Two of the vehicles that are eagerly anticipated by the Indian automotive industry in the New Year are XUV 300 and 45X. Both are 'make in India' products and the makers are Indian firms - Tata and Mahindra. They now make vehicles in India and export them to several parts of the world. They also own well-known European names such as Jaguar, Land Rover and Pininfarina. With a big line-up of vehicles and an eye on future, they are forging ahead in India.
SUV & premium hatch
If Mahindra's small SUV XUV 300 is a successor to XUV 500, the premium hatchback 45X was the star of the auto expo in 2018. Both these cars will be launched by the middle of this year. And, both these cars will aim to plug the existing gaps in the Indian market and challenge their rivals.
Codenamed S201, the new vehicle from Mahindra will hit the market next month. This will be the Indian car manufacturer's small SUV after the launch of its premium SUV Alturas. XUV 300 is pronounced as XUV, three double 'oh'. It is based on Mahindra-owned Korean car maker Ssangyong's Tivoli compact SUV that is sold in international markets. Hence, one can expect international standards in this Mahindra car. Since it measures less than four metres in length, it will attract lesser tax and help make Mahindra price the car competitively.
Ssangyong shares technology with Mercedes. The partnership deal that began from assembling vehicles has grown into building own vehicle with Mercedes-Benz components. By using the engine, gearbox and other components of Mercedes, Ssangyong too became a trusted name in the automotive world. Now, through Mahindra, these advantages will come to India too.
XUV 300 is loaded with innovative technology, features and luxury touches. You can expect several segment-first features such as a sunroof, larger touchscreen infotainment system, cruise control, dual-zone automatic climate control, seven airbags, disc brakes on all four wheels and LED headlamps and taillamps, among others.
Apart from the 1.5-litre diesel engine from Marazzo, XUV 300 could also get a 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine. With the diesel capable of churning out 123 bhp of peak power, XUV 300 could well be the most powerful SUV in the segment. Details about the petrol variant are yet to be revealed. On the pricing front, the car will compete with small SUVs in the market.
Though Tata provided premium hatchback features in Tiago, the 45X will help the carmaker fill the gap of not having a larger hatchback. 45X is the codename and Tata will name the car when it is ready to be launched. Tata is offering its new modular platform and its new Impact Design 2.0 design language in 45X. To make it clear, if Tiago, Tigor and Nexon had the Impact Design 1.0, the 45X is a generation ahead and sports the new design language which Tata is slated to use on its future models of cars.
The Land Rover lineage that is being brought to India through Harrier will be a step ahead in 45X. Tata will be bringing Jaguar's design innovations, technology and luxury to India through 45X. You can also expect more space than any other car in the segment.
The car, which is much bigger than Tiago, is currently undergoing testing. Though engine details are yet to be revealed, it is expected that the 1.2-litre turbo petrol from Nexon and a retuned 1.05-litre diesel engine from Tiago will make it to 45X. The car could also come with an automatic gearbox. If Tata gets the pricing right, it could give sleepless nights to rivals.