Best SUV in India: 2012

SUVs have historically been mid-size passenger vehicles with a body-on-frame chassis similar to that found on light trucks. Most mid-size and full-size SUVs have three rows of seats with a cargo area directly behind the last row of seats. Bodies of SUVs have recently become more aerodynamic, but the sheer size and weight keeps their fuel economy poor.

However, the modern mid-size SUVs in India are quite more than that. Although priced much more than Sedans, they do offer good fuel economy, and have large seating capacity.

Following is the countdown to the best SUV in India for 2012:

#13. BMW x1 sDrive 18i

Priced at INR 25.54 lakhs, as per BMW standards, this car offers a fuel economy of 8.1 kmpl.

#12. Mahindra Scorpio VLX AT Airbag

Although much lesser priced than the BMW, at INR 13.28 lakhs, this car too lacks a good fuel economy.

#11. New Toyota Fortuner 4X2 AT

Quite high-priced for its fuel economy, this car is available in the Indian markets at about INR 25.72 lakhs.

#10. Tata Safari Storme LX

Much lesser priced at INR 12.96 lakhs, the all new Safari Storme can produce a fuel economy of 10.8 kmpl.

#9. Renault Duster Petrol RxE

Much lesser priced, at INR 8.53 lakhs, this car can be a decent buy with 10.5 kmpl of fuel economy.

#8. Mahindra Bolero DI BSIII

Launched only in Tier-2 cities so far, where the BSIII emission standards are still acceptable, this car stands at INR 6.44 lakhs. It produces a mileage of 9.4 kmpl, and has a fuel tank of 60 liters capacity. With a 5-Speed Manual gearbox, and Diesel as a fuel, this car hardly provides any safety features (no airbags). It can reach a top speed of only 117 kmph.

#7. Mahindra Thar DI 4X2

Another low-priced option from Mahindra, this Jeep stands at INR 5.30 lakhs only. It gives a nice mileage of 15 kmpl, and has a fuel tank of 45 liters capacity. The transmission and safety details are very similar to the Bolero. This jeep also has a 5-Speed Manual gearbox, ground clearance of 187mm, displacement 2523cc, and Torque of 183 Nm.

#6. Mahindra Quanto C2

The base model of Mahindra Quanto is priced at INR 7.04 lakhs, much to the Indian liking.

Other specifications are:

Mileage 13.8 kmpl Fuel Tank 55 liters
Gearbox 5-Speed Manual Fuel Diesel
Ground Clearance 180 mm Airbag None
Displacement 1493 cc Torque 240 Nm

#5. Tata New Safari DICOR 2.2 LX 4×2 BSIII

The emission standards for this car have been kept same as the Bolero, and priced at INR 9.37 lakhs.

Other specifications are:

Mileage 10.5 kmpl Fuel Tank 65 liters
Gearbox 5-Speed Manual Fuel Diesel
Ground Clearance 205 mm Airbag None
Displacement 2179 cc Torque 320 Nm

#4. Mahindra XUV 500 W6 2WD

This one is much better than the other low-priced models by Mahindra, and priced at INR 13.71 lakhs

Other specifications are:

Mileage 12 kmpl Fuel Tank 70 liters
Gearbox 6-Speed Manual Fuel Diesel
Ground Clearance 206 mm Airbag 6
Displacement 2179 cc Torque 330 Nm


#3. Force One SUV 4×2

A brand new entrant in the Indian market, Force cars have stormed in with the all-new One SUV.

Force One SUV 4×2. Photo Courtesy- wheelmela

The flagship base model of Force One SUV 4×2 is priced quite low, at INR 13.05 lakhs.

Other specifications are:

Mileage 14 kmpl Fuel Tank 75 liters
Gearbox 5-Speed Manual Fuel Diesel
Ground Clearance 205 mm Airbag 5
Displacement 2200 cc Torque 321 Nm
Tinted Glass Yes Integrated Antenna Yes
Turning Radius 6.0 m  


#2. Audi Q3 2.0 TDI Quattro base grade

No car countdown is complete without an Audi in there. This one is an excellent buy, provided you have very deep pockets. This car is priced at INR 36.47 lakhs in India. It has an extremely low fuel economy, but just a bit better than its high-priced counterparts.

Audi Q3 2.0 TDI Quattro – base. Photo Courtesy- autojunction

Following are some specifications:

Mileage 12 kmpl Fuel Tank 75 liters
Gearbox 7-Speed Auto Fuel Diesel
Ground Clearance 165 mm Airbag 8
Displacement 1968 cc Torque 380 Nm
Tinted Glass Yes Integrated Antenna Standard
Turning Radius 5.8 m  


#1. Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton RX7

Undoubtedly, this is the best value-for-money SUV currently present in the Indian auto industry.

Not quite low-priced, but does have the features which can go head-to-head and toe-to-toe with any deluxe SUV. Just like a typical SUV, it has a fuel economy of just 11 kmpl.

But, if you are planning for an extremely long drive, fill up your tank with the full 78 liters of fuel.

Mahindra Ssangyong Rexton RX7. Photo Courtesy-

Following are more specifications of this wonder:

Price INR 13.71 lakhs Turning Radius 5.7 m
Gearbox 5-Speed Auto Fuel Diesel
Ground Clearance 252 mm Airbag 6
Displacement 2696 cc Torque 402 Nm
Tinted Glass Standard Integrated Antenna Shark-Fin

Note: All prices mentioned in this article are On-Road Prices in Kolkata or Pune (India). Mileage is to be read as Mileage (City)


About theultimaterenaissance

I am an Engineer and a Management Graduate. I love writing poetry and research reports on cars. Surfing, listening to music, and Reading and writing Technical & Research papers are among my most savored hobbies.
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