Looks like the sub-4 metre mini SUV segment is going to get a bit crowded come 2016, with launched by Suzuki, Hyundai and now Fiat to give the lonely Ford EcoSport some company. The compact SUV reportedly condenamed X3U is in it’s final stage of design and development and should make an appearance at the 2016 India Auto Expo. Also, apparently the Avventura is Fiat’s medium of entering the SUV market and establishing itself in preparation for the launch of the new Fiat Compact SUV.
The Fiat compact SUV should be available early 2016 within a price range of Rs. 6-10 lakh. It will face intense competition from the likes of the upcoming Hyundai iX25, Suzuki’s small SUV and the already established Ford EcoSport.
The baby SUV is expected to be good looking, as is the case with most Fiats, with reports suggesting an aggressive styling package, class leading ride and handling. The Fiat compact SUV will also feature an all new engine being developed by Fiat based on the 1.6 litre JTD motor that does duty on other Fiats and Alfa Romeos. It is expected be a 1.5-litre rescaled version of the existing engine to avail excise benefits of around Rs. 15,000 per car. Power is expected to be well over a 100 BHP and an AMT gearbox might also be on offer at a later stage.
Fiat is definitely trying to turn things around in India with the launch of new products after struggling for quite some time now with limited models, a unsuccessful JV with Tata and dwindling sales. However, by the time the Fiat Compact SUV is finally launched in India the Hyundai iX25 would have already been launched in 2015 and the Suzuki XA Alpha compact SUV will most likely be out as well. Let’s hope Fiat doesn’t fall behind the competition again.