The year 2018 will be full of exciting launches in the car industry. We narrow down on 10 cars that we feel are worth waiting for.
All-new Maruti Suzuki Swift
It has been an year since the latest generation Suzuki Swift was revealed globally. However, its Indian launch was delayed due to Maruti prioritising the new Dzire’s launch instead. However, Swift fans do not have to wait much longer for the new iteration of the car, as it is being launched at the 2018 Auto Expo.
The New Swift is based on Suzuki’s new ‘Heartect’ modular platform, which also underpins the Dzire, Baleno and Ignis. As usual, the new Swift will share a lot of its components with the Dzire - however, up front the car gets a sportier F-Type esque grill. Expect the current generation of petrol and diesel motors to be carried over on the new car.
Mahindra’s upcoming Innova rival will probably be the most polished Mahindra as yet. It is expected to feature high levels of fit and finish and a contemporary cabin design as well. It is also expected to feature ample space for 7/8 passengers.
Powering the U321 (codename) will be a familiar 2.2-litre mHawk diesel engine from the XUV. Also on cards is a new 1.6-litre diesel engine and a petrol automatic. The Mahindra U321 will most likely sit on a ladder frame chassis, just like the Innova. Expect the pricing to be very competitive.
Mahindra TUV300 long wheelbase
While Mahindra is putting its heart and soul into its new Innova rival, it is also preparing a replacement for the aging Xylo at the same time, which will be the long wheelbase version of its TUV300. Rumoured to be called the TUV300 Plus, the upcoming car will be longer than 4 meters in length to accommodate a third row of seats. The car will slot below the U321.
Globally revealed around four years back, the BMW i3 has taken its own sweet time to arrive in India. However, it is now confirmed that the car will be launched at the 2018 Auto Expo.
The i3/i3s coming to India is the refreshed version of the EV, which has been globally launched only recently. The electric motor on the i3 is a 94Ah unit that generates an equivalent of 170bhp along with 250Nm. The i3s pushes the power figure to 184bhp, while the torque goes up by 20Nm. Both i3 and i3s are capable of travelling a company claimed 180km on a full charge. A range extender is also available - which comes with a 2-cylinder petrol engine extending that range to 330km.
All-new Audi A6
2018 will see the Audi A6 enter its next generation. The luxury saloon is expected to be globally revealed early next year, and launch in India by the year-end. Mechanically, the new A6 will borrow a lot of design and tech inspiration from the recently revealed A7 sportback, which is also India bound in 2018.
The A6 is an important car for Audi in India, as its core rivals - Mercedes-Benz E-Class, BMW 5 Series and Volvo S90 - sell in pretty decent numbers here. The new age technology expected to debut on the all-new model will surely shake the luxury saloon segment up.
All-new Mitsubishi Pajero Sport
The latest Mitsubishi Pajero Sport is a radically styled SUV, which globally debuted in late 2015. The big, brawny Mitsubishi is expected to arrive in India in 2018 and will directly lock horns with the Toyota Fortuner and Ford Endeavour.
The Pajero Sport is new from the ground up, and alongside a stunning new design inside and out, it will also come with new powertrain - a 2.4-litre MIVEC2 turbo diesel engine, which is mated to a new 8-speed automatic transmission developed specially for the all-new SUV. It also uses a further-evolved version of the Super-Select 4WD-II four-wheel drive system.
All-new Mitsubishi Outlander
If your memory serves you right, you might remember that Mitsubishi once sold the previous generation Outlander in India. Now, the crossover is set to make a comeback in India in its latest iteration.
Mitsubishi’s official Indian website already mentions the Outlander, along with a ‘coming soon’ tag. The website also reveals a few key specifications of the India spec car which will have a CVT gearbox with a six-step sports mode - which can be operated through steering mounted paddle shifters. While there is no mention of the engine specifications, the company claims that the outlander can sprint from 0-100km/h in 11.1 seconds. Also revealed by Mitsubishi India is the 4WD system which will be offered - an electronically controlled system combined with an active stability control.
Hyundai i20 facelift
The second generation Hyundai i20 has been a strong seller right from the day it was launched back 2014. Now, the premium hatchback is around three and a half years old, and Hyundai is expected to reveal the facelifted model at the 2018 Auto Expo. The updated model will feature cosmetic tweaks, most prominent one being the implementation of Hyundai’s new ‘cascading’ grille up front.
Volvo has jumped into the baby luxury SUV segment with its new XC40. The Swedish company anticipates that sales of this segment will surpass one million globally by 2020, and believes that XC40 is a step in the right direction to tap into this market.
Expected to arrive in India in the second half of 2018, the XC40 looks a mini XC90/XC60, and is underpinned by Geely’s new modular CMA platform. The XC40’s clean, clutter-free cabin houses a large tablet inspired infotainment screen that is now a standard affair on all the new Volvos. Also, a 12.3-inch configurable driver display is offered on all variants - thus bidding adieu to the traditional analogue instrument cluster. In India will V40 will go against the likes of the Audi Q3, BMW X1 and Mercedes-Benz GLA.
Ford Figo facelift
Ford will give its Figo a midlife refresh, which will include updated exteriors and improved interiors. Also on cards is the availability of Ford’s new 1.5-litre Dragon petrol engine mated to a new torque converter 6-speed gearbox - which debuted on the EcoSport facelift. It is very likely that these updates will extend to the Figo Aspire compact sedan as well.