New car launches around the corner

16th Jul 2018 2:17 pm

Here's a look at some of the new cars that are being brought to the Indian market during FY 2018-19.

Seven months into 2018, both premium and mass market carmakers have been steadily launching new models, facelifts and variants of their offerings. Tata recently brought out a special edition for its Tigor called the Buzz, Toyota brought out a facelift for its Land Cruiser Prado, while Ford introduced a new top-spec trim on the EcoSport compact SUV, brought back the 125hp, 1.0-litre Ecoboost and launched the new Freestyle cross-hatch. Besides the EcoSport, compact SUVs from Maruti and Tata have also been updated with an AMT transmission.

The 2018 Auto Expo saw Maruti and Hyundai launch the third-gen Swift and a facelift for the i20, respectively. Later in the year, the Korean brand also brought out a CVT automatic for the petrol i20 and launched the facelift for its Creta. Premium manufacturers BMW and Mercedes introduced a slew of new models at the 2018 Auto Expo; the former brought out the 6-series GT and the X6 35i, along with the new M3M4 and M5, while the latter launched the Maybach-badged S 560 and S 650.

The festive season always sees its share of launches and 2018 is not expected to be an exception. There are quite new introductions to look forward to. Here’s a list of what you can expect to launch in India in the coming months.

In case you'd like to know which cars have already launched this year, check out our new cars and SUVs launched in 2018.

Maruti Suzuki Ciaz facelift (August 2018)

The Japanese brand is expected to bring the facelift for its mid-size sedan around June-July this year. Besides the cosmetic changes on the inside and out, the new model is expected to sport a new K15B petrol motor. Compared to the current 1.4-litre engine, the new 1.5-litre motor produces 12hp and 8.4Nm more, at 104hp and 138.4Nm of peak torque. This should help the Ciaz compete on a more even footing against the likes of the more powerful Toyota Yaris, Honda City and Hyundai Verna.
Also see:
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz facelift to get new 1.5-litre petrol

Lexus ES 300h (August 2018)

Just four months after its global unveiling, Lexus is gearing up to bring the new-gen ES 300h sedan to the market. The all-new rival to the likes of the Mercedes E-class and BMW 5-series gets plenty of design-based tweaks inside and out, comes with more equipment and gets the same hybrid engine setup as its predecessor, but in a higher 218hp state of tune (up by 16hp).
Also see:
2017 Lexus ES 300h video review
2017 Lexus ES 300h review, test drive

Datsun Go, Go+ facelifts (September 2018)

Datsun hopes that the upcoming facelifts for its Go hatchback and Go+ MPV do better than the current models on sale in India. They were officially unveiled earlier in May and get a revised styling pack for the exteriors, including the option of 14-inch alloy wheels for higher-spec variants. The cabin is where the highest number of changes can be seen, such as the new dashboard with a centrally mounted 6.75-inch touchscreen infotainment screen. While more features are expected to be on offer, the 1.2-litre petrol engine and five-speed manual gearbox combination will remain unchanged.
Also see:
Datsun Go, Go+ facelift image gallery

Mercedes-Benz C-class facelift (October 2018)

The C-class facelift may only seem to be slightly different in terms of exterior and interior design, but the engine range on it is all-new. While the brand has not confirmed which of its motors will be coming to India, the C 200 gets a new 184hp, 2.0-litre petrol engine, the C 300’s 2.0-litre petrol motor is rated at 258hp, the C 220d will share the E 220d’s 194hp, 2.0-litre diesel engine and the C 300d gets a twin-turbo version of the C 220d’s engine and makes 245hp. The AMG-badged C 43 has the same 3.0-litre twin-turbo V6, though it now makes 13hp more at 390hp. All the engines will be mated to a nine-speed automatic transmission, which replaces the older seven-speed unit previously offered on the non-AMG variants.
Also see:
2018 Mercedes-Benz C-class facelift review, test drive
2018 Mercedes-Benz C 300d image gallery
2018 Mercedes-AMG C 43 Coupe image gallery

New Honda CR-V (October 2018)

Honda brought the new CR-V to Auto Expo 2018; its USP – the seven-seat configuration. This third-gen model will replace the current one on sale; and unlike its predecessor, it is expected with a new 120hp, 1.6-litre diesel engine option. A new nine-speed automatic transmission will also be on offer for this SUV, which rivals the Mitsubishi Outlander, the Hyundai Tucson and the Jeep Compass.
Also see:
2018 Honda CR-V review, test drive
2018 Honda CR-V diesel video review
India-bound Honda CR-V likely to get 120hp diesel engine

Ford Figo, Aspire facelift

As part of its mid-cycle refresh, Ford will bring its updated Figo hatchback and Aspire compact sedan with some cosmetic changes – both outside and inside. Both models will share the new 96hp, 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol engine from Ford’s new Dragon series of petrol motors with the recently launched Freestyle cross-hatch. The new engine will replace the current 1.2-litre, four-cylinder Sigma petrol mill. The inside kit and design will be shared with the Freestyle, including a new 6.5-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Ford Sync 3 and six airbags for the top-spec trims. Both models are expected to launch in the coming months.
Also read: 
Four new Fords to launch in the coming months
2018 Ford Figo facelift (Ka+) image gallery
Ford not keen on launching AMTs in India

New Maruti Suzuki Ertiga

Spied recently, the new Ertiga is longer and slightly wider than the outgoing model. Its longer rear overhang should mean more space in the third row. Up front, this second-generation model also gets a more upright stance, with a high-set nose and front bumper. Wheels are expected to go up to a size of 16 inches. Maruti is likely to offer the new 104hp, 1.5-litre petrol and a 1.3-litre diesel at launch, with a 1.5-litre diesel engine – currently under development in-house – replacing Fiat’s 1.3-litre diesel engine at a later date.
Also see:
2018 Suzuki Ertiga vs rivals: Specifications comparison
New Suzuki Ertiga: 5 things to know

Mahindra MPV (U321)

After being spotted testing frequently all over the country, Mahindra’s all-new three-row MPV will finally go on sale in the first few months of 2018. The company’s MPV will be powered by a new 130hp, 1.6-litre mHawk diesel engine. We expect pricing in the Rs 10-15 lakh range – such that it slots in between the Maruti Ertiga on one side and the Innova Crysta on the other.
Also see: 
Mahindra S201 SUV: What we know so far

New Hyundai Santro

Spied testing in India a number of times, the new tall-boy hatchback from Hyundai is likely to re-use the Santro nameplate. Codenamed AH2, the new hatchback will replace the now-aging Eon and slot below the Grand i10 in Hyundai’s India line-up. The new model is expected to be powered by an updated version of Hyundai’s 1,086cc, four-cylinder Epsilon petrol engine. The hatchback is also expected to Hyundai’s first AMT-equipped model.
Also see:
Hyundai may bring back Santro name with all-new budget hatchback
Hyundai AH2 hatchback: What to expect

New Mahindra Rexton (XUV700)

The all-new Rexton from Mahindra is built on a new body-on-frame chassis, making it better-looking and lighter than the vehicle it will replace. It now features projector headlamps with LED DRLs, a slim hexagonal grille, LED fog and cornering lamps and 20-inch alloy wheels. The interior will get a large 9.2-inch high-definition touchscreen, soft-touch plastics and quilted Nappa leather upholstery. The seven-seat SUV will be powered by a 2.2-litre diesel engine mated to an automatic gearbox with all-wheel drive. While the new SUV is sure to be badged as a Mahindra rather than a SsangYong, whether it is likely to be called something other than the Rexton will be known once it launches in India.
Also see: 2017 SsangYong Rexton image gallery

Jeep Compass Trailhawk (end-2018)

Bookings have opened for the new top-spec trim of Jeep’s Mahindra XUV500 rival – the Trail Rated Compass Trailhawk. However, the launch of the Compass Trailhawk has been delayed and is now expected to arrive late this year, or early in 2019. Already manufactured at FCA’s plant in Ranjangaon, the model is currently exported to Australia and Japan. The off-road-spec SUV gets 4WD technology from Jeep’s selection. Although the big news is that a diesel-automatic variant will be on offer for the first time. The 170hp, 2.0-litre diesel motor will be mated to a nine-speed automatic, rather than the six-speed manual offered on the current top-spec trim, the Limited (O) 4x4.
Also see: 
2018 Jeep Compass Trailhawk video review
2018 Jeep Compass Trailhawk review, test drive
Jeep Compass Trailhawk image gallery

Tata Tiago, Tigor JTP

The sporty versions of Tiago and Tigor made their debut at the 2018 Auto Expo and have been spied testing in the country, as well. Having been developed with Coimbatore’s Jayem Auto, both the hatchback and the compact sedan sport the JTP badge. Both models are expected to be powered by an updated version of the 1.2-litre, three-cylinder, turbo-petrol engine that powers the Nexon compact SUV. Expect lowered springs and larger 15-inch alloy wheels, along with visual modifications to differentiate between the standard and sport versions.
Also see:
Tata Tigor JTP, Tiago JTP first look video
2018 Tata Tigor JTP image gallery

Tata Tiago, Tigor EVs

The all-electric versions of the Tiago hatchback and Tigor compact sedan were on display at the 2018 Auto Expo. While there isn’t much to differentiate them from their internal combustion counterparts, besides the badging, the EVs are powered by a three-phase AC induction motor with a peak output of 30kW at 4,500rpm (about 40hp). While there was no mention of charging times, range or fast charging features. Expect a price tag north of Rs 10 lakh.

Tata Harrier

Tata’s all-new five-seat SUV is expected to launch in January, next year. It’ll look as desirable as the H5X concept and be powered by an FCA-sourced 2.0-litre diesel engine. This diesel motor is shared with one of its rivals, the Jeep Compass, although it makes 140hp in the Tata SUV, as compared to the 173hp it makes on the Compass. There’ll be a seven-seat version of the SUV that will arrive at a later date and under a different name. The Harrier’s Omega platform is based on Jaguar Land Rover’s L550 platform which underpins the Discovery Sport – this is expected to provide the SUV with its off-road credentials. Expect the carmaker to maintain its penchant for attractive pricing and a high-level of equipment on higher-spec trims, so as to make it attractive against alternatives such as the Hyundai Creta, Renault Captur and the Jeep Compass.
Also see:
H5X SUV officially named Tata Harrier
Tata H5X SUV spotted undergoing high-altitude testing
Tata H5X could get hybrid powertrain
Tata H5X interior video from the Auto Expo 2018
Tata H5X SUV first look video

Nissan Leaf

The world’s best-selling EV will arrive in India towards the end of the year as a CBU unit. While the Japanese brand does not expect it to sell in great numbers, the Leaf is likely to be projected as a technology demonstrator for Nissan. The second-gen model, which is coming to our market, is powered by a 40kWh battery (up 10kWh from the previous-gen vehicle) and makes 140hp (up 40.4hp from the current 30kW battery range-topper). The claimed range for the Leaf is 400km (up by 280km) under the Japanese driving cycle and 380km (up by 129km) under the New European Driving Cycle.
Also see:
2018 Nissan Leaf review, test drive
Nissan unveils an electric Leaf Open Car roadster
2018 Euro NCAP: five stars for Nissan Leaf
Nissan Leaf SUV expected to breakthrough to the mainstream

Next-gen Mitsubishi Pajero Sport 

Despite the recent facelift, the current Pajero has begun showing its age against its modern rivals. An all-new model, which will feature a more sophisticated and bolder design, is expected to launch sometime later this year. This rugged seven-seater is larger than its predecessor and has more interior space. Cabin design has been thoroughly modernised and equipment is expected to be on par for this price. Its power will come from a 181hp, 2.4-litre diesel engine paired with an eight-speed automatic gearbox. There will be an all-new switchable four-wheel-drive system with a low-range transfer case for more hardcore off-road requirements.

Nissan Kicks

The Kicks is Nissan’s Creta-rivalling SUV and, mechanically, shares quite a lot with the Terrano (and hence, the Renault Duster and Captur). Though the Kicks looks more stylish than the Terrano, it is expected to be powered by the same 106hp, 1.6-litre petrol and 110hp, 1.5-litre diesel engines. Top-spec trims are expected to feature a 360-degree camera, side curtain airbags, and traction control.
Also see: 
India-bound Nissan Kicks: 5 things to know
Nissan Kicks India launch pushed to early 2019


The X2 will be BMW’s sixth SUV. It shares the UKL platform with the X1 and is designed to be sportier than the smaller crossover, standing 49mm shorter and 69mm lower. For India, expect the X1’s 190hp, 2.0-litre petrol that drives the front wheels, the 190hp, 2.0-litre diesel that sends power to all four-wheels, and the current range-topping 231hp, 2.0-litre diesel motor with four-wheel-drive to be on offer. The X2 will lock horns with the likes of the Range Rover Evoque.
Also see:
India-bound BMW X2 unveiled
2018 BMW X2 image gallery

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