce a sub-4m SUV based on it. Just like the Glanza, a Toyota-badged version of the Vitara Brezza will soon be launched in the Indian market. The car is expected to retain almost everything, from its overall design to the powertrains. However, some styling changes will be made, which will distinguish between the Maruti-Suzuki model and the Toyota model.
The car will be plonked with the same 1.5-litre petrol rated at 105 PS/138 Nm engine as the Vitara Brezza and will come with the same transmission option of a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed torque converter as an option. It will be launched at a similar price point as the Vitara Brezza.