Here are India's most fuel efficient petrol midsize SUVs

    Despite shifting preferences from diesel to petrol, fuel efficiency is still among the top priorities for buyers.

    Published On Jul 30, 2023 09:00:00 AM


    Most fuel efficient petrol SUVs

    SUVs continue to be the rage in our market wherein midsize SUVs are one of the most sought after, and also one of the most competitive segments of all. But unlike a few years ago, when diesels were the mainstays in SUVs, the market has now majorly shifted towards petrol. In fact, just two of all models in the midsize SUV segment now get a diesel engine. Fuel efficiency, however, continues to be a top priority for the value-conscious Indian car buyer. With so many models with different petrol powertrains on offer, what do you choose if you are looking for a fuel-efficient petrol midsize SUV?

    Here, we have compiled a list of the most fuel-efficient petrol midsize SUVs in India, rated from lowest to highest. Do note that the list is based on ARAI figures, with real-world numbers expected to vary depending on driving conditions and styles. As most SUVs are offered with multiple engine options, we have considered each engine separately for this list. However, where an individual engine has both manual and auto gearbox options, we have taken an average of the two transmissions' fuel economy figures.

    10. Honda Elevate – 16.11kpl

    Although prices are yet to be officially announced, Honda recently revealed the official fuel economy figures for the upcoming Elevate SUV. It’s the newest in the segment and has the least average claimed fuel efficiency of 16.11kpl. The Elevate comes with a 121hp, 1.5-litre, naturally aspirated petrol engine that's offered with either a 6-speed manual or a CVT gearbox. However, do note that these figures have not been certified by ARAI yet.

    9. Skoda Kushaq 1.0 TSI – 16.83kpl

    The 115hp, 1.0-litre three-cylinder turbo-petrol engine is the entry-level engine on the Kushaq, but there’s nothing entry-level about its performance. And yet, it offers a respectable average ARAI fuel economy of 16.83kpl. This engine is offered with either a 6-speed manual or a torque converter automatic gearbox, and it also gets idle start/stop function, which further aids fuel economy.

    8. Hyundai Creta 1.5 – 16.85kpl

    The sole petrol engine on the Creta currently is the 115hp, 1.5 litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine, mated to either a 6-speed manual or a CVT automatic gearbox. The 1.4-litre turbo-petrol is no longer on offer and the new 1.5-litre turbo-petrol hasn’t made it on the Creta yet. Offered with either a 6-speed manual or a CVT automatic transmission, the Creta 1.5 petrol offers an average ARAI fuel economy of 16.85kpl.

    7. Kia Seltos 1.5 – 17.35kpl

    The Seltos range also starts with the 115hp, 1.5-litre naturally aspirated four-cylinder engine, paired with the same gearbox options as the Creta. Interestingly, the efficiency of the 1.5 petrol engine has gone up with the facelifted model – it used to return 16.65kpl on the pre-facelift model, which means it's now 0.7kpl more efficient. This powertrain is also marginally more efficient here in the Seltos than in the Creta.  

    6. Kia Seltos 1.5 turbo – 17.8kpl

    The 160hp, 1.5-litre turbo-petrol unit is a new engine that arrived with the mid-lifecycle facelift on the Seltos. Offered with either a 6-speed iMT or a 7-speed DCT, it's currently the most powerful engine in its class and is also more efficient than the 1.4-litre turbo-petrol unit it replaced, with the average fuel economy being 1.5kpl more than before. It’s also marginally more efficient than the 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine on the Seltos.

    5. Skoda Kushaq 1.5 TSI – 17.83kpl

    Taking the next spot is the more powerful engine option available with the Kushaq – the 150hp, 1.5-litre, four-cylinder turbo-petrol motor that’s offered with either a 6-speed manual or a 7-speed DCT gearbox. The Kushaq 1.5 TSI returns an impressive average ARAI figure of 17.83kpl, thanks to the idle start/stop functionality and cylinder deactivation technology that shuts down two cylinders under light engine loads.  

    4. Volkswagen Taigun 1.5 TSI – 18.18kpl

    A cousin to the Skoda Kushaq, the Taigun is also powered by the same 150hp, 1.5-litre, four-cylinder, turbo-petrol motor and gets the same transmission options – 6-speed manual and 7-speed DCT. However, at 18.18kpl, the Volkswagen’s average ARAI fuel economy number is marginally higher than the Skoda. The Taigun also gets idle start/stop and cylinder deactivation technology, the latter being unique to just the Kushaq and Taigun in this segment.

    3. Volkswagen Taigun 1.0 TSI – 18.23kpl

    Just like the Kushaq, the Taigun’s entry-level engine is also the 115hp, 1.0-litre three-cylinder engine, offered with the same 6-speed manual and automatic gearboxes, and this too gets idle start/stop tech. However, the Taigun has a considerably higher average ARAI fuel efficiency of 18.23kpl with the same powertrain – 1.4kpl more than the Kushaq.

    2. Maruti Grand Vitara/Toyota Hyryder 1.5 petrol– 21.12kpl

    The 103hp, 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine with Maruti’s smart hybrid technology is shared between the Grand Vitara and Urban Cruiser Hyryder, and both manufacturers claim an average ARAI fuel economy of 21.12kpl. It’s offered with either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed automatic gearbox, and with the former, you even get an optional all-wheel drive system on the top-spec trim.

    1. Maruti Grand Vitara/Toyota Hyryder 1.5 strong-hybrid – 27.97kpl

    The top spot, unsurprisingly, goes to the strong-hybrid pair of the Grand Vitara and Hyryder with a claimed ARAI fuel efficiency of 27.97kpl. Both SUVs use a 1.5-litre, four-cylinder, Atkinson cycle petrol engine paired with an electric motor, and comes mated to an e-CVT gearbox. With sufficient charge and with light throttle inputs or in low speed bumper to bumper traffic, you can even run in pure EV mode, thus enabling such outstanding fuel economy.  

    Which of the Top 10 most fuel-efficient midsize SUVs would you go for? Let us know in the comments.

    Also See:

    10 most affordable SUVs with panoramic sunroof

    CNG strategies decoded: Maruti, Hyundai, Tata, Toyota

    5 most affordable off-roaders on sale in India

    Here are India's most fuel efficient diesel SUVs

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    Shashidhar Patil - 318 days ago

    Grand vitara and hyrider hybrid are with 3 cylinders. Correct me if I am wrong

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