Bajaj Auto to unveil small passenger car RE60

In the last edition of Auto Expo, it was world's cheapest car Nano from Tata Motors that hogged the limelight; and this time global and Indian carmakers are all set to roll out many surprises when the most anticipated auto show begins on January 5.

From entry-level cars to super-premium hatchbacks, luxury sedans and concept cars, being showcased by Indian players such as Maruti Suzuki and Tata Motors and their foreign counterparts like Ford, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, the show will have it all.

While competition is intensifying in the entry-level and premium-hatchback volume segments, foreign players are also vying for the fastest-growing luxury car and compact sports utility vehicle (SUV) segments. But the seven-day Auto Expo 2012 will create an all-new super-premium hatchback segment as German carmakers BMW and Mercedes-Benz are gearing to unveil Mini and B-Class respectively, while Audi will launch compact SUV Q3. Similarly, Maruti Suzuki will unveil its all-new multi-utility vehicle (MUV) Ertiga, and Ford its compact SUV Ecosport.

Two interesting products to be unveiled this year would be Bajaj Auto's small passenger car RE60, thus marking the bike-maker's entry into the car business, besides the Reva electric car in a new avatar after the Bangalore-based manufacturer was bought by Mahindra and Mahindra. M&M will also showcase products of its Korean subsidiary Ssangyong for the first time in India since its acquisition a year ago.

Future products

Interestingly, other players would be showcasing their future products as far as electric or hybrid versions of their cars are concerned. Taking the lead would be General Motors with Beat's electric version, and Maruti Suzuki showcasing the hybrid versions of its popular hatchback Swift. On the other hand, Tata Motors is likely to give first glimpse of Nano's diesel variant besides showcasing the electric version of the Rs.1 lakh wonder that the company plans to launch in Europe.

Hyundai would showcase its MUV HND-7 and three-door utility coupe Veloster besides launching upgraded version of premium sedan Elantra, while Italian carmaker Fiat is also trying to regain the lost ground through new Linea and Punto and announcing its plans to open its own network of showrooms and service stations. Similarly, French auto-maker Renault will launch new hatchback Pulse and SUV Duster.

Two-wheeler's role

Stakes are also high in the two-wheeler segment where companies such as Hero MotoCorp, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI), Yamaha, TVS and Bajaj are gearing up to showcase their new products, while manufacturers of superbikes like Harley-Davidson, Triumph Motorcycles and India's very own Royal Enfield will roll out their new and upgraded products.

However, the most-awaited event in the bike category would be the entry of HMSI into the 100 cc segment after its parting of ways with the Hero Group.

Keywords: Auto Expo 2012

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