India’s biggest biennial automotive convention - the 2014 Delhi Motor Show - that was recently concluded in the capital saw launches, unveilings and presentations of more than seventy cars and motorcycles. It was of course, a tough task then, to pick out our top five favourites. But nonetheless, we have made an effort to list out some of the contenders, who we would like to see zipping on the streets of India in the months to come.
- Honda Mobilio MPV
Maruti Suzuki Ertiga’s arch rival, the Honda Mobilio MPV finally got to make its first public debut on the Indian shores at the Expo Mart in Greater Noida. First seen at the Indonesian Motor Show in 2013 at Jakarta, the Mobilio is the third Honda car that has been derived from the Brio platform after the Brio hatchback and the Amaze sedan. Especially designed for the emerging markets in Asia, the Mobilio features sporty styling on the outside, while retaining a comfortable cabin on the inside with a seating capacity of seven in a three into two configuration.Under the hood, we expect to see the current 1.2-litre petrol unit and the 1.5-litre diesel engine that currently serves the Amaze. The engine will come mated to a 5-Speed manual gearbox. We also hope to see an automatic gearbox thrown in the mix.
The Honda Mobilio MPV is scheduled to launch in the Indian market during 2014-15 and when it does it will compete with the likes of Maruti Suzuki Ertiga, Toyota Innova, Mahindra Xylo, etc. We expect the price tag of the Mobilio MPV to read between Rs 7.0 lakh and Rs 12 lakh.
- 2014 Honda Jazz
In addition to Honda Mobilio MPV, the Japanese automaker delivered one more blockbuster model at the Auto Expo in the form of all-new 2014 Jazz - a model that was discontinued back in 2012 owing to poor sales and generally a very trying time for Honda. 2014 however, will be blessed with the all-new Jazz in its third generation, which has been updated with fresh design and increased cargo carrying space and refined performance.
Powering the all-new Jazz hatchback is the 1.2-litre i-VTEC engine and the 1.5-litre i-DTEC diesel power plant. Both engine will come mated to a 5-Speed manual gearbox. Honda has stated that its all-new Jazz will revolutionise the small car segment in the times to come. We reckon with stellar looks, record breaking efficiency figures and ridiculously competitive prices, the all-new 2014 Honda Jazz hatchback could indeed shake up the stagnant and crowded small car segment.
- 2014 Toyota Etios Cross
The much hyped Toyota Etios Cross finally bowed to the public for the very first time in the capital earlier this month. Based on the Etios Liva, the Etios Cross is basically the crossover version of its hatch counterpart and will directly rival the Volkswagen Cross Polo and the upcoming Fiat Avventura in the Indian market.
Differences between the Etios Liva hatch and the Etios Cross are limited to only visuals, with no changes to the driving and performance capabilities. Engine options include two petrol units and one diesel unit. The petrol range consists of 1.2-litre unit that is rated at 80PS and a 1.5-litre unit that is rated at 90PS. The 1.4-litre diesel power plant on the other hand, produces 68PS of max power. The Toyota Etios Cross, which is already available on sale in the international markets such as Brazil and Argentina is expected to hit the Indian streets in the next three months. The company has not yet, disclosed the pricing for the Etios Cross.
- 2014 Fiat Punto Avventura
Giving their respective hatchback, the crossover treatment is not new in the automobile industry. We already have the Volkswagen Cross Polo, while Toyota as mentioned above is readying the Etios Liva Cross. Joining the new breed of compact crossovers then, is the Italian automaker Fiat who presented the all-new crossover avatar of its flagship Punto at the Auto Expo. And they have christened it the Fiat Punto Avventura.
The Avventura Crossover on the outside has been made to look a lot more rugged than its hatchback counterpart. This has been achieved with additional plastic cladding all around the lower bodywork of the car. Like the case is, with conventional SUVs, the Punto Avventura will feature tailgates mounted on the spare wheel. The alloy wheels design is similar to the one, which is seen on the Fiat 500 models with orange treading while, the exhaust has been carried over from the Linea T-Jet. Under the hood, we hope to find the 1.3-litre Multijet engine, which is tuned to produce either 75PS or 90PS. Once officially launched in the Indian market, the 2014 Fiat Punto Avventura will go head with the Volkswagen Cross Polo and the upcoming Toyota Etios Liva Cross.
- 2014 Merecedes Benz GLA-Class
In a surprise move, Mercedes Benz India not only showcased the European-spec production vehicle of its smallest SUV at the convention, but also confirmed that the GLA-Class will grace the Indian shores before the end of 2014. Merc’s baby-SUV is based on the company’s new and versatile front-wheel drive MFA platform that has already proved its capability with the stunning A-Class, CLA-Class and the B- Class Sports Tourer. Making use of Merc’s aggressive design DNA coupled with luxurious class-leading interiors, the GLA-Class will undoubtedly, shake up the luxury compact SUV segment in India. The soft-roader will be brought into the country via the CBU route and will be offered in both petrol and diesel engine options that will come mated to a 7-Speed dual clutch transmission. When launched, the GLA will go head on with the likes of the Audi Q3 and the BMW X1.