In a price sensitive market like India, Hyundai has hit a sweet spot with its Creta SUV. It is proof that the south-Korean carmaker has understood the Indian market and Indian conditions well and the Creta SUV was introduced at the right time just before customers' desire to own an SUV hit its peak. Hyundai Creta made its India debut in 2015 and very recently earlier this year the SUV got a major facelift that further boosted the sales of the SUV.
Hyundai Creta has been among the top-selling cars/SUVs in India. The success of the Creta will see other top-carmakers bringing in new SUVs in the hope to reduce Creta's dominance. Until now Hyundai Creta has not seen any real rival, We saw Renault Captur coming in but did not take off as the Creta did. The Compact SUV space has seen every car-maker growing similar to the sub-4-meter space. Hyundai Creta, Mahindra XUV500 and the Jeep Compass have seen its sales going up month-on-month.
The next two years will be a game changer in the compact SUV segment. We will see many new SUVs being launched in India, many new car brands entering India and this segment which in many ways was created by Hyundai Creta will be a go-to segment for automakers. This segment is also profitable with more and more Indians now opting for SUVs.
Upcoming SUVs in India to challenge Hyundai Creta:
1. Tata Harrier:
Launch date: January 2019
Showcased at the Auto Expo 2018 as the Tata H5X concept and later christened as the Tata Harrier SUV, this will be a game changer in the Indian SUV market. Tata Harrier is based on the new OMEGA architecture (ΩARC) which is a first Land Rover platform to be used in Tata vehicles. Harrier SUV is also the first to get Tata Motors' new IMPACT 2.0 design language and will be rolled out of company's plant in Pune. The new platform on the Tata Harrier will get auxiliary isolation panels that will see lower NVH levels and engine noise inside the Harrier cabin and the body of the Harrier is constructed using high-strength steel which will enhance safety and stability of Harrier. Tata Motors has confirmed the launch of Harrier SUV in early 2019 and will be an arch-rival to the Hyundai Creta.
2. KIA SP-Concept - Kia Trazor:
Launch date: Second half of 2019
Hyundai's sister brand Kia Motors has spurn in $1.1 billion in its new manufacturing plant in Andhra Pradesh and the KIA SP-Concept which is likely to be called as Kia Trazor will be the first production vehicle SUV to be sold in India. The new Kia SUV will challenge the Hyundai Creta and will make its market debut in the second half of 2019. This new KIA SUV will be a 5-seater vehicle and will also be based on a new platform that is likely to support electrification as well. Kia Trazor SUV will be available in both petrol and diesel engine options with an option of both manual and automatic transmission. KIA Motors has already begun its marketing activities in India with a huge focus on digital medium and social media presence.
3. Skoda Compact SUV:
Launch date: July 2020
Skoda's new India 2.0 project will see Volkswagen owned company investing Rs 7,900 crore in rolling out new SUVs and has confimed the launch of a new compact SUV in 2020. Skoda will make a new MQB A0 plant form specifically for the Indian market and will invest heavily at its plant to roll out new products. Skoda Auto India has also confirmed that it will increase the localisation contents on its new upcoming cars and SUVs and aims to have a 5% market combined market share (VW and Skoda) in the next 7 years. The new MQB A0 mid-size SUV will debut in India during the second half of 2020. Skoda and Volkswagen will launch 11 new cars and SUVs in India by 2025 and will also work of bringing in EVs.
4. Honda HR-V:
Launch date: Not specified
Honda HR-V SUV is meant for the Indian market. It's compact size and apt proportions and trust for Honda brand make it very suitable for the Indian market. However, Honda Cars India has not confirmed its India launch in India but we expect the company to be aggressive in India to gain its lost market share it will come up with new compact SUV. With the launch of 201 Honda Amaze on an all-new platform, it is also possible for the company to build a compact-SUV first to rival the likes of Ford Ecosport but sooner or later with BS-VI norms coming in we expect Honda HR-V global brand making its India debut by 2020.
5. New Volkswagen SUV:
Launch Date: October/November 2020:
Volkswagen's MQB platform has been a successful one for the company and platform/engine sharing has made it easy for the Volkswagen Group to up its profitability. The MQB A0 platform will see Volkswagen launching a new compact SUV in India. While Skoda is in charge to lead the operations of the development of this new SUV, Volkswagen will have its own design and batch and will launch the new SUV months after Skoda launches its own. Both Skoda and Volkswagen have aggressive plans in India going forward.
Soon all these SUVs will surface on Creta's turf and with every new launch, we expect this segment to grow further. Not to mention in the next two years we will also see the all-new version of Hyundai Creta rolling in. With BS-VI norms kicking in in 2020, Hyundai is also working on bringing in the all-new generation of Creta SUV which might see it still winning the throne in the Game of SUVs.