1. Tata H5X
Tata wowed the crowds with its H5X which looked simply stunning. Combining futuristic and muscular looks, the H5X might be a concept, but according to Tata, the production version will look quite similar which should make it one of the best looking SUVs on Indian roads. The other important bit about the H5X is that it is based on Land Rover's L550 platform and the car will be available in the 5 and 7 seater formats. The production version of the H5X should be out by 2019 and by the looks of it, it will be worth the wait.
2. Maruti Suzuki Concept Future S
Another SUV concept, but this time from Maruti was the Concept Future S. Now Maruti has just claimed it to be the next design language but we think there’s more than meets the eye. Dimensionally the concept is under 4 meters to take advantage of the tax benefits. Also the Future S is extremely similar in dimensions to the new Swift, so it could get the same underpinnings thereby spawning a new compact SUV that will sit under the Brezza. Prices should be around Ignis territory and we think this will be a non-Nexa product. Powering the compact SUV will be the 1.3 litre diesel and the 1.2 litre petrol that powers the Swift. Expect a production version of the Future S by this year-end or early 2019.
3. Kia SP Concept
Kia came in with its entire range of vehicles at the 2018 Auto Expo to tell us how serious they are about the Indian market. But what grabbed most attention was the SP SUV concept which will be Kia’s first product in India. Design-wise the SP is a looker and a half thanks to its muscular proportions and low roof. We think the SP will share its underpinnings with the Hyundai Creta and also be its main competitor. The SP is the first product designed especially for India and will go on sale from 2019 once the Kia plant in Andhra Pradesh gets rolling.
4. 2018 Honda CR-V
The Honda CR-V has been in India for quite some time now and after good sales initially, demand fell through mainly because of a lack of a diesel motor and to some extent because it wasn’t a 7-seater. At the 2018 Auto Expo Honda finally decided to make amends by bringing in the 2018 Honda CR-V. On the outside, the new CR-V looks a whole lot better and has the butch looks that define an SUV. It’s now wider and longer thanks to the increased wheelbase which has now made a third row of seats possible. Apart from being a 7-seater the CR-V will finally get a 1.6 litre diesel engine that should put out an impressive 160bhp. AWD is expected to be standard along with a 6-speed manual and 9-speed auto box. The 2.4 litre petrol engine will be retained as well. Expect the car to be launched in the fiscal year 2018-19.
5. Hyundai Kona
Hyundai showed off the Kona SUV at the 2018 Auto Expo. While an electric version of the Kona is already undergoing testing, we think Hyundai will get the Kona in with powertrains borrowed from the i20, after all the Kona is based on the i20 platform. Design wise, the Kona is sharp looker and even though it does not have the imposing size of a proper SUV, it’s pretty funky thanks to an interesting mix of light-catching lines and the slim LED daytime running lights positioned above the main headlights that really give the car a distinctive face.