9 Best SUVs Under 20 Lakhs To Buy In India In 2021

The premium SUVs are here.

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When it comes to buying a car, it doesn’t matter which segment you dive into; there are always a plethora of options to choose from. The same goes for if you are looking for the best SUVs under 20 lakhs in India.

Different people have different reasons for buying an SUV. Some want it because of their excellent off-roading ability, while others need extra space and comfort.

Whatever be the reason, it’s never easy choosing one when there is everlasting competition among the companies. Anyway, we did the job a bit easier for you by sorting out some of the finest SUVs under 20 lakhs in the market. Here they are:

Best SUVs Under 20 Lakhs (2021)

  1. Tata Harrier
  2. Mahindra XUV500
  3. Jeep Compass
  4. MG Hector
  5. Tata Safari
  6. MG Hector Plus
  7. Kia Seltos
  8. Hyundai Creta
  9. Mahindra Thar

1. Tata Harrier

Tata Harrier: best suvs under 20 lakhs
Image: Tata Motors
Tata HarrierSpecifications
PriceRs 14.39-21.09 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (On-road)Rs 17.36-25.26 lakh
Engine OptionsKryotech 2.0-liter Turbocharged Diesel Engine (Manual and Automatic Transmission)
Engine Specs167 BHP and 350 Nm of Torque
Fuel-Efficiency15-16 km/l (combined)
DrivetrainFront-Wheel Drive (FWD)
No. Of seats5 Seater SUV

Tata Harrier is the flagship SUV of Tata Motors. It’s built on OMEGA Architecture, which is derived from Land Rover’s legendary D8 Platform. It’s one of the best SUVs under 20 lakhs available in India. If you are a performance-oriented person, then Tata Harrier is the right choice for you as it has all the elements for providing excellent ride quality.

Tata Harrier offers features like a best-in-class panoramic sunroof, an 8.8″ island floating touchscreen infotainment system with 9-speaker JBL audio system, a premium interior, and much more.

In addition, there are multi-drive modes for different driving conditions like wet and rough roads. Since it’s Tata’s flagship car, we hope there’s no need to tell you guys about its safety features.

Cons

  • Available only with diesel engines/No petrol engine option.
  • Engine noise inside the cabin.

2. Mahindra XUV500

Mahindra XUV500 Best SUVs Under 20 lakhs
Image: Mahindra
Mahindra XUV500Specifications
PriceRs 14.22-20.07 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (On-road)Rs 17.27-24.16 lakh
Engine Options2.2-liter mHawk Diesel Engine (Manual and Automatic Transmission)
Engine Specs152.8 BHP and 360 Nm of Torque
Fuel Efficiency15 km/l (combined)
DrivetrainFront-Wheel Drive (FWD)
No. of Seats 7 Seater SUV

Among the full-size SUVs, Mahindra XUV500 has an unspoken dominance in the market. Mahindra built XUV500 in order to provide a superior sports utility vehicle experience for customers.

There’s ample space inside the cabin; both the first and second row have a good amount of legroom. Anyone, irrespective of their size, could fit easily without having legroom or headspace issues in either the co-driver seat or the middle row.

However, the last row is quite congested and is suitable for 3 kids or 2 adults with low body mass. Two healthy adults can also fit into the last row; however, they will have to compromise with comfort in that case.

In terms of performance, we believe you will feel that you are driving a real SUV. Though it might not be an all-wheel-drive (AWD) SUV, its powerful diesel engine allows it to climb easily through rough surfaces. Furthermore, the driver seat is quite high and provides great visibility.

Cons

  • Low legroom for adults in the third row
  • When it’s loaded with all seven passengers, there is little or no space for luggage. Hence you have to put luggage on the roof stand.
  • There are slight vibrations on the steering wheel when the car is in a stationary position. However, vibrations disappear as soon as the car starts moving.

3. Jeep Compass

Jeep Compass best SUVs under 20 lakhs
Image: Jeep
Jeep CompassSpecifications
PriceRs 17.19-28.49 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (On-road)Rs 19.93-33.82 lakh
Engine Options1.4-liter Multiair Turbo Petrol
2.0-liter Multijet II Turbo Diesel
Engine Specs1.4-liter Petrol- 160 BHP and 250 Nm of Torque (Manual and Automatic)
2.0-liter Diesel- 168 BHP and 350 Nm of Torque (Manual and Automatic)
Fuel-Efficiency14 km/k (Petrol)
17 km/h (Diesel)
DrivetrainBoth FWD and 4WD
No. Of Seats5 Seater SUV

Apart from being a five-seater SUV, there’s nothing to complain about this SUV. In fact, Jeep Compass is slightly out of the league car in its segment.

Jeep is one of the most reputed brands globally, and Compass truly lives up to that fame. It’s equipped with an Active Drive with Select Train feature that provides the user with four different driving modes (auto, mud, snow, and sand) for the best driving experience.

Apart from this, there are over 50 safety and security features that make it one of the safest SUVs in this segment. Some of the safety features include six airbags, Electronic Stability Control, Four-channel Anti-lock Brakes, full-function Traction Control, Panic Brake Assist, Hydraulic Boost Failure Compensation, Electronic Roll Mitigation, etc.

Jeep Compass offers a matchless driving experience, premium features, and paramount safety.

Cons

  • The service network is not extensive compared to the competitors.
  • Not a full-size SUV
  • 4WD variant is quite expensive
  • The second row is quite compact considering three passengers
  • No electric sunroof

4. MG Hector

MG Motor
Image: MG Motors
MG HectorSpecifications
Price Rs 13.49-19.20 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (on-road)Rs 15.53-22.49 lakh
Engine Options1.5-liter Turbo Petrol (Manual and Automatic Transmission)
1.5-liter Turbo Hybrid Petrol (Manual Transmission)
2.0-liter Diesel (Manual Transmission)
Engine Specs1.5-liter Turbo – 141 BHP and 250 Nm of Torque
1.5-liter Hybrid – 141 BHP and 250 Nm of Torque
2.0-liter Diesel – 167.6 BHP and 350 Nm of Torque
Fuel-Efficiency1.5-liter Turbo – 15.81 km/l
1.5-liter Hybrid – 15.81 km/l
2.0-liter Diesel – 17.40 km/l
DrivetrainFWD
No. Of Seats5 Seater SUV

MG Hector is one of the finest-looking SUVs on the market. It looks stylish and premium inside out and comes with lots of modern features. The automaker claims it’s the first internet-connected car in India and provides over 55 connected features. This SUV is quite long considering its rivals like Tata Harrier, Jeep Compass, and Kia Seltos.

The interior cabin is comfortable, luxurious, and provides ample space. Hector is also available with a low emission hybrid engine option as well. If we talk about the performance, both hybrid and non-hybrid variants have a turbocharger that contributes to providing amazing power delivery.

Cons

  • Few glitches in voice recognition feature
  • Infotainment system is a bit sluggish

5. Tata Safari

Tata Safari best SUV under 20 lakhs
Tata SafariSpecifications
PriceRs 14.99-22.01 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (On-road)Rs 17.78-26.05 lakh
Engine OptionsKryotech 2.0-liter Turbocharged Diesel BS6 Engine (Manual and AT Transmission)
Engine Specs167 BHP and 350 Nm of Torque
Fuel Efficiency14-16 km/l
DrivetrainFWD
No. of seats7 seater SUV

Tata Safari is the latest entry in the SUV segment in India. However, this name isn’t a new one in the industry and you don’t have to be a petrolhead to know about this legendary SUV.

Earlier this year, Tata Motors resurrected its iconic SUV in an all-new avatar. Similar to its sibling, Safari is built on the renowned D8 platform from Land Rover.

In simple words, Safari is a seven-seat variant of Harrier with a few tweaks in design and features. Hence, it is now the flagship SUV of the automaker.

The performance and ride quality of both Harrier and Safari are pretty much the same. However, in terms of comfort Safari seems to be one of the best cars in its segment.

In addition to the features that are available in Harrier, you get a more premium interior due to the signature oyster white color theme and the option of two captain seats. The seats as well as the upholstery come wrapped in white perforated leather.

Plus the extra space you get on Safari fills most of the gaps that were missing in Harrier.

Considering all the aspects, we can say Tata Safari is a nice option for those looking for a spacious, robust, and premium-looking SUV.

Cons

  • Lookwise it isn’t very different from Tata Harrier
  • Third-row access is quite congested.

6. MG Hector Plus

MG Hector Plus
Image: MG Motors
MG Hector PlusSpecifications
Price Rs 13.96-19.94 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (on-road)Rs 16.06-23.52 lakh
Engine Options1.5-liter Turbo Petrol (Manual and Automatic Transmission)
1.5-liter Turbo Hybrid Petrol (Manual Transmission)
2.0-liter Diesel (Manual Transmission)
Engine Specs1.5-liter Turbo – 141 BHP and 250 Nm of Torque
1.5-liter Hybrid – 141 BHP and 250 Nm of Torque
2.0-liter Diesel – 167.6 BHP and 350 Nm of Torque
Fuel-Efficiency1.5-liter Turbo – 11.71 km/l
1.5-liter Hybrid – 14.0 km/l
2.0-liter Diesel – 16.50 km/l
DrivetrainFWD
No. Of Seats6 Seater SUV

MG Hector Plus is simply the bigger version of Hector with some additional features. It’s launched earlier this year and offers features like a captain seat, the trunk opening with leg gestures. The users simply have to slide their feet under the trail gate to open the door. This can be a handy feature as sometimes we have luggage in both hands.

In terms of engine options and performance, it’s the same as that of MG Hector. However, you will have to compromise a bit on mileage.

Cons

  • Not a performance-oriented SUV but rather it’s a comfortable one
  • Two seats in the middle can be arguable for some buyers

7. Kia Seltos

Kia Seltos best suvs under 20 lakhs in terms of features
Image: Kia Motors
Kia SeltosSpecifications
PriceRs 9.95-17.65 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (On-road)Rs 11.13-20.98 lakh
Engine OptionsSmartstream G 1.5-liter MPi Petrol BS6 (Manual Transmission and IVT)
Smartstream G 1.4-liter T-GDi Petrol BS6 (MT and DCT)
1.5-liter Diesel CRDi VGT BS6 (MT and AT)
Engine Specs1.5-liter Petrol MPi – 113 BHP and 144 Nm of Torque
1.4-liter Petrol Turbo- 138 BHP and 242 Nm of Torque
1.5-liter Diesel – 113 BHP and 250 Nm of Torque
Fuel-Efficiency1.5-liter MPi – 16.8 km/l
1.4-liter Turbo – 16.1 km/l
1.5-liter Diesel – 20.0 km/l
DrivetrainFWD
No. Of Seats5 Seater SUV

This newbie in the market has attracted many customers with its outstanding looks and features. Seltos is the first car from South Korean automaker Kia Motors in India.

We can say it’s one of the most stylish, comfortable, and best sub-compact SUVs under 20 lakhs. Kia Seltos comes equipped with features like an electric sunroof, smart air purifier, Bose premium 8 speaker system, ventilated and power seats, a 10.25″ HD touchscreen with 8″ heads-up display, and much more.

In terms of ride quality, it’s more or less similar to that of Creta. However, Kia has provided all four disc brakes as standard across all variants that significantly improves stability while braking.

Apart from this, the SUV recently got crash-tested from global NCAP and it received a three-star rating for its base model. Three-star is an average safety rating. However, considering the brand and price of Kia Seltos, it’s somewhat not up to the expectation.

Cons

  • At present, the company does not have a strong service network.
  • Might not get a very good resale value

8. Hyundai Creta

Hyundai Creta
Image: Hyundai
Hyundai CretaSpecifications
PriceRs 10.16-17.87 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (On-road)Rs 11.86- 20.99 lakh
Engine Options1.5-liter MPi Petrol BS6 (Manual and IVT)
1.4-liter Kappa Turbo GDi (DCT)
1.5-liter Diesel CRDi VGT BS6 (MT and AT)
Engine Specs1.5-liter MPi – 113 BHP and 144 Nm of Torque
1.4-liter Turbo – 138 BHP and 242 Nm of Torque
1.5-liter Diesel – 113 BHP and 250 Nm of Torque
Fuel-Efficiency1.5-liter MPi – 16.8 km/l
1.4-liter Turbo – 16.8 km/l
1.5-liter Diesel- 21.3 km/l
DrivetrainFWD
No. Of Seats5 seater SUV

Hyundai Creta shares the same platform and engine as its cousin Kia Seltos. However, aesthetically both SUVs have their own unique identity. Creta has few additional features, such as different driving modes for snow, mud, and sand depending upon the surface.

In terms of performance and ride quality, one could hardly feel any difference between Creta and Kia Seltos.

However, the best part about owning Creta is that Hyundai has a well-established service network, unlike Kia and other new brands. In addition, service cost and maintenance cost is also reasonable.

Cons

  • Braking not as good as that of Kia Seltos
  • People have mixed views about the design of new Creta.

9. Mahindra Thar: One Of The Best SUVs Under 20 Lakhs For Off-roading

Mahindra Thar best suvs under 20 lakhs for offroading.
Image: Mahindra
Mahindra TharSpecifications
PriceRs 12.78-15.08 lakh (ex-showroom)
Price (On-road)Rs 15.23-18.25 lakh
Engine Options2.0-liter Petrol Stallion150 BS6 (MT and AT)
2.2-liter Diesel mHawk130 BS6 (MT and AT)
Engine Specs2.0-liter Petrol – 148 BHP and 300 Nm of Torque (320 Nm with AT)
2.2-liter Diesel – 130 BHP and 300 Nm of Torque
Fuel-Efficiency2.0-liter Petrol – 14.5 km/l
2.2-liter Diesel – 15.2 km/l
Drivetrain4WD
No. Of SeatsUp to 6 Seats

The all-new Mahindra Thar is a perfect choice if you are looking for a budget SUV for off-roading. Mahindra Thar is the only SUV in this range that has a 4WD configuration. It’s an all-terrain vehicle that can take you wherever you want. In addition, it’s equally comfortable and fun to drive in cities and highways as well.

If you are an adventure-loving person and enjoy riding in the woods, then it’s the best option for you.

Apart from that, the all-new Thar can easily grab anyone’s attention with its sporty design. It is muscular and safer than ever before. It’s equipped with features like ESP, Roll Cage, dual airbags, and ABS to make your ride even safer.

Furthermore, Mahindra has incorporated numerous features to make your ride comfortable and convenient.

Cons

  • It’s a typical off-roading SUV and not suitable for everyone
  • Considering the size of the Mahindra Thar, some people might find boot space a bit small.
  • There are only two side doors and it can be a bit uncomfortable for rear passengers.

Which Is The Best SUV Under 20 Lakhs? Our Recommendation

There are plenty of options in this segment. It mostly depends on individuals and their needs that will help in deciding the best car for them. If you want an SUV with a 4WD configuration then in this range there is only one option which is Mahindra Thar.

Jeep Compass is also available with a 4WD drive train, but that variant cost more than 20 lakhs. Apart from this, if we have to choose one good all-around SUV, then it would be Tata Safari and after that Mahindra XUV500 as both of them provides a perfect blend of features, performance, and comfort.

Furthermore, MG Hector and Hector Plus are the most premium-looking SUVs here.

Anyway, all these cars have both good as well as a few bad qualities. You can choose anyone as per your requirements. Do tell us in the comments section below which one you prefer?

Shaheer Anwar

Shaheer Anwar

Shaheer Anwar is an automotive enthusiast and writes about the latest trends happening in the industry. He covers topics related to electric and hybrid vehicles.

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