The FY 2014-15 was an year of revival for the Indian four-wheeler industry after 2013-14 proved to be the worst year of the past decade. Though the first 8 months of the ongoing calendar year may not have been exciting, some automakers managed to maintain a moderate growth banking on new product launches. So to maintain the momentum, our carmakers are planning to bring more all new products in the next 12 months.
Here’s a list of 4 cars that will enter the most competitive segment of the industry – budget hatchback.
1. Renault Kwid
Renault India that launched the Lodgy MPV and a special edition of the Duster this year, is now all set to launch its highly-anticipated product – the Kwid – in the country. Expected to launch by the end of this month or early next month, The Kwid is based on a new platform – CMF-A – which has been jointly developed by Renault and Nissan. Powering the vehicle will be a 799cc, 3-cylinder petrol engine that, mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox, churns out 54bhp and 72Nm. Claimed to be the country’s most fuel-efficient petrol car, the Renault Kwid will rival Maruti Suzuki Alto 800, Hyundai Eon and Datsun Go.
Expected Launch: By the end of September or early October, 2015
Expected Price: Rs. 3 lakh – Rs. 4.5 lakh
2. Datsun redi-GO-Inspired Hatchback
Though Nissan’s low-cost car brand, Datsun, already has a budget hatchback, called the ‘GO’, the company is now working on an even cheaper hatchback to take on the Maruti Alto 800. The redi-GO-inspired hatchback will be built upon the CMF-A platform – the one that will also underpin the Renault Kwid. The engine will also be same as the one for the Renault’s small car i.e. the 799cc, 3-cylinder petrol unit. Since the company currently doesn’t have a small diesel engine, the small hatch might be launched with only petrol and LPG options.
Expected Launch: Early 2016
Expected Price: Rs. 2.50 lakh – Rs. 4 lakh
3. Tata Kite Hatchback
Tata Motors is working on a new hatchback, codenamed the Kite, to replace the ageing Indica eV2. Though there is no clarity on what engine options the small hatch will come equipped with, Tata Motors has an option to utilise the 1.2-litre petrol and the 1.4-litre diesel units. Both these engine also power the Indica. Since the company has already started testing the vehicle in India, expect it to be rolled out sometime in the first half of 2016.
Expected Launch: End of 2015 or Early 2016
Expected Price: Rs. 3 lakh – Rs. 5 lakh
4. Tata Pelican 800
Besides the Kite siblings – a hatchback and sub-compact sedan – the homegrown automaker is working on yet another affordable hatchback, codenamed Pelican, to take on the likes of Maruti Alto K10, Hyundai Eon, and others in the segment. Though the Pelican will be based on the Nano, it will be a slightly more up-market product with a bigger engine. The company will position it between the Nano and the Kite hatchback. If reports are to be believed, the company is working on a 1000cc petrol engine and a 800cc diesel motor that might power several entry-level Tata cars, including the Pelican.
Expected Launch: 2016
Expected Price: Rs. 3 lakh – Rs. 4 lakh