With the all-new Verna now on sale, Hyundai now seems to have shifted focus on its next major launch for our market – the made-for-India Ai3 SUV that will sit below the Venue. While this SUV was seen earlier in South Korea, a fresh spy shot that has come to us today shows it on Indian soil for the first time, giving us more details on what to expect from this sub-Venue model from Hyundai.
- Hyundai Ai3 SUV will get a 1.2-litre petrol
- Will share underpinnings with the Grand i10 Nios
- Will go on sale by Diwali this year
Hyundai Ai3 SUV: what does the new spy shot show?
The Hyundai Ai3 SUV will likely be based on the K1 platform that underpins models like the Grand i10 Nios and even the Hyundai Casper sold abroad. In fact, the size and positioning will be quite similar to the Casper, but the India-spec Ai3 will be substantially differentiated in terms of styling. As we've reported earlier, it will be an “SUV equivalent” of the Nios, and will be the smallest Hyundai SUV on sale in our market. According to our sources, this model was given the go-ahead for production just before the COVID-19 pandemic outbreak.
The sub-Venue model from Hyundai for India seems to follow the brand’s latest design language for SUVs, featuring an upright look with slightly boxy proportions. From what is known, it will look quite different from the Casper and will have unique door design body panels as well.
The micro-SUV will get a split-headlamp set-up, with LED daytime running lamps at the top and a squarish, Venue-like headlamp below it. The daytime running lamps feature an 'H' pattern, which was also seen on test mules of the upcoming Santa Fe SUV. This could be Hyundai’s new signature LED DRL look that could be seen on future products from the brand.
Moving on to the sides, the front fenders and the front doors, including a very upright glass area, seem to give it a tall SUV look. The Hyundai Ai3 SUV is expected to get a unique and more angular design for its tail-lamps, unlike the rounded look on the Casper. The rear bumper, too, is likely to sport a different look.
The Ai3 is expected to be around 3.8 metres long, which will help it position decently under the Venue that's just a shade less than four metres long. When compared to direct rivals like the Punch and the C3, expect Hyundai to keep its contender ahead of the game with features like a sunroof, as seen in the spy pictures.
Hyundai Ai3 SUV platform, positioning, powertrain details
As mentioned above, this new micro SUV from Hyundai will use the same platform that underpins the recently updated Grand i10 Nios and the Aura compact sedan duo. The wheelbase is also expected to be similar if not the same with these two existing Hyundai models.
Hyundai will position the Ai3 in India between the Grand i10 and the Venue. This means the model will overlap some variants of the Grand i10 Nios as well as the Venue. As far as powertrain options are concerned, the Ai3 micro SUV is likely to share the same 1.2-litre petrol engine as the Venue, Grand i10 and Aura, but the decision on a CNG variant is yet to be taken. There will not be a diesel engine option on this SUV.
Hyundai Ai3 SUV launch details
Hyundai recently introduced updates to the Grand i10 Nios and the Aura; it also launched the all-new Verna and the updated iterations for the Alcazar. There are more updates lined up for the Hyundai range in India this year. As far as the launch of the Ai3 SUV goes, sources tell us that it will go on sale this festive season, most likely by September-October 2023. Production will start in India in the July-September quarter this year.
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