Automotive

Small SUV Season: The Best Compact SUVs To Buy This Year

The mSUV or compact-SUV segment has seen immense growth in recent years. A lot more Indian buyers are now in the market for SUVs and the m-SUV segment offers SUV-like features for a fraction of the price. The increasing interest has led to more competition in the segment with automotive manufacturers providing class-leading features and safety in their compact SUV offerings. While the market is now saturated with compelling offerings, let us draw a clearer picture for you with what’s in store right now, as well as upcoming compact SUVs in India this year that may be the next best vehicle you need to watch out for. In the market for a new compact SUV? Let us help you in deciding which compact SUV is best right now or if you should hold off on getting that compelling SUV you want for an upcoming SUV in India and the Indian market. So looking forward to an eventful year, these are some of the best compact SUVs in India in 2022 worth buying, as well as some upcoming SUVs in India that you should probably hold out for in 2022.

Kia Carens
Kia kicked the year 2022 off with the launch of its Carens, a six and seven-seater multi-purpose SUV/MPV. The vehicle is an MPV rather than an SUV but it definitely has SUV elements to it. This is Kia’s fourth offering in India, and one of its claim-to-fame is its segment-largest 2780mm wheelbase.

The Kia Carens features an MPV design and modern looks on the outside. It features all the modern-day bells and whistles, such as machined alloy wheels, LED headlights, DRLs and fog lamps. On the inside, the Carens is loaded to the brim with features such as ambient lighting with 64 colour options, a 10.25-inch infotainment screen complete with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, wireless charging with cooling, passenger air purifier controls, and passenger and third-row air vents, to name a few.

The Kia Carens is powered by a 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol unit, a 1.5-litre diesel and a 1.4-litre turbo petrol unit. Power figures for each are – 112PS and 144Nm for the 1.5-litre NA, 112PS and 250Nm for the 1.5-litre diesel, and a 136PS and 242Nm power and torque figure in the 1.4-litre turbo petrol. While the 1.5-litre NA is paired to a six-speed manual transmission, the 1.5-litre diesel gets that along with a torque converter automatic option, and the 1.4-litre turbo petrol gets a seven-speed DCT gearbox exclusively. The Kia Carens price starts at ₹8.99 lakhs (Ex-Showroom).

Tata Nexon
The Tata Nexon has been one of the most popular compact SUVs in the market and a successful offering from Tata Motor’s stable. It is one of the safest offerings in this segment. The Nexon gets packed with features as well, such as the exterior which features DRL integrated headlights, chrome bits, fog lights, an electric sunroof and more. Inside the Nexon features a three-spoke steering and also receives a touchscreen infotainment system. The car also gets features such as cruise control and Tata’s iRA connected car tech. The Tata Nexon’s engine specifications include a 1.2-litre turbo petrol and a 1.5-litre diesel engine. The turbo petrol unit puts down more power at 120PS and 170Nm of torque. While the 1.5-litre diesel engine puts down 110PS of power and 260Nm of torque. Transmission options include a 6-speed manual and a 6-speed AMT gearbox. The Tata Nexon is priced starting at ₹7.39 lakhs (Ex-Showroom) and is one of the most popular and safest compact SUVs in the segment.

Hyundai Venue
The Hyundai Venue was the brand’s debut in the sub-four metre compact SUV segment in 2019 and quickly gained popularity. While the Venue faces stiff competition in the segment, it quickly gained a cult following due to its large SUV looks. The Hyundai Venue’s exterior benefits from features such as a split headlight design where the projector headlights are assisted by separately mounted DRLs. The compact SUV also gets projector fog lights, LED taillights and alloy wheels among other features.

Inside the Hyundai Venue, it also benefits from an electric sunroof, an infotainment screen compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

The Venue also features height adjustability for the seats and Hyundai BlueLink connectivity among other features.
Engine specifications of the Hyundai Venue include three units. The Venue gets a 1.2-litre naturally aspirated petrol unit putting down 82PS and 114Nm of torque, paired with only a five-speed manual transmission. The Venue also gets a 1.5-litre diesel unit putting down 99PS and 240Nm of torque, and is paired to a six-speed manual transmission as well as a six-speed automatic gearbox. Finally, the Venue also gets a 1.0-litre TGDi turbo engine which puts down 118PS and 172Nm of torque. Transmission options for this unit include an iMT and a seven-speed DCT.

The Year of Compact SUVs
These compact SUVs are some of the most popular ones in the segment and only the beginning. With 2022 facelifts and more, competitors in this segment are slated to only improve. 2022 is so far a bright year for compact SUV buyers and manufacturers in India alike. For more information on compact SUVs in India, such as their on-road price in India and more, check out autoX’s price and new cars sections.

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