We have been waiting for Tata’s micro SUV for a long time. But, unfortunately, the pandemic again delayed it further. However, the production version of the HBX in showrooms would be only available towards the end of 2021.
Nevertheless, we have managed to review the concept and managed to check out the car in detail. Here is our first look review.
How does the Tata HBX look?
We are happy to report that the production version of the HBX will keep the radical design of the concept, which is its biggest USP (Unique Selling Proposition). It is a micro SUV but punches above its weight in terms of presence.
The face of the HBX is similar to the Harrier as it gets the latest design trend with headlamps below, while the slim strip of DRLs is above along with a two-part grille. It also looks like a proper SUV from the front with cladding and a skid plate.
What can change are the massive wheels and off-road tires that the concept has in the images here. In place of that, we expect smaller road-biased tires and 16-inch wheels. In terms of length, it is just shorter than the other subcompact SUVs, but not much.
The tapered rear is the biggest hint of its compactness. It will have a length of 3860mm and a width of 1900mm, while the height is 1880mm. The production version will have accessories and also sport dual-tone color options too.
What about the interiors?
Relatively, the interior is just another version of the same in a Tiago or an Altroz. The steering wheel is shared with the Altroz, and so is the part digital instrument cluster too.
There is also a 7-inch touch screen. The center console also seems different with a change in the design of the air vents and the dashboard. Interestingly, the quality and the concept of blank space in the middle are pretty good.
The HBX is a compact crossover, but space is actually quite good. It also has a wide door opening mechanism along with a wheelbase of 2445 mm. Headroom and legroom are quite good, but things would be a bit uncomfortable if there are three persons in the rear seats.
The boot is also expected to hold a good volume. It would get the aforementioned touch screen, smartphone connectivity, rear parking and sensors, climate control, steering controls, and more in terms of features. Sadly, the HBX would not get the connected tech feature like the Altroz. However, Tata could surprise us with that one!
What about the engine options for the HBX?
Unlike the Altroz or the Nexon, there will be no diesel engine since the price or the demand for small cars with diesel engines are less due to the cost constraints of a modern BS6 unit. So a petrol non turbo engine would be seen in the starting variants since the naturally aspirated unit of the Tiago and Altroz fits the bill.
Standard would be a 5-speed manual gearbox, while an AMT would not launch immediately. The flagship variants could get the Altroz turbo petrol which is a detuned unit of the Nexon. It will get drive modes for this version too.
Launch Date and Pricing
As mentioned earlier, the launch has been delayed several times, but it would be coming towards the end of the year, while the other question is even more interesting since it depends on how Tata Motors wants to play this out.
The HBX is for those who want an SUV but on a budget, much like the Renault Kiger or Nissan Magnite. Since those two SUVs expect a starting price of around Rs 5 lakh, the HBX would be an appealing alternative to a conventional hatchback or a compact sedan.