The existing Toyota Innova will be retained and given a crossover treatment like the Etios Cross, positioned below the new generation Innova also set for launch in 2016.
While most manufacturers in India rely on hatchbacks to gain volumes, Toyota’s best-selling model has been the Innova that just does not refuse to buoy down in terms of volumes. Despite new competition coming in, sales of the very capable MPV have seen very little difference, even though, the rivals are much more competitively priced. With such a brilliant product under its umbrella, the Japanese giant is in no mood to let the outgoing generation model rest in peace and will introduce an Innova Cross variant next year that will be sold alongside the new generation Innova.
Recent reports suggest that Toyota is working on a rugged version called ‘Innova Cross’ that is being developed on the lines of the Etios Cross with additional body cladding, roof rails, and certain extra titbits. The new model will be based on the outgoing Innova’s platform and will be positioned more as a Honda Mobilio, Maruti Ertiga rival with a competitive pricing. The Innova Cross will employ the same 2.5-litre D4-D diesel engine under the hood, paired to a 5-speed manual gearbox.
The strategy is certainly interesting as Toyota tries to kill two birds with one stone. On one hand, the outgoing Innova will be eating into the market share of its new rivals; while the new generation Innova will cater to a new customer base and certainly will be a pricier proposition. This also negates the possibility of the Avanza MPV (smaller than the Innova) coming to India anytime soon. We might also see the Innova Cross further skimmed down on features to price the model more effectively.
A fantastic product appreciated by cab operators pan India, the versatility of the Toyota Innova with a pliant ride quality is the reason why the MPV is so popular. More details are expected to unravel close to the 2016 Auto Expo, where the Japanese auto giant is expected to showcase the new generation Fortuner and Innova models.
Source – MotorOctane.com