With the advent of new online players in the public transport and taxi segment, the Indian car manufacturers have started paying attention to the commercial car market too. All the mass market car buyers are also eyeing this category of vehicles in order to increase their annual volumes, owing to their popularity of taxi buyers.
Following is a list of best commercial cars in India across the various segments, depending on the size and seating configurations,available in the market today:-
Maruti Tour H2
The Maruti Tour H2 is based on an already existing Maruti passenger hatchback, the Celerio in this case. The Maruti Tour H2 is a bare-bones version of the Celerio with blacked out door handles and rear view mirrors and no wheel caps. However, power steering and front power windows as the only comfort oriented features.
Powering the Maruti Tour H2 hatchback is a 1.0-litre, three-cylinder, naturally aspirated petrol engine, which it retains from the Celerio itself. Available with only a 5-speed manual gearbox, the Tour H2’s engine makes 68 PS of power and 90 Nm of torque. The Maruti Tour H2 is available with two variants – petrol and CNG – the fuel efficiencies of which are 21.63 km/l and 30.47 km/kg, respectively.
The Datsun Go might not have been a great success in the private car segment, but the commercial car buyers do prefer it for its ease of driving, spacious cabin and the decent fuel efficiency it offers. Moreover, the new facelifted version does get an upgrade in terms of visual appeal and build quality.
The Datsun Go features a 1.2-litre, three cylinder, naturally-aspirated petrol engine, which makes 68 PS of power and 104 Nm of torque. The car is available with a premium CVT too, however, it is the standard 5-speed manual gearbox which is preferred by the commercial car buyers.
To cater to the commercial buyers as well apart from the country's middle-income families, the Hyundai Santro offers a slightly more premium appeal as compared to all the options mentioned above, without costing a huge premium over them. The lower variants of the Hyundai Santro are the preference of commercial car buyers for its ease of driving and low maintenance.
The Hyundai Santro has a tried and tested 1.1-litre four-cylinder naturally-aspirated petrol engine under its hood, which is available with two fuel options – petrol (69 PS/99 Nm) and CNG (60 PS/85 Nm). The car is available with a 5-speed manual gearbox as standard, with an optional 5-speed AMT with its petrol-powered version.
Maruti Tour S
With the Tour S, Maruti caters to those commercial car buyers who want a big sedan appeal in a compact package at an affordable price point. The Maruti Tour S is based on the second-generation Maruti Dzire, and is a spartan version of the popular compact passenger sendan with just front power windows and power steering available as comfort features.
The Maruti Tour S sources its power from a 1.2-litre, four-cylinder, naturally-aspirated petrol engine, which churns out 83 PS of power and 113 Nm of torque. Available with a 5-speed manual gearbox and two fuel options – petrol and CNG, the Tour S claims a fuel efficiency of 19.96 km/l for the petrol and 26.55 km/kg for the CNG variant.
Post the discontinuation of the Xcent Prime in favour of BS6-compliance, Hyundai has made the lower variants of the Aura petrol available for the commercial segment. The Hyundai Aura has arrived as a suitable replacement for the Xcent, owing to its better styling and more premium interior cabin.
The Hyundai Aura comes with a 1.2-litre, four-cylinder, naturally-aspirated petrol engine (83 PS/114 Nm), as well as a 1.2-litre, three cylinder diesel engine (75 PS/190 Nm), thus making it the one of the few compact cars in the commercial car segment to feature a diesel engine with BS6 credentials. The petrol engine is also available with a CNG fuel option.
The Ford Aspire has been widely accepted by the commercial car buyers for its tough build quality and a tractable diesel engine, which is not only more powerful than the rest, but also offers an impressive fuel efficiency figure.
The Ford Aspire is available with a 1.2-litre, three-cylinder, naturally-aspirated petrol engine (95 PS/120 Nm), however, it is the 1.5-litre four-cylinder diesel engine (100 PS/215 Nm) which is a more popular choice of the two. Both the engines are available with a 5-speed manual gearbox only.
Maruti Tour M
Post the discontinuation of the diesel variants of the Maruti Ertiga, Maruti Suzuki is banking heavily on the commercial variant of the MPV, the Maruti Tour M. The flagship offering from the Maruti’s commercial arm of vehicles, the Maruti Tour M is based on the Ertiga itself and is a dulled down version of it.
The Maruti Tour M shares its 1.5-litre, four-cylinder, naturally-aspirated petrol engine and 5-speed manual gearbox with the Maruti Ertiga. Available with both petrol and CNG fuel options, the engine makes 105 PS of power and 138 Nm of torque, and churns out fuel efficiencies of 18.04 km/l for the petrol and 26.08 km/kg for the CNG variant respectively.
The Mahindra Marazzo was launched as a more premium alternative over the Maruti Ertiga, the now-defunct Renault Lodgy as well as being the company's replacement for the ageing Mahindra Xylo. With an intent of filling in the void created by the last-generation Toyota Innova, the Mahindra Marazzo offers a premium and spacious cabin backed by a refined diesel engine and at a more affordable rate than its Japanese rival.
The Mahindra Marazzo is powered by a 1.5-litre four-cylinder diesel engine, which is coupled to a 6-speed manual gearbox and makes 123 PS of power and 300 Nm of torque. The Marazzo is yet to receive a BS6 upgrade, which is already in the works and will be launched soon.
Toyota Innova Crysta
Last but not the least, the Toyota Innova Crysta needs a special mention in this list, as it is the vehicle which revolutionized not only the MPV segment, but also the commercial car market as a whole. The Innova Crytsa has turned out to be a huge success despite its high price, courtesy of its reliable mechanicals and supremely comfortable cabin.
The Toyota Innova Crysta is available with a petrol engine too, but it is the 2.4-litre four-cylinder diesel engine which is the de-facto choice for commercial car buyers. Available with both 6-speed manual and 6-speed automatic gearbox options, the engine makes 150 PS of power and 343 Nm of torque.
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