DT India car of the year: Best Premium SUVS
The best of the best
Welcome to the most luxurious segment in the world of cars. These machines are all about doing 180 mph cocooned in comfort with enough space to carry a family 4 with massive labrador in the third row.
Considering the total number of performance SUVs is longer than my monthly shopping list, the rationale behind choosing the top 4 cars of this segment is it has to be priced over INR 80 lakhs (US $115,000) and have 550+ raging but civilised ponies under the hood.
With that in mind, the nominations for the ultimate family show-toys on Indian roads are:
Land Rover Range Rover Sport
Outside India, people wander through forests and valleys in their Range Rovers because of its industry defining off-road capabilities. In India, however, all you need to experience off-roading is to try and get from A to B in any city on any road. Range Rovers in India, off-roading 24x7.
Priced at INR 2.05CR (~ US $350,000) the Land Rover Range Rover Sport SVR has a 5.0L V8 producing 570 HP and 700Nm of torque.
Pros: Hardcore off-roading capabilities , refined road manners , powerful and torquey engine.
Cons: Third row seating is cramped, Is brought into the country via CBU route hence comes at a hefty price tag , Uncertain reliability .
You will absolutely love the Mercedes G63 AMG if you are a fan of modernised retro design. The G-class is all about driving through a battlefield with bullets rekoshaying off the window while you enjoy some classy music holding a glass of champagne.
The AMG 63 G-class is priced at INR 2.19 Crores (~ US $310,000) and comes with a 4.0L V8 biturbo producing 585 HP and 850 Nm of torque.
Pros: Excelling off-roading capabilities, superb build quality, distinctive styling.
Cons: Very expensive to buy and maintain, small cabin for its size.
If you want a SUV where the S stands for "supercar" you really only have one option. From the vintage hood design to the slant over the rear wheels, the Urus is unfathomably Lamborghini. This Italian company has hit the bull's eye with their first ever SUV. It is fast, luxurious and you can use it every single day.
The Urus is priced at INR 3 Crores (~ USD $421,000) and comes with a 4.0L V8 producing 650 HP and 850 Nm of torque.
Pros: Amazing build quality, ferocious with its performance, irresistible looks .
Cons: Can be jerky at low speed, 23 inch rims are impractical for Indian roads.
If you have ever wondered what it's like to live in Birmingham Palace and you have a bit of money lying around, the Bentley Bentayga is your ultimate choice. Bentley's first ever SUV takes the luxurious lifestyle to a whole new level. With features like a noiseless cabin, posh leather massaging seats, metal door handles this car defines the luxury travel segment.
This sailing palace is available for INR 4.05 Crore (~ USD $620,000) which will get you a 6.0L W12 producing 605 HP and 900 Nm of torque.
Pros: Luxurious cabin, impressive chassis , massively quick for its size.
Cons: Looks aren't very appealing, lengthy and expensive options list.