Both Indian carmakers, Tata and Mahindra are all set to launch their HBX (codename) 5-seater and XUV700 7-seater SUV respectively by October 2021. The XUV700 will replace the existing XUV500. According to reports, the production version will debut in July which will be followed by its launch. Tata had showcased the HBX concept back at the 2020 Auto Expo. The new 5-seater will share some bits from this concept and will sit below the Nexon in its lineup. Tata has not revealed the name yet, but it is called HBX internally. 

Tata HBX Sub-Compact SUV

Unlike Tiago and Tigor, the HBX will be based on Tata’s modular ALFA platform that underpins the Altroz. It is rumoured that the SUV will be named Timero. Spy shots show that the cabin will be shared with last year’s concept. The basic layout of the dashboard, square air-con vents and the free-standing touchscreen are identical. It will feature Tata’s latest steering wheel and part digital instrument cluster.  

Features could include a multi-function 3-spoke flat-bottom steering wheel, Harman audio system, parking sensors, ambient lighting, black fabric seats, multiple airbags, cornering stability control, ABS with EBD and more. We still don’t have the exterior details but the design could be inspired by the Harrier. 

The mini SUV will be offered only in two petrol motor options. One is the 1.2L 3-cylinder naturally aspirated petrol engine which makes 86bhp. This is shared by Tiago, Tigor and Altroz. The other engine is the 1.2L turbocharged petrol making a max power of 100bhp. Transmission options include a 5-speed manual and a 5-speed AMT gearbox. The rivals for Tata Timero will be Maruti Suzuki Ignis, Mahindra KUV100 and the upcoming Hyundai’s AX1. 

Mahindra XUV700 

The next premium SUV from Mahindra will be the XUV700 and will be the brands first model to use to new monocoque chassis. The XUV700 rendered model gives us an idea of the design elements used in the car. It has a huge grille with 6 vertical slats and a C shaped LED DRL around the headlight. It also features a new bumper with a wider air intake and pronounced hood. To enhance the side profile the car features machine-cut alloys with plastic cladding, sloping roofline and blacked out ORVM’s. 

The car has been added with features such as level 2 Autonomous Driver Assist System (ADAS), Mercedes Benz inspired dual-screen layout for the infotainment system and instrument cluster, connected car tech, an electronic parking brake, a panoramic sunroof, automatic AC unit, lane-keeping assist, adaptive cruise control, hill hold and more. 

The XUV700 will be offered in both petrol and diesel engine. It uses the 2.2L 4-cylinder mHawk diesel engine which makes a peak power of 185bhp. The petrol engine is the 2.0L mStallion turbo-petrol motor which produces a power of 190bhp. This makes it the powerful petrol SUV in the segment. Some reports suggest that the SUV could also feature a mild hybrid powertrain for some variants. Customers can choose either a 6-speed manual transmission or a 6-speed torque converter automatic transmission. The Mahindra XUV700 will lock horns with the Tata Safari, MG Hector Plus, the upcoming Hyundai Alcazar. It is too early to know the prices, however, it is expected to start from Rs. 15 lakh ex-showroom. 

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