Traditionally, one of the country's premier vehicle manufacturers Mahindra & Mahindra has made utility vehicles (UVs) that run only on diesel engines, such as Scorpio, Bolero and XUV500. In the present scenario, the compact Sports Utility Vehicle (SUV) segment has vehicles that run on both diesel and petrol powertrains. While Ford EcoSport would have 1 diesel variant and 2 petrol variants in India, the Renault Duster has just the opposite line-up of engines (2 diesel, 1 petrol).
In the EcoSport, one of the petrol engines is 1499 cc, while the other is 999 cc in displacement. Similarly, the diesel engine in this compact SUV has an engine displacement of 1498 cc. It seems that Ford India is more keen on giving the buyer a sense of refinement through its vehicles, which possibly explains the reasons behind 2 petrol engines and 1 diesel engine. In the Renault Duster, two power variants of the 1461 cc engine are available in the market namely 84 bhp and 109 bhp. The petrol version of this vehicle, with a 1598 cc engine, develops a power output of 103 bhp. Similar to the above two, Premier Rio, another compact SUV, also comes in two engine options. One of these is a 1489 cc diesel engine with 63.5 bhp of power, while the other is a 1173 cc engine with 75.5 bhp of power. However, the Mahindra Quanto compact SUV is available with one 1493 cc engine, developing a power of 101 bhp.
The Ford EcoSport comes with several unique features, one of them being automatic transmission in a vehicle of this segment, for the first time. This gearbox will be mated to the 1.5 litre petrol engine in the EcoSport. Apart from this, a power output of 120 bhp from the 1.0 litre EcoBoost petrol engine is the maximum in this segment of vehicles. Renault Duster comes closest to this, with one of its diesel variants producing 109 bhp of power.
Offering a variety of engines in the compact SUV segment is a sign of maturity in the Indian automobile industry. It was 2012 when it was realised that this segment had the potential to record high sales and by now, manufacturers are already thinking how to broaden their product portfolio. With high fuel efficiency and better power in the petrol versions, Indian customers will have ample reasons to purchase the same.