Nissan India’s Magnite compact SUV will be a fitting rival to the upcoming Kia Sonet
Nissan India has been relatively dormant on the market with just the BS6 Kicks compact crossover as its latest product. In fact, the Japanese automaker’s official Indian website lists only two products: Kicks BS6 and GT-R. Nissan India aims to better things with the introduction of an all-new subcompact crossover (‘compact SUV’ in Indian terms).
Dubbed the Nissan Magnite, it will take on popular names such as the Tata Nexon, Mahindra XUV300, Hyundai Venue, Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza and of course, the upcoming Kia Sonet. Toyota Kirloskar Motor will join the pack soon with its Urban Cruiser (rebadged Vitara Brezza). Nissan India is quite late to meet the market’s growing interest in well-rounded ‘urban SUVs’ (or basically raised-hatchbacks) that spans under four metres in length. Still, the Nissan Magnite follows the brand’s ‘Make in India, Make for the World’ philosophy.
The latest ‘#NissanNext A to Z’ teaser shows a glimpse of 12 new Nissan products that will hit global markets in the near future. Yet, the much-awaited Nissan 400Z sportscar (successor to the rather outdated 370Z) remains the highlight. It wears the new ‘Z’ logo.
Certain sources state that the Magnite will be based on Nissan-Renault’s CMF-A+ platform which also underpins the upcoming Renault HBC. This makes perfect sense since Nissan and Renault have had near-identical products in the past such as the Terrano and Duster, and the newer, Kicks and Captur as well as Datsun redi-GO and Renault Kwid.
The exterior design is in line with some iconic products in Nissan’s global portfolio, such as the Patrol (or Armada), Pathfinder, Qashqai and of course, the Kicks. Since it was teased globally, one can expect the sub-four-metre crossover to hit several emerging markets. Its Indian counterpart could be considerably different in terms of engine choices and equipment.
It is too early to make any conclusion on specifications. Rumours suggest that it will come powered by a BS6 1.0-litre three-cylinder HR10 turbo petrol motor that makes around 95bhp and 150Nm of torque. A 5-speed manual transmission would come as standard while a CVT variant could be introduced alongside or at a later stage.
Previous reports told that Nissan India was aiming for a launch timeline in August (just ahead of the festive season). However, the ongoing COVID-19 crisis may have affected its plans. Meanwhile, Nissan India has introduced an online sales platform.