The compact SUV’s in India segment is one of the most exciting place in Indian automobile market. With every major automaker wanting a slice of the cake, Indian car buyers have a sea of SUVs to choose from. While appearance, safety ratings, features, and creature comfort are some of the key points that Indian auto buyers look for, engine performance is the most important. We have listed the five best SUVs with the most powerful petrol engines in the group.
Ford introduced the concept of compact SUV’s in India, and launched the EcoSport in India in 2013. Although the EcoSport, despite being a naturally aspirated 1.5-litre three-cylinder engine, has the most powerful petrol engine in the group. It produces 121 bhp and 149 Nm of torque and can be had with a five-speed manual transmission and a six-speed automatic transmission. The lag-free engine spin characteristic of this engine outperforms many of the gasoline turbocharged competitors in this segment. ARAI’s fuel efficiency figures are also apt, with the manual version being 15.9 kmpl, and the automatic just under 14.7 kmpl.
The Tata Nexon ranks second in the list of compact SUV’s in India with a 1.2-litre, turbocharged Revotron three-cylinder engine that produces 118 bhp and a torque of 170 Nm. Although the difference in power numbers is marginal compared to the EcoSport, turbo lag is noticeable and lacks grunt at lower speeds. It might not be the most energetic, but it returns with a smooth, consistent power delivery over 2,500 rpm that won’t leave you in need of more. Available with a six-speed manual transmission and a six-speed AMT unit, Nexon features ARAI fuel efficiency of 17.4 kmpl.
Along with its Korean cousin, Hyundai Venue offers a wide variety of engine and gearbox options. The most powerful of these engines is the 1.0-litre GDI turbo petrol engine, which produces 118 horsepower and 172 Nm of torque. It’s polished, quiet and has decent firepower to keep things fun and with a choice between a six-speed manual transmission, a seven-speed DCT, and an iMT six-speed gearbox, it’s hard not to think of the Venue.
Sonet is the new kid on the block and embraces the same powertrain options as Venue. You can get a similar 1.0-litre turbo petrol engine that delivers 118 bhp / 172 Nm of torque with a DCT and 7-speed iMT unit, but miss out the old-school three-pedal manual transmission like in the Venue. Now, even though the numbers are close to the Nexon, the Sonet’s turbo offers a powerful mid-range that results in a perfect driving experience.
The Mahindra XUV300 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine is one of the least polished engines on the market. With power up to 109 bhp and 200 Nm of torque, it does everything required of it to be truly impeccable. Add that to the convenience of a six-speed manual transmission and a six-speed AMT gearbox, the XUV300 has a reasonable position.
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