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Hot wheels: New cars to look out for in India in 2019

This year will witness some fantastic moves from the automobile industry. Gone are the days when it was all about budget cars. The market has evolved and is moving ahead

Suchayan Mandal | New Delhi |


Car enthusiasts in the country, hold your breath, for this year is going to be remarkable. Although this isn’t the year for the Auto Expo, which is when the maximum new concept cars are found, but a lot of new cars are in the pipeline for you. There has been dip in sales during the festive season of this financial year, but car makers don’t seem to be startled. Rather they are investing more in creating major milestones in terms of new concepts, sustainability and safety. The beginning of the year has started off as a game changer month for the auto market already with sales picking up, if reports are to be believed. No longer is the market dependent on buyers who are in for a car that goes soft on their pockets. Rather, the evolved consumer now opts for a compact SUV, thinks about safety measures, after sales service, and then decides to buy. Thankfully, car makers now know what Indians want. So there is a long list of upcoming cars that will roll out this year — a line-up of almost 25 car launches.

Let’s take a look at the top fresh launches:

Tata Harrier

New Tata Harrier will be hitting the roads soon with the deliveries starting this month. Built on Range Rover’s Discovery platform, the SUV will compete with the likes of Jeep Compass, XUV 500 and Hyundai Creta. This 5 seater SUV comes with 2.0 litre diesel engine along with JBL speakers, safety features and terrain select drive mode.

Price: Rs 12.69 lakh onwards
Expected delivery: Mid-March 2019

READ | Tata shows glimpse of H7X SUV (7-seat Harrier) ahead of March debut

Toyota Camry

Camry’s revamp was long due. When most cars of this price bracket had oodles of technological additions, Toyota Camry was still boasting its outer beauty. But the new car looks dashing. The front grille is large and makes the car stand out, quite similar to Lexus ES. Camry will be rival to the Honda Accord Hybrid, Skoda Superb and Volkswagen Passat. Camry is powered by a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol hybrid engine that puts out 177 hp at 5,700 rpm and 221 Nm of torque 3,600-5,200 rpm. There is an 8 inch touchscreen infotainment and a 7 inch multi-information instrument cluster. As usual, the interior looks plush.

Price:Rs 36.95 lakh onwards
Expected delivery: March 2019

Maruti Suzuki Wagon R

The popular tall boy hatchback from Maruti Suzuki is back with an improved design. This is a favourite car among cab drivers in India. While the Japanese version of the car looks radically different, the carmaker has played safe in India and kept the earlier design line intact with some bits of alterations. The engine will still continue to be 1.0 L, however there is an optional 1.2 L available as well. A touchscreen infotainment comes as a major introduction in small car. The car comes with dual airbag as standard across all variants. However with Tata Tiago having been sold 2 lakh units till now, it looks like the road is uphill for Suzuki as the former comes in a better package.

Price: Rs 4.19 Lakh onwards
Delivery: Has started

Hyundai QXi

To take on Tata Nexon and Renault Duster, Hyundai is coming up with a compact SUV, codenamed QXi. As per the concept car, QXi will have a grille that looks similar to Kona or Santa Fe. There is an LED DRL eyebrows, which seems a very in-thing in car design ethos. Dual tone colour might be on offer. Interior would look quite inspired from Creta.

Expected price: Rs 7 Lakh onwards
Expected launch:April 2019

Tata Altroz

The Tatas have brought in competition in almost most categories till now. However it had missed out on a premium hatchback. And that’s where Altroz fits in. This car will compete with Hyundai Elite i20, Volkswagen Polo, Honda Jazz and Maruti Suzuki Baleno. As per the concept, this car would get a stylish and glossy black front grille, projector headlamps and LED daytime running light (DRL). Some of the aesthetic components will be adapted from Harrier like the touchscreen infotainment system at the centre console.

Expected price: Rs 5.8 lakh onwards
Expected launch: August 2019

READ | Tata teases Altroz ahead of 2019 Geneva reveal

Nissan Kicks

While in the Middle East, Nissan has a good market, its India share is at a miniscule. Customers have often found it hard to find a good after sales service.Nissan has launched its compact SUV Kicks to take on Hyundai Creta, Tata Nexon and Suzuki Brezza as per the pricing. There will be 1.5 litre petrol and diesel engines on offer. While the exterior styling of the car makes it look smaller, the interior gets most standard features of cars in this segment. The boot gets enormous but with a Nissan badge in the grill, it’s wait and watch for the market observer.

Price: Rs 9.55 lakh onwards
Delivery: Has started

Honda Civic

This is the car Indians have been longing for quite some time. Civic was quite a popular premium sedan in the market. Honda is bringing it back with official launch next week. This will compete with Hyundai Elantra, Skoda Superb and Toyota Corolla Altis. The 10th generation Honda Civic will be available in both petrol and diesel engines. The sedan will get a 1.8-litre i-VTEC petrol engine producing 141 PS of power at 6,500 rpm and 174 Nm of torque at 4,300 rpm. While the petrol is available only in automatic (CVT), diesel variant will get manual transmission. With sunroof and touchscreen infotainment system, the cabin looks premium than before. The car is expected to stay ahead of the pack with Skoda’s poor service network and Corolla’s need for up gradation.

Expected Price: Rs 18 lakh onwards
Launch: 7 March 2019

MG Hector

This British carmaker will be entering the Indian market with an SUV Hector that will be competing with Jeep Compass and Hyundai Tucson and Tata Harrier. The front grille is big with the MG logo embossed upon it. The car is based on Baojun 530 platform of MG Motors. It will have an all-black interior. There should be ABS, traction control and Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) as standard. The infotainment screen should be big, as per the reports.

Expected price: Rs 20 lakh onwards
Expected launch: June 2019

Kia Tusker

Kia is a popular car maker in South Korea and is all set to launch its ‘Made in India’ cars this year. By the look of the car, this SUV will compete with Hyundai Creta, Tata Harrier and Jeep Compass. As displayed at last year’s Auto Expo, SP Concept based Tusker will come with LED headlamp eyebrows, like the Harrier, and of course the much talked about Tiger Nose Grille of Kia Motors. As per the segment standard, the engine might be 1.2 litre turbocharged petrol and 1.6 litre turbocharged diesel.

Expected price: Rs 10 lakh onwards
Expected launch: October 2019