It is the time of Internet Cars in India. First it was MG Hector and next to follow is Kia Seltos. The foray of these internet connected cars seems to be rapidly changing the face of our auto market. The hot segment in the country has been the compact SUV segment for the past few years. Now this new internet connected technology is what customers are all excited about. While it might seem impractical to many, let me remind you folks, this is the digital era and you ought to see some change in this sector too. So let us welcome internet cars and don’t be surprised when I say bikes too in the near future.
In the last couple of years, three foreign car manufacturers announced their debut in India - Kia, Citroen and MG. All these three manufacturers planned to retail models ranging between 10 lakh to 30 lakh in the country. However, MG Hector seems to have attracted the Indian audience partly because of the way it looks and party because of the novelty that it brings to the table with the whole new Internet Car tag.
20 years ago, BMW launched X5 in the global arena for the first time. However, Indians got this model only in 2015 and since then it has undergone many updates year after year. BMW has now upgraded the feature and specs on this best selleronce again to present the all new 4th generation X5. When the brand launched the first SUV in India and which is really sporty and multipurpose vehicle for adventure lovers. BMW focused much more luxury, more space, more comfort and more refinement in this 4th generation X5.
When we think of hybrid cars, the first name that comes to our mind is Toyota. Since 2002, Toyota Camry has been in India, quite popular as an executive sedan. However in 2013, this model was given a facelift only to be re-launched with a hybrid system. After a couple of years, Toyota once again brings Camry, this time in its 8th generation equipped with Toyota’s New Global Platform and 4th gen Hybrid Electric system. This makes the new Camry more driver oriented, safer to travel and a value for money model.
“BAAZ” was the nick name suggested by a Twitter user when Anand Mahindra had asked for a name suggestion before launching their much anticipated SUV Alturas G4. When Tata bought the luxury brand Jaguar Land Rover, Mahindra bought the Korean brand Ssangyong and brought them to our country revamped to suit the needs of Indians. Apparently in years that followed, they launched SUV Rexton but sadly could not make an impact on the segment. Mahindra however did not give up and revamped Ssangyong Rexton only to be launched as Alturas G4 to retail in the market here. Yester year Rexton borrowed engine and platform from Mercedes M Class while New Alturas G4 is built on an entirely new platform and does not carry any features from the past generation model.
The car which left us in 2013 is now reborn after five long years in a new avatar. Yes, today I plan to write about the all new “Honda Civic” 2019 edition. The executive sedan from Honda, Civic was born in Japan in the year 1972. Since then, it has been the most sold car from the house of Honda. Sales volumes claim that approximately 2.5 crore units of Civic have been sold till date around the globe.
Here we have a mild Crossover which can handle your daily city drive to your office and back and which you can take on your weekends to those hilly sections where the roads are not quite so good.
After acquiring the Korean brand Ssangyong, Mahindra & Mahindra went on to implement great change in the SUV segment in India. XUV300 was born from the soul of Ssangyong’s Korean model ‘TIVOLI”. Tivoli was launched in 2015 by Ssangyong in Korea and now is being sold across 50 countries all around the world that accounts to almost 2.6 lakhs units of sales.
A land that was once the abode of great Sultans and mighty Mughals, a land that claims Yamuna River as its lifeline, the capital city Delhi was where Tata chose to launch the performance based variant, Tigor JTP. The historical place where Qutab Minar, Lal Qila and Jantar Mantar are flooded with tourists every year seemed to have displayed a new face with the launch event of this sports variant.
BIGGER AT HEART
It has been over a year since Datsun launched the redi-GO in India and the car has been selling in good numbers all this while. Though they had launched two other budget cars- the GO and GO+ earlier, none of them managed to sell much. This is when the redi-GO arrives as the ‘life-saver’ for the Japanese automaker in the country.
In the last couple of years, there had been one vehicle which used to be called the baby SUV . None other than the X1! The smallest member of the macho X Series with a cool engine , miniature body line and an affordable price tag. As it successfully completes its seventh year , BMW decided to give it a total revamp thereby launching the second generation X1. This all new X1 2016 spells the term 'Next Generation' in every part with its sophisticated technology and uber cool design.
The customers who drive Volkswagen cars will naturally become fans of this model whether they pick to drive hatchback model Polo or luxury vehicle Passat. With German engineering as its base Volkswagen has a good exterior styling. It has also very stable handling. Volkswagen started making compact sedan named Ameo for the Indian Auto market two years back. The company was extremely cautious that this particular model cannot afford to fail in this market. The model possessed all elements required to look extremely attractive, competitive and look distinct on the road.
All these years, Maruti Suzuki lacked just one thing inspite of earning the fan following of millions of Indians- a compact SUV. Even though an SUV Vitara was launched into the market long back, its heavy pricing and lack of a diesel variant kept it away from us Indians who had a general notion of opting any other brand instead of Maruti while planning for an expensive vehicle. But as they introduced the launch of a premium sedan Ciaz and a lifestyle hatchback Baleno retailed through its lifestyle showroom Nexa, the whole approach of people towards Maruti Suzuki changed. People came forward to buy expensive vehicles from the same brand they had ignored a couple of years ago.
Kolkatta: A city of dirty streets and bungalow type colonies. At the same time, a city of grand residential “palaces” and skyscrapers . City of yellow-painted Ambassador taxis. It was at the last stage of a drive from Kochi to Bhutan that we landed in Kolkatta. The route to Bhutan was from Kochi to Kolkatta-Siliguri-Jaigaon.
This time, the visit to Kolkatta was with a different purpose. The purpose was to test drive the small hatchback DATSUN Redi-GO. This is the vehicle segment that sells most in India. The land of Maruti Alto 800, Hyundai Eon and Reno Quid. Into this market enters DATSUN Redi-Go. The earlier models of DATSUN were GO and GO+. Lack of standard was the reason for their failure. The Indian prefers a vehicle of high standard even if somewhat more costly. The cost-reduction focus was the undoing of GO and GO+. While driving Redi-GO, one felt that DATSUN had learned the lessons from these failures. Here follows a detailed Test Drive Report.
We Indians have been familiar with the term Jeep through many models from Mahindra. Recently did many of us come to realise that Jeep was in fact not a vehicle model, but the American Car maker brand who introduced few of the prestigious SUVs to the world since 1941. Back then, they were named American Motors and were quite popular through the ubiquitous Jeep Willys of that time.