The competition for the buyer of compact SUVs is hotting up in the Indian market and how. Even as bookings for the Kia Sonet opened at midnight of August 20, Toyota Kirloskar Motor has announced opening of bookings for its compact SUV, the new Toyota Urban Cruiser, from August 22. Buyers can booking the compact SUV by paying Rs 11,000 both online at www.toyotabharat.com) as well as at Toyota dealerships across the country.
Noticeably different from the car it’s based on, Toyota has done a much better job of giving the Vitara Brezza-based Urban Cruiser SUV its own identity than it did with the Baleno-based Glanza, which looks nearly identical to its Maruti Suzuki counterpart, the Baleno. Toyota has tried to make the Urban Cruiser look more like a rugged SUV, which is evident at the front, especially in the instantly recognisable twin-slat grille with its angular chrome frame, that mimics the Fortuner.
Toyota is offering the Urban Cruiser SUV with the same 105hp,1.5-litre K15 naturally aspirated petrol engine as the Maruti Vitara Brezza as the only engine option. There will be no diesel engine option, just as on the Brezza. As far as gearbox choices go, a five-speed manual will be standard and there will be a four-speed torque-converter automatic available as well.
Where the Urban Cruiser will differ is that it will get mild-hybrid tech – including fuel-saving engine stop-start – with both gearbox options, as opposed to the Brezza, which only gets SmartHybrid tech on the automatic. This should help the Urban Cruiser manual better the equivalent Vitara Brezza’s 17.03kpl ARAI-rated fuel economy figure. The Urban Cruiser automatic, on the other hand, is expected to have the same 18.76kpl figure as the Brezza auto.
Key interior highlights include dual-tone dark brown premium cabin ambience, an ergonomically laid out wide and spacious cabin, smart entry with engine push start/stop button and auto ac. The Toyota Urban Cruiser also gets high-end features such as Smart Playcast touchscreen audio with Android Auto/Apple Carplay and smartphone-based navigation, rain sensing wipers, cruise control and electrochromic inside rearview mirror (IRVM), all combining to provide an exhilarating ride and great comfort.
While Maruti offers a 2-year/40,000km standard warranty for the Vitara Brezza, Toyota is offering a 3-year/1,00,000km warranty as standard on its compact SUV, which should give it an edge for buyers looking for lower ownership costs, as it did for the Glanza versus the Baleno.
The Urban Cruiser launch will is slated for September, and it will go up against quite a few established rivals, including the Vitara Brezza itself. There’s the Tata Nexon, Mahindra XUV300, Hyundai Venue and the Ford Ecosport, but another key rival will be the new Kia Sonet and will go on sale around the same time as the Toyota Urban Cruiser. Additionally, Renault will bring its compact SUV, the Kiger sometime in October followed by Nissan with the Magnite, early next year.
According to Naveen Soni, Senior Vice-President, Sales and Services, TKM, “We are very excited about our latest offering- the Urban Cruiser, as it has already started receiving a lot of attention and enquiries from interested customers.
The Toyota Urban Cruiser will offer everything that the young customers look for and also extend to them the joy of owning a Toyota brand with a host of value added services with superior sales and service experience. We are confident that the Toyota Urban Cruiser will create a niche for itself and we are eagerly awaiting to welcome a new set of customers who dream to own a Toyota SUV early in life and experience our sales and aftersales services of global standards.”