Hyundai India has just launched the Grand i10, a car that is positioned between the i10 and the i20 hatchbacks. The South Korean car maker is already putting together a compact sedan based on the Grand i10. According to a report on HindustanTimes, the new Hyundai compact sedan will be launched in April 2014. This timeline also indicates that the compact sedan could make an appearance at the 2014 Indian Auto Expo, a big ticket event where many upcoming vehicles are showcased.
The Grand i10-based compact sedan will serve as a replacement to the Hyundai Accent sedan, a car that came in petrol, LPG and CNG variants and that was recently discontinued from the Indian market. The new compact sedan will sit below the Verna Fluidic, as Hyundai's entry level sedan offering in India. Both petrol and turbo diesel engine options are likely to be offered on the Grand i10-based Hyundai compact sedan.
It remains to be seen whether Hyundai persists with the 1.1 liter U2 CRDI, triple pot turbo diesel engine on the compact sedan version of the Grand i10. Since the Grand i10 does feature generous levels of equipment, expect a similar strategy for the Hyundai compact sedan as well. Also, twin airbags and ABS+EBD should be standard on the top-end variants of the car, given the competition that the Hyundai compact sedan will have to contend with.
Hatchbacks being engineered into sub-4 meter compact sedans is something that's becoming common place in the Indian car market. While the Tata Indigo eCS (a booted version of the Indica hatchback) kick started the sub-4 meter compact sedan trend in India, the likes of the Maruti Suzuki Dzire and the Honda Amaze have proven to be the big sales spinners for their respective brands in the compact sedan category. With the arrival of the Grand i10-based compact sedan, this trend will only get stronger.
Hyundai has also announced that it is developing a compact SUV that will take on the likes of the Ford EcoSport and the Renault Duster. In fact, test mules of the Hyundai compact SUV have already been spotted on Korean roads. A late 2014/early 2015 launch time frame for the compact SUV is likely. Hyundai is also developing an MPV that will rival the likes of the Honda Mobilio (Brio-based compact MPV) and the Maruti Suzuki Ertiga.