The year 2015 saw vehicle sales go up in India, thanks to Creta, Kwid and Baleno turning a zillion heads on the roads.
And as 2015 comes to a close, here’s a look at what new cars 2016 has in store for us. We have kept the 30-40 face lifts expected in the new year out of this list. When we say new, we strictly mean new!
1.Maruti Suzuki Ignis
Renault has changed the way we look at hatchbacks. We no longer want a simple, sometimes cute and curvy model under Rs 4 lakh when it comes to entry-model cars. Maruti seems to get this as well with this new beefy, aggressive-looking car called Ignis. Under the hood, everything is the same reliable Maruti Suzuki equipment - 1.2-litre petrol and 1.3-litre DDIS diesel. Expected to be rolled out in the latter half of 2016.
We have already told you about this #fantastico car from Tata Motors. It is the entry-level hatch just above Nano and has a new engine on a new platform and new looks. Just waiting for the price tag to be closer to Rs 3.5-4 lakh and it can be a hit.
Mahindra is going places in an attempt to “Live young, Live free”. This time, those LED eyes lurking from the dark are of a smaller, better vehicle named KUV100 . It is a more compact version of XUV500 and we expect it to be priced around Rs 4.8 to 7 lakh to hit success with the new mFALCON engine family.
Remember the last Chevy that hit the market? Well, they called it Enjoy - an MPV which could neither become a family van nor a successful taxi. So late 2016 might see General Motors spin its new ball on the Indian pitch with a more contemporary MPV called Spin to take MS Ertiga and Honda Mobilio head on in the Rs 7-10 lakh price bracket.
Come 2016 and Honda might ask for some tarmac for its crossover BR-V equipped with the City-borrowed engines and an automatic version. In a segment dominated by compact SUVs and sports MPVs, we know they are late, but better late than never.
When Fiat launched the Linea in India in 2009, we were mesmerised by its sheer beauty and the power options under the hood. But it’s fame faded over time and its 2014 facelift too did not fare well. Now, the Italian giant is eyeing to replace it with a “born to be a sedan” Fiat Tipo in 2016, with two petrol and two diesel variants and with an automatic transmission option too. And like Linea, this one is also awe-inspiringly stunning too!
If Hyundai and Samsung are the only Korean brands you have heard of, Mahindra will give you one more shot. Mahindra you ask? Yes, the Indian automaker, which brought the underrated SsangYong Rexton to us in 2012, will come out with a Korean-styled crossover called Tivoli specially packaged for India with the new mFALCON engine from its stable. It was unveiled at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show and if priced right, Duster and Creta might have a run for their money.
Aria was a good, power-packed offering from Tata but, unfortunately, it had the looks of an MPV. And the growing compact SUV market subsequently killed it. Tata Hexa seems to be a rebirth of the same MPV (Tatas would not like us calling it like that!) only more rugged and beefed up with aggressive styling. The price may go up to nearly Rs 15 lakh as you get more of it this time.
9.Jeep Grand Cherokee
If your first love was a Jeep, 2016 is the year you might just get lucky. Because Fiat Chrysler Automobiles will bring the iconic American war legend to India during the 2016 Auto Expo. And if all goes well, the amount you would have to shell out for this one will be just under Rs 30 lakh.
Jaguar is making itself more accessible to Indians now. By targeting the entry-level premium sports segment of the Merc C-class, BMW 3 series and Audi A4, this British carmaker will be exciting us with its latest offering at about Rs 40 lakh.
11.Volvo S60 Cross Country
Forget the compact SUV or the compact sedan. Volvo is eyeing a new segment by making a cross sedan! Shocked? So are we. Well, this is just a power packed, taller and a boyish sedan which can run off the road too. A 2.0-litre diesel mill and an AWD transmission is most likely the Indian offering from Scandinavia. Well, wait for a couple of months, you might just be the trendsetter.
If Jaguar’s F-Type was heaven, its SUV brother F-pace is hot as hell! It’s amusing and is giving its sister company Land Rover a complex. Though it’s an all-aluminium crossover, this one is a calling. Trust us, you won’t regret earmarking Rs 70 lakh till end 2016 for this one.
13.Range Rover Evoque Convertible
A “topless model” was never this sexy! Range Rover has truly evoked our feelings for the already great Evoque with a convertible. If we had Rs 70 lakh, we won’t mind waiting until next December to take this one on the roads… and we bet, you won’t either!
The iconic muscle car, which has been a favourite for over 50 years now, is finally set to make its debut in India, thanks to the right-hand drive version. Own this American legend for only Rs 1 crore.
The first SUV from the luxury car marque is an eye catcher. You should follow Bentley on Instagram to fall in love with this one until you can buy it at the end of next year at the hefty sum of Rs 2.8 crore.
16.Rolls Royce Dawn
For the elite, tech-savvy and super luxury car buyers, here’s an uber, tech-loaded and premium offering from the makers of the iconic Phantom and Ghost. A 6.6-litre V-12 engine on the base of a Wraith and with the top taken off, this is a new Dawn for Rolls-Royce who don’t just want to show-off, but also want to be seen in the car.
BONUS: New Volkswagen Beetle
Though the Beetle didn’t fare well for Volkswagen in India, we all love it for its cute looks and hence it deserves a bonus mention. Amid the emissions trouble, Volkswagen dares to bring the Beetle back to India with more engine options than before - from a 1.2-litre TSI subtle mill to a 200bhp 2.0-litre powerplant. Any buyers excited this time for this toy worth Rs 35 lakh?
Did we miss anything out? Planning to buy any of these? Do let us know @GulshanMWankar with #HTAuto