The South Korean carmaker, Hyundai has confirmed the launch of the new micro SUV codenamed AX1. Hyundai is known to name their cars differently depending on the market, but we believe the micro SUV will be named Casper for the Korean market. The micro SUV will set foot in the home country, South Korea, and make its way to India and other international markets.
With the micro SUV car segment in the spotlight with the likes of Renault Kiger, Nissan Magnite and the upcoming Tata HBX, Hyundai is urging to get the new micro SUV as early as next year in India. The Casper SUV will be placed below the top-selling Compact SUV Venue in the current Hyundai portfolio.
What powers the Micro SUV?
The Casper Micro SUV will most likely share the engine with Grand i10 Nios. A 4-cylinder 1.2L naturally aspirated petrol engine churning out 83 horses and 114Nm of peak torque. This comes mated to a 5-speed manual transmission or an AMT transmission.
The Casper could feature a 3-cylinder 1.1L petrol engine for the lower trims that are used in the Santro. This move is to cut the costs down and price the car aggressively. There are reports suggesting that the carmaker plans on introducing the 1.0L turbocharged petrol engine seen in the Venue.
Dimensional details of the Hyundai Casper
The Casper SUV will sit behind the Venue as the smallest Hyundai SUV car model, but the car is based on the brand’s K1 platform. The K1 platform was developed by Hyundai in 2017 for the entry subcompact models (A-segment). This platform underpins the ongoing Santro and Grand i10 Nios.
The dimensions of the Casper micro SUV is expected to be 3,595mm in length, 1,595mm in width and 1,575mm in height. The Micro SUV sharing the same platform as the Santro hatchback is smaller lengthwise and a bit narrower, but taller by 15mm.
Design and styling
From all the spy shots we can see a number of exterior details and the simple boxy design used for the SUV. The front fascia boasts a split, round headlight and DRL setup placed below the eyebrow like LED turn indicators. It gets a small air dam on the bottom of the bumper and a huge grille in the middle.
The quirky design is carried over to the rear, it gets rounded tail lamps placed on the bumper, a high mounted stoplight, grey roof rails shark fin antenna. It gets a unique pillar mounted rear door handle which is seen only on a few cars in the market.
Expected launch time and rivals of the Casper SUV
Some reports suggest that the trial production of the Micro SUV Casper has already begun and the company will commence the production full-fledged in September 2021. The Hyundai Casper will make its global debut later this year. After South Korea the next possible market to get the SUV in India. There is also an electric version of the SUV planned for the future, which will come out in 2023/24 probably. When launched the Hyundai Casper will go against the Tata HBX, Mahindra KUV100, Renault Kiger, Nissan Magnite and Maruti Suzuki Ignis.