October 16, 2021 03:00 AM
MG Motor is betting on the artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomous driving features on the Astor to attract customers of the mid-size SUV segment which has seen rapid rise in demand
British automotive brand MG Motor has launched the Astor sports utility vehicle in India with prices starting Rs 9.78 lakh (ex-showroom). These are introductory prices, the company informed.
MG is betting on the artificial intelligence (AI) and autonomous driving features on the Astor to attract customers of the mid-size SUV segment which has seen a rapid rise in demand. This segment generates around 28,000-30,000 unit’s sales every month.
The Astor claims to be India’s first personal AI assistant and first-in-segment autonomous (Level 2) technology. The mid-size SUV will rival the segment leader Hyundai Creta followed by Kia Seltos, Volkswagen Taigun, Skoda Kushaq, Renault Duster, Nissan Kicks and Mahindra Scorpio. Maruti Suzuki and Tata Motors do not have a product in this sub-segment.
The Astor will be sold in four variants in manual and automatic transmission options. The top-end variant is priced at Rs 16.78 lakh. Bookings for the Astor will officially begin on October 21 but customers can pre-reserve the vehicle from October 11.
While MG is one of the several companies severely impacted by the shortage of semiconductors, deliveries of the Astor are expected to begin in November. Before December 2021 end MG hopes to complete 5000 deliveries of the Astor.
Like some of its rivals, the Astor too will be available only with petrol-powered engines. The car carries the option of two engines, 1.5 litre, and 1.3 litre. The 1498cc naturally aspirated engine, which is mated to a five-speed manual and a CVT gearbox, delivers a peak power of 110ps. The 1349cc turbocharged engine, mated to a six-speed automatic gearbox, delivers peak power of 140ps.
The Level 2 autonomous driving features of the MG Astor are automatic braking, adaptive cruise control, rear-drive assist, intelligent headlamps, and a speed assist system. The SUV also has a personal AI assistant that can take voice commands for a variety of features such as controlling the sunroof, air-conditioning, infotainment functions, and making hands-free calls.
25.7 cm HD touchscreen Android Auto and Apple Carplay, steering mounted audio controls, digital car key, vehicle status check, anti-theft immobilisation, 5 USB charging points, auto AC and rear AC vents, PM 2.5 filter, auto headlamps, rain-sensing wipers, panoramic sunroof, 360-degree view cameras, electric parking brake, six airbags, ASB with EBD, traction control system and hill hold control.
Rajeev Chaba, President, and MD, MG Motor India said, “We know the current global situation around the shortage of components such as semiconductors, due to which deliveries remain a question mark. We are expecting to complete 5000 deliveries in the calendar year 2021 and the momentum will continue into 2022.”