Apart from Tata Punch, the upcoming Hyundai micro SUV will lock horns with other micro UVs such as Mahindra KUV100 and Maruti Ignis
Hyundai has confirmed that it will be introducing a new subcompact UV in India which will rival the likes of Tata Punch. However, it will not be the Korean-spec Casper crossover hatch but a new model altogether. Internally codenamed Ai3, this micro UV is likely to be launched in 2023.
This development was confirmed by Tarun Garg, director of sales and marketing, Hyundai Motor India, in an interaction with PTI. Now, first spy shots of this micro SUV have been shared online by Youtube channel @acgoon – these new spy shots confirm that the India-spec micro SUV is quite different from the Hyundai Casper that is already launched in select markets.
2023 Hyundai Micro SUV – Tata Punch Rival
Tata Motors has hit a jackpot with the launch of Punch. With hardly any major rival out there, Tata Punch monthly sales are averaging at about 12k units. Hyundai wants to enter this segment and take on Tata Punch. Codenamed Ai3, this new Hyundai micro SUV will sit below Venue in the Korean automaker’s SUV lineup – making it their smallest UV in India.
2023 Hyundai Micro SUV test mule was spotted in South Korea. India testing is expected to start soon. New Hyundai Ai3 could be underpinned by a heavily localised K1 platform which underpinned the now discontinued Santro. Hyundai Santro was doing decent sales of about 2,500 units to 3,000 units a month. But was discontinued, most likely because Hyundai planned to replace it with this upcoming micro SUV.
From the spy shots, we can see that the India-spec Hyundai Micro SUV gets projector headlamps, LED DRLs in the front. Casper has a circular headlamp unit, while that of this new SUV is rectangular. Rear tail lights are also different. Rear passenger door handle is placed along the shoulder line, unlike Casper which has it on the C-pillar.
2023 Hyundai Micro SUV Dimensions
Speaking of Casper, the UV is dimensionally smaller than Santro and measures 3595 mm long, 1595 mm wide and 1575 mm tall. It offers a decent wheelbase of 2400mm but the cabin of the car is strictly designed for four occupants. It has been designed to comply with the Gyeoncha (light car) regulations in the South Korean market.
In comparison, the Tata Punch is 3827mm long, 1742 mm wide, 1615 mm tall and comes with a 2445 mm wheelbase. India-spec Hyundai micro SUV is likely to be of similar dimensions, that means it will be bigger than Casper.
2023 Hyundai Micro SUV Features
In terms of features, Hyundai offers a decent number of creature comforts onboard with Casper. These include LED headlamps and taillights, an 8-inch infotainment touchscreen unit, a digital instrument cluster, an electric sunroof and three drive modes. Safety is handled by seven airbags and driver-assistance systems. It is available in six exterior colour options and three interior themes.
Some of the features will be carried over from Casper. We can see the single pane sunroof on the Hyundai SUV, this will be a huge booster against Tata Punch. Top variants could be offered with 6 airbags and other important safety features.
2023 Hyundai Micro SUV Engine Specs
In Korea, Casper is powered by two engine options- a 1.0-litre naturally aspirated unit and a more powerful 1.0-litre turbo petrol unit. The former pushes out 75 bhp and 95 Nm of peak torque while the latter kicks out 99 bhp and 172 Nm of peak torque.
India-spec Hyundai micro SUV is likely to be powered by the same engine which is seen on Grand i10. This is a 1.2 liter petrol, 4 cyl unit delivering 81 bhp and 114 Nm. It could be offered with petrol as well as CNG option whereas transmission options could include manual and AMT.
Hyundai Updating SUV lineup
In 2021, Hyundai sold 1.25 lakh units of Creta SUV, while Venue also recorded a sales volume of over 1 lakh units last year. In 2022, the company revamped its SUV lineup with new launches. This includes new-gen Tucson and facelifted Venue. Next year, Hyundai is expected to update their SUV line-up once again with the launch facelift Creta, Creta CNG, Venue CNG as well as this new micro SUV.