Comparo: Rexton vs Duster vs Safari Storme - Best of the Beasts
The Indian utility vehicle market witnessed a number of exciting new launches in the 2012 calendar year. Evidently, the most promising and successful models introduced last year is Renault Duster compact Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV), Tata Safari Storme SUV and Mahindra SsangYong Rexton premium SUV.
The Renault Duster was a surprise hit in the Indian auto market last year and helped the French auto major in shaking the foundations of other prominent utility vehicle players, such as Mahindra and Tata Motors. The incredible demand and success for the aggressively priced Duster model among domestic audience, led Mahindra to accelerate its plans of introducing its own Quanto compact SUV in the country.
Coming to its under-the-hood specifications of Renault Duster, its petrol variant comes fitted with a 1,598 cc, 1.6 litre, DOHC motor that produces a peak power output of 100.5 bhp at 5850 rpm along with a maximum torque delivery of 145 Nm at 3750 rpm. The diesel model of Duster incorporates the critically acclaimed 1.5 litre, SOHC Renault K9K dCi powertrain, which belt out peak power outputs of 84 bhp and 108.5 bhp. The Renault Duster earned rave reviews for its impressive power and torque ratings, along with impressive fuel efficiency. The Duster is offered to Indian consumers between a price tag close to Rs. 7.7 lakhs and Rs. 12 lakhs.
Tata Motors, the country's largest automobile manufacturer, introduced its Safari Storme premium SUV, in order to challenge the dominance of Mahindra XUV500 in Indian utility vehicle market. The 2012 Tata Safari Storme comes fitted with a 2.2 litre VariCOR diesel motor, which churns out a maximum output power of 138 bhp and peak torque delivery of 320 Nm. The engine assembly of the Tata SUV is mated with a five speed manual transmission system. Further, the top-end model of Safari Storme SUV comes equipped with a 4x4 All Wheel Drive (AWD) option. So far, the Tata Safari Storme has been proclaimed a hit in the Indian passenger vehicle market and is giving some stiff competition to its direct rival Mahindra XUV500.
Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M) Limited, the country's leading utility vehicle manufacturer, launched its most expensive offering SsangYong Rexton premium SUV in the country last year. The stunning Rexton is offered to domestic audience within a price range of Rs. 17.7 to 19.7 lakhs, which is really competitive as compared to its segment rivals. At present, Mahindra SsangYong Rexton competes against the likes of Toyota Fortuner, Ford Endeavour, Mitsubishi Outlander, Pajero Sport and Hyundai Santa Fe amongst others in the premium SUV segment of Indian market.
M&M offers two variants of the Rexton premium SUV– RX5 and RX7 in the Indian utility vehicle market. The Rexton RX5 comes fitted with a 2.7 litre, 2,696 cc, RX270 XDi diesel powertrain under its hood, which pumps out a peak power and torque output equation of 162 bhp and 340 Nm, respectively. The top-end variant Rexton RX7 comes assimilated with the same but slightly tweaked version of 2.7 litre, 2696 cc, RX270 XVT diesel power-mill that belts out an astounding best-in-class power and torque outputs of 184 bhp and 402 Nm. The Rexton premium SUV also delivers impressive fuel efficiency ratings of 12.4 and 11.18 kmpl in its RX5 and RX7 models, respectively.