The Tata Nexon has been launched today and with prices starting as low as 5.85 lakh ex-showroom Mumbai, it’s set to be on of the strongest contenders in the sub-compact SUV segment. It will share its market space with Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza and the Honda WR-V (although this qualifies more as a crossover than as an all-out Compact-SUV). The Honda WR-V is one of Honda’s most successful cars yet overthrowing their all-time best seller the Honda City in less than a year in terms of gross sales. Its compact dimensions and rugged nature make it a strong seller with more than 3000 units entering the market every year. However, the Nexon’s most aggressive rival will be Maruti-Suzuki’s Vitara Brezza, which has been a huge hit in the Indian market, Maruti Suzuki recently released a statement saying that they were producing almost 10,000 units every month, in spite of which there are still waiting periods of up to 6-months on the Brezza.
The Nexon is possibly the best looking of the three, we love the fact that from concept to completion the Nexon has lost very little. Tata’s Impact design philosophy shines through as the sub-compact SUV targets the younger aspirational crowd in India. The flowing coupe style trick roof-line diminishes it's otherwise segmented par dimensions making it look compact, to balance that out Tata have added well-rounded wheel arches, 16-inch wheels and 210mm of ground clearance.
In terms of design, the Vitara Brezza can be considered the most “vanilla” offering in the segment. It has the classic styling of an SUV, simple boxy lines seem to be the theme for the Brezza. Now Maruti is offering the Brezza with their i-create platform which does allow for a bit of personalisation, but we do feel like Maruti could have pushed the envelope a little further where design is concerned.
The WR-V has been positioned as a crossover, but the trained eye will notice that the WR-V sans plastic cladding is basically a Jazz. This, however, does not change the fact that it’s unique hatchback dimensions means that it seems friendlier to handle in congested cities than the other two. Crossover hatchbacks have always been well accepted in India and that more than enough to quantify the WR-Vs success.
|Tata Nexon||Maruti Vitara Brezza||Honda WRV|
|Ground clearance||209mm||198mm||188 mm|
|Boot space||350 litres||328 litres||363L|
The Nexon gets the best interiors we've ever seen on a sub-10 lakh Tata car. The dashboard gets a rubberized finished dashboard with gloss silver accents on the front. The glove-compartment is cooled and lit and you get a piano black finish on the centre console. Even the buttons are well damped and feel premium to touch thanks to the use of quality material. There's a 6.5-inch touchscreen with Apple Car Play, Mirror link and Android Auto which allows for seamless connectivity between cellphones and the infotainment systems.
The Vitara Brezza benefits from a commanding driving position, while the rest of the cabin is neatly laid out, providing a great user experience. The cabin can be customised via the Maruti i-create platform and is well thought out in terms of storage and cubbies, this includes two separate glove boxes. The plastic quality could have been better more so when compared to the Tata Nexon. Even the 328-litre boot seems like an undersell although the low placed loading lip makes it easier to load and unload items stored in the boot. The Brezza does come with cruise control which makes it the only car in the segment to offer the feature. The Brezza only get Apple Car play and Mirror link and the absence of Android auto could be a setback.
The all-black interiors on the WR-V might be the most simple of the three, although the WR-V does not miss out in terms of kit. It has climate control and all the bells and whistles that you would find on other models in the segment. The absence of Android Auto and Apple Car Play is quite glaring, with respect to the competition. However, Honda's build quality shines through on the WR-V with topnotch plastics and switch-gear.
This is one segment where on paper the Tata Nexon seems to have the competition by a long shot, the 1.2-litre petrol and the 1.5-litre diesel both make a respectable 108 hp, significantly more than its rivals. the Petrol motor may seem a little bit high strung, running out of breath easily without a boost from the turbo. The diesel mot, however, r is on the money making a massive 260 Nm of torque making it engaging, even exciting to drive.
The Vitara Brezza misses out seriously when it comes to engine option being available with only the Fiat sourced 1.3-litre engine that makes a paltry 90 hp, the least in the segment, at the part with the WR-V petrol motor. It is just about sufficient although it gets tired easily.
The WR-V offers the 1.2-litre engine that it shares with the Amaze and the 1.5-litre I-DTEC diesel from the Honda City.
|Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza||Tata Nexon(Petrol/Diesel)
|Power (hp)||90 hp/99hp||90 hp||108/108 hp|
|Torque (Nm)||110Nm/200Nm||200Nm||170/260 Nm|
|Displacement (L)||1.2l/1.5l||1.2l||1.2/1.5 l|
Tata's strategy of undercutting the competition is clear from the price lists, the price deficit between the two biggest players in the segment. Where the Petrol Nexon starts at 5.85 lakh ex-showroom Delhi, the base WR-V will set you back by 7.79 lakh almost 2 lakh more than the Nexon. The diesel base on the Nexon is Rs 6.85 lakh in comparison to the Vitara Brezza's 7.38 offset by almost 50,000 rupees considering that the Nexon comes preloaded with ABS and dual airbags as standard.
|Variant||Petrol (In Rs)||Diesel(In Rs)|
|XE||5.85 lakh||6.85 lakh|
|XM||6.49 lakh||7.39 lakh|
|XT||7.29 lakh||8.14 lakh|
|XZ+||8.44 lakh||9.29 lakh|
|XZ+ (dual tone roof)||8.59 lakh||9.44 lakh|
|Honda WR-V||Price (ex-showroom Delhi)|
|S MT Petrol||Rs 7.79 lakh|
|S MT Diesel||Rs 8.85 lakh|
|VX MT petrol||Rs 9.03 lakh|
|VX MT diesel||Rs 10.4 lakh|
Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza
|Price (ex-showroom Delhi)|
|Ldi||Rs 7.38 lakh|
|Ldi(O)||Rs 7.51 lakh|
|Vdi||Rs 8.05 lakh|
|VDI (O)||Rs 8.18 lakh|
|Zdi||Rs 8.82 lakh|
|Zdi Plus||Rs 9.81 lakh|
|Zdi Plus dual tone||10.01 lakh|