2019 has been a turbulent year for the Indian auto market. For large parts of the year, many of the major automakers suffered a loss of revenue and a downturn in sales. On several accounts, this has been the worst auto crisis in over 2 decades. Having said that, the decade, in general, has been one of success and innovation.
Some of the world's best automakers entered India this decade, while some are on the verge of bringing cutting edge tech to the country. New cars were launched, some popular, others not quite, but one thing is quite clear, the cars on Indian roads only increased in the last decade.
Here are the top 10 cars that broke through in the last 10 years in the Indian market
- Ford Mustang
The iconic Ford Mustang made its debut in India in 2016. While Mustang was available in different powertrain options in the international market, Ford brought only the Fastback version to India, which includes 5.0-liter V8 engine coupled with a 6-speed automatic transmission. While Ford was very much a part of the Indian market, for the first time, it brought its ace racehorse to the Indian market.
- Honda Civic
Honda Civic has been one of Honda's iconic cars over the years. After a spell on the sidelines, Honda Civic was reintroduced in the Indian auto market in 2019. The car was an instant hit. The new Honda Civic stood out among the competition. The sales numbers in the early months boosted Honda's overall sales for 2019.
- Ford EcoSport
Ford EcoSport was in a way a gamechanger in the Indian market. The car might not have achieved greatness as far as individual sales figures go, but Ford EcoSport was the dawn of a new segment of cars in India, which would then in time go on to become one of the most popular segments in the Indian market -- Compact SUV segment. Following the EcoSport, several carmakers will bring in a compact segment car in the Indian market.
- Volkswagen Polo GT
Volkswagen Polo GT was another revolutionary launch this decade. The car broke a common myth that hatchbacks cannot pack a punch. Polo GT was launched with a DSG gearbox in petrol with a TSI engine, and it was by far the fastest hatchback in India at the time of its launch. The car was also available in a diesel TDI engine option.
- KIA Seltos
Korean carmaker KIA entered the Indian market at the very end of the decade with it's compact SUV segment Seltos. KIA Seltos was an instant hit in the Indian audience. So much so that after it's first month of sales, KIA Seltos had already broken through into the top 10 sold cars of the month. Much of it is credited to the popularity of the compact SUV segment, however, the features offered by KIA Seltos were a cut above its competition.
- Maruti Suzuki Ciaz
The launch of Maruti Suzuki Ciaz meant that Maruti was entering the mid-size sedan class. With all the trust Maruti has gained in the Indian market over the years, and the loyal customer base that the brand upholds, Maruti Ciaz was bound to be one of the most popular cars in the country. And since then, Maruti Ciaz is one of the highest sold C-segment Sedans.
- Honda City - Diesel
Honda launching diesel engines in India was one of the highlights of the decade. It was a time when diesel engines were growing in popularity in the Indian market and Honda's sales were being affected because of its entire fleet having petrol engines. Honda not only launched diesel engines in City but also in its other popular cars including Amaze, CRV and later Civic. Despite Honda's diesel engines not breaking any numbers, it was still a much-welcomed development.
- Jeep Compass
Jeep made it's debut in the Indian market with the Compass. This was yet another big development as the Compass was portrayed as the little sister of Grand Cherokee, Jeep's bigshot SUV that is popular worldwide. The Compass had decent sales in India. Yet another compact SUV, Compass was priced a bit on the higher side, but with the coming of the newer age compact SUVs it was pretty much balanced.
- Mercedes Benz CLA
Mercedes Benz CLA was another launch that was much appreciated by the Indian public. At a price considerably less than the Merc C-Class, the German marque started selling a stylish compact sedan with unheard-of features like frameless doors and sporty seats. The CLA was widely loved in India and is still considered as one of the smartest sedans in the country.
- Isuzu D-Max V-Cross
Isuzu D-Max V-Cross was one of the most muscular looking car to get launched in the last decade. On paper it is a pick-up truck, which is unheard-of for day to day usage in India. But the car was widely appreciated and the company sold good numbers. It is one of a kind car, very attractively priced and no other car in the segment comes anywhere near the structure that Isuzu D-Max V-Cross possesses