The latest Auto Expo show in New Delhi uncovered some of the finest products that the auto sector shall offer to the Indian audience. While the previous few years have shown promising sales in the compact SUV sector, the entry-level hatchbacks have also left the customers scratching their head while making decisions.
If you are buying your first ever four-wheeler comfort vehicle and are looking for the options under Rs. 3 lakhs, we bring you some of the finest options.
Here are the best cars under 3 lakhs in India that have been launched in 2015 or are expected to enter the auto market in 2016.
Have a look and decide for yourself.
#6. Renault Kwid
Placed well within your price range, Kwid is the new star of this price segment. Appearing like a compact SUV, this can indeed be the first ever car of your life and that too, in style. With the 800cc petrol model, this hatchback looks classy and is packed with extraordinary design cues. This one is claimed to be the cheapest production automobile in the world.
Renault Kwid seeks inspiration from various SUVs of the Renault family and also a few crossovers. Not only is its exterior appearance rich, but the interiors have been crafted with modernity and dexterity in mind. One can get optional touchscreen infotainment, digital speedo and smartly designed cabin at a price range that is well within your budget.
- Price: Renault Kwid is available at an ex showroom price (New Delhi) of Rs. 2.57 to Rs. 3.53 lakhs only.
- What’s Hot, What’s Not: Super soft suspension, great design, 25.17 kmpl mileage and comfortable ride quality makes it a good buy at such a price. However, its strongest competitor is Maruti Alto 800 and Hyundai Eon, which might give it a backseat. This is so because people still go by the brand name of Maruti Alto 800.
Conclusion: Renault Kwid is believed to be a product from the kin of Datsun Redi-GO. It is said to be an altogether “exciting package” at such a price bracket. Cheap, smart and economical is what defines Kwid. In terms of comfort and driving on the Indian roads full of potholes, Kwid will win your heart, for sure. Kwid creates an impact on your psyche, where other cars of the same league fail. This car doesn’t seem to unsettle at all, which is why, we would definitely give it a thumbs up!
#5. Tata Nano
The first-ever Rs. 1 Lakh car of India has no longer remained that cheap! With a 600cc petrol engine, the Nano has been given the first-ever revival by Tata. Its updated interiors, revised styling and opening tailgate have added some life to the dying supermini’s sale.
You get integrated stereo system, decent NVH levels, better feel of clutch pedal, and larger steering wheel with Tata Nano now.
What’s new is the 5-speed AMT that is optional. With a mileage of 23.6 kpl, we believe that Tata Nano looks and feel exactly what you are paying for.
- Price: This cute little bug is available at a price of Rs. 2 lakhs to Rs. 2.93 lakhs only.
- What’s Hot, What’s Not: Pleasing design, silver centre console and comfortable interior are the hot features. What upsets people is still the hoarse sound that it makes on the outside and the firm suspension. Tata Nano also has Maruti Alto 800 and Hyundai Eon as its competitors in the Indian market. We believe that Tata could have worked a bit more on the Nano brakes.
Conclusion: We believe that Tata Nano’s facelift has given it a new avatar in the form of an updated version. It is expected that the struggling sales will bounce back with this revival. Said to be the “common man’s car,” Tata Nano fits easily in the budget of a lower middle class man as well. Unlike Alto 800, one need not bend his or her head to enter the car, thanks to the better head room. Being a smaller car, this one has very effective AC that remains functional not just for the front-seaters, but also for the ones in the rear. One may surely opt for Nano as his first ever four-wheeler car.
#4. Tata Zica
Expected to launch this year, Zica has made much news because of its camouflaged testing on the roads. This is believed to be a crucial car for the Tata Company; simply because it will infuse a bracing change in the line-up. Zica shall be available in both petrol as well as diesel engine, with 1.2 litre petrol, 1.05 litre diesel specs, respectively. With a very competitive spirit, Zica is expected to be standing taller than others in its league. As far as the competition is concerned, Tata Zica will compete with its counterparts in the Hyundai and Maruti Suzuki family.
- Price: Zica shall be available at a price range from Rs. 3 lakhs to Rs. 4 lakhs, depending upon the variant you are choosing.
- What’s Hot, What’s Not: The powerful 83 bhp and 114 Nm torque in the petrol variant and 140Nm torque in the diesel variant makes Zica a hot buy for sure. What Zica misses out on is the 67bhp output, which is indeed lower than the competitors. However, the comic proportions of Zica will balance out this deformity as well.
Conclusion: Whether or not you like Zica, one thing is for sure- this one looks like a completely refreshing and contemporary entry hatchback in the auto sector. One seldom gets to see a refurbished line-up like this. In the highly crowded segment, Zica seems to stand out from the rest, which makes it a good buy.
#3. Datsun Go
The next on our list of best cars under 3 lakhs in India is Datsun Go. If you wish to go for a hatchback that looks and feels bigger than others in the segment, this one is a car to choose. It is not just big, but also smart. When we talk about styling, Datsun Go can be called more pretty than flashy. So, we would say, the company played safe here. The simple design looks pleasing and easy; but at the same time makes you feel like there is “something missing” out there. The beige interiors and the plastic material give the cabin room a spacious appearance.
The car is decently comfortable on Indian roads and in the rear; Datsun Go gives enough room to accommodate three people. Accessory package is made available to the ones who wish to spec up their car.
- Price: Datsun Go is available at a price of Rs. 3.23 lakhs to Rs. 4.04 lakhs.
- What’s Hot, What’s Not: The Simple design can be considered both a pro as well as a con. While the minimalist design looks easy on your eyes, it also gives a feeling of something amiss in the cabin. The interior looks spacious and the best part is the leg room. 1.2-litre petrol engine is powerful and 5-speed manual transmission gives you sufficient control of the vehicle. At a mileage of 20.63 KMPL, Datsun Go is a car that suits the Indian roads. Even though the standard equipment is limited, the add-on accessories do not cost much either.
Conclusion: We would say that this is a quite confident entry into the hatchback segment and Datsun Go makes high-speed travelling absolutely comfortable. A good buy, on the whole.
#2. Hyundai Eon
One of the best cars under 3 lakhs in India is Hyundai Eon, which is a good looking cute car. In fact, this looks like one of the few cars that feature the importance of designing. Due to its premium designing, Eon looks more classy and richer than other cars of this size in the same segment.
The interiors too, seem to mimic the exteriors, as far as styling is concerned. Stylish dashboard and dual-toned interiors make it look expensive than it actually is. The AC works pretty well and more or less, Eon is a car absolutely ideal for the city drive. For people with a calm driving style, Eon is a perfect city companion.
The music player in the car comes with USB, AUX and CD connectivity. The storage options are more than expected and the car is available with a 0.8-litre petrol engine, which gives you a mileage of 21.1 KMPL. If you however, wish to switch to LPG, the mileage comes down to 15.5 KMPL.
- Price: If you take your budget up by just a notch, you can get Hyundai Eon at a price range of Rs. 3.11 lakhs to Rs. 4.24 lakhs.
- What’s Hot, What’s Not: Eon is a well-proportioned car that looks more luxurious than others in its segment. The only area where we thought that the budget really shows is the quality of interior materials. The problems of this car seem to be much like Alto 800. The good aspect is that Eon hardly crashes through the potholes of Indian roads. For the calm and composed drivers who love to ride their car within the city, there isn’t a better option than Eon.
Conclusion: Go for it if you are looking for a vehicle that manoeuvres well in the city. The pliant suspension gives you a comfy ride on the bumpy roads as well. Easy-going driving style and premium looking designing will make it a good buy for the new buyers.
When we are talking about the best cars under Rs. 3 lakhs in India, how can Alto 800 not make it to our list? Even though there isn’t much to talk about when it comes to the designing part, but once you enter inside this newly refurbished Maruti Suzuki Alto 800, you’d definitely feel that Maruti has given you a step up treatment with this car.
The high end variants of this car are now fitted with silver inserts, which gives it a better feel. Even though you might feel like you are driving a “budget hatchback,” this car has continued to strive.
When it comes to economical and comfortable hatchback, this one is still thriving in terms of sales. With a 0.8-litre petrol engine, Alto 800 gives a mileage of 22.74 KMPL on petrol and 30.36 KMPKg on CNG.
- Price: Bring this home at a price range of Rs. 2.53 lakhs to Rs. 3.69 lakhs.
- What’s Hot, What’s Not: Alto 800 looks fussy, but it isn’t that bad as well. The company has given you the choice of interiors, viz. brown and black. However, we found brown better suited and aligned with the interior. Interior of the car seems to be put together pretty fine. The exterior designing doesn’t seem to impress anyone though. As far as the space is concerned, you’ll find it hard to fit in five people at once. This is a good car for a family of four nevertheless.
Conclusion: Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 is easy and pleasant to drive. Shifting gear feels smooth, which makes it comfortable. The 796cc engine is the new one and this is making all the difference to the car. Modulation has suddenly become easier. Overall, Alto 800 is a decent buy if you wish to start with something economical, easy and comfortable. Forget the designing part of the exterior, and Alto 800 can merrily be your first car.
You would love to read :- 5 Best Cars under 4 Lakhs in India for The Discerning Buyer
If you wish to buy a car almost immediately, go for any of the above options. However, 2016 seems to be a promising year for the cars under 3 lakhs.
Wait until mid-year, and you can get a lot more options. Look for the latest designed compact hatchbacks and even sedans in the price range that fits your pocket.
This is an era of compact SUVs, and we might also get to see a few cars that look classy, bossy and premium in the 3 lakhs budget or just a notch up.
Let us know if you have more to add to our list of best cars under 3 lakhs in India.