The Sports Utility Vehicle is a staple for the Indian masses now, but there are some SUVs which only the ultra-rich can even dream of purchasing and these cars are the absolute pinnacle of automotive engineering until another surpasses them.
Sports Utility Vehicles is a term we are all too familiar with, with the cheapest one starting much below INR 10 Lakhs and generally ranging up to a Crore For the more premium ones. But there are some SUVs which sit much above these, costing as much as a whopping INR 10 Crores which is more than a Lamborghini Aventador in its full spec, most of these are new cars as luxury marques have picked up on the SUV rage and released their own versions and some are massively upgraded versions of existing cars. Let’s start with the discussion of the most expensive SUVs sold in India (as of January 2021).
1. Rolls-Royce Cullinan Black Badge- INR 9.22 Crores
This is the most expensive SUV ever on sale in the world, and there is a reason for it- it carries the Spirit of Ecstasy on the bonnet and that this is a special edition which is the ultimate SUV as many may call it. The car as the name suggests is fully Blacked out, with the RR logo on the front and rear in silver with black background, and the Spirit of Ecstacy in black too. On the inside you get carbon veneer, leather upholstery, starlight headliner which is black as well and the stitching is in Yellow contrasting thread. The big car rides on 22-inch alloy wheels.
The big Rolls is powered by a 6.75 litre Twin-turbocharged V12 engine that makes 600 horsepower and 900 Nm of torque which is more than the standard car, which is mated to a 8-speed automatic transmission which powers all the wheels. The Rolls-Royce Cullinan is the first SUV from the British marque, and just like the other cars features the signature Magic Carpet ride thanks to the active scanning camera which adjusts the suspension in advance for the road and operates up to a 100 kmph. The interior of the car is like a castle, spacious and inexplicably comfortable, and comes with every bit of customisation that one can imagine. Therefore it is no surprise that the price tag surpasses most supercars for this King of SUVs.
2. Land Rover Range Rover 3.0 SVAutobiography LWB- INR 4.8 Crores
The Land Rover’s Range Rover has for more than five decades defined what a proper SUV is, from being the go-to off-roader for Britishers to holding the title of ‘the SUV’ because of its excellent build quality, unbreakable spirit and more importantly the luxury sedan-like comfort it provides. The full-size Range has many variants with the SVAutobiography LWB topping the list, it is powered by a 3 litre Inline-6 turbocharged engine that makes 394 horsepower and 550 Nm of torque. The engine can propel the heavy car to a hundred in just 6.5 seconds.
The car has an extra legroom of 192mm that rides on electronic air suspension, all terrain control, panoramic sunroof. The seats have 24 different settings for massage function and come with heating as well as cooling with the interior tastefully designed with premium leather and wooden inlays. The top Range is a proper off-roader too, and you can take this car to the flashiest of parties and the toughest of terrains, this car and its lower specced models are perhaps the most widely known SUVs around the world and it comes as no surprise that in most British Suburbs almost every household owns a Full-size Range Rover.
3. Bentley Bentayga Speed- INR 4.42 Crores
This is the third British car on the list, and it is pretty evident that if you want to go full expensive British. The Bentayga Speed is a notch above the standard car, and slightly contradictory to how James May, the famous British auto journalist described it as being ‘Driving around in the British library’, this car is a bit of a different animal. The 6 litre W12 now makes a whopping 626 horsepower that propels this very heavy car to a hundred in just 3.9 Seconds and onwards to a top speed of 306 kmph.
It even looks different, with changes to the bumpers and the interior designs, all featuring a darker shade to it giving the Speed an aggressive look. The Bentley also has efficiency improving technologies and smart SIM in the car to keep the vehicle updated with the internet at all times.
4. Lamborghini Urus– INR 3.6 Crores
The first Super-SUV in the world, the Lamborghini is true to its name but also features many firsts for the Italian carmaker, like the use of turbochargers on its 4 litre V8 which makes 641 horsepower. The engine can accelerate it to a hundred in 3.5 seconds and has a top speed of 305 kmph. The Urus also comes with the largest brake discs fitted to any production car, to stop it in time, four-wheel steering, torque vectoring at the rear, to make it fast and agile on any track. The Super SUV does not lack character either, while on paper it is supercar material it is hard to expect the car to actually outrun cars on a track, but what the Lambo can do is that it can hold its own against Porsche 911s and Ferraris on any track, and for a 2.2 ton car that speaks a lot. The Urus is a car that truly deserves the Raging Bull badge on the bonnet.
5. Lexus LX 570- INR 2.7 Crores
The Japanese Lexus LX has been at the forefront of the luxury SUV business for quite a long time now, the 5.7 litre V8 that makes 270 horsepower and accelerates to a hundred in 7.7 seconds. As is the norm with Lexus, the big car has tastefully designed interiors wrapped in leather and wooden inlays with big screens everywhere. In some aspects the car is a Toyota Land Cruiser which has been wrapped in a design that is much more comfortable and premium. The car has proper comfortable seats and one of the best rides of any vehicle, and despite its price tag the Lexus remains a bit understated, unlike the Rolls and the Bentley which command people to take out their smartphones for a snap, this car blends in the traffic.
6. Mercedes-AMG G 63- INR 2.66 Crores
The G-Wagon in its top form the AMG G 63 comes with a 4 litre V8 twin-turbo unit that makes 577 horsepower and 627 pound per feet of torque which powers the four wheels via a nine-speed automatic transmission. The G-Wagon accelerates to a hundred in just 3.9 seconds despite weighing in at 2.6 tons. The car is not a proper Sports utility vehicle in the sense that, as the design has not seen any evolution the car is not really meant for much other than light off-roading and highway driving, but it compensates for all that with its massive curb presence which even supercars fail to command at times.
Also a plus point is the crackle of the side mounted exhausts which give the Mercedes-Benz a very distinctive sound, if you perhaps want to compare it to a Mahindra Bolero in terms of looks, just know that it costs 25 times more and is not just a show car as many people are led to believe.
7. Audi RS Q8– INR 2.4 Crores
The top Audi SUV has been made in proper RS style, featuring a major leaning towards blacked out accents and red themes. It takes a lot of its elements from the Lamborghini Urus which is understandable as Audi owns the Italian company, the car uses the same engine as the Lambo but makes 591 horsepower and has an acceleration time of 3.7 seconds to the hundred. The arrangement between Audi and Lamborghini seems similar to how it was between the R8 and the Gallardo, with both using the same engines tuned differently and priced differently.
Now the fact that the Audi RS Q8 holds the record for the fastest SUV on the Nurburgring, it may even be fair to say that the Germans used some really clever technologies they have learnt from their time competing in Le Mans and other competitions. So if you want the ‘World’s Fastest SUV’ and don’t have the pockets for the Lamborghini or the Bentley, the RS Q8 is the car to go for.
8. Porsche Cayenne Coupé Turbo- INR 2.3 Crores
Porsche which makes the Cayenne, which has remained as one of the premium SUVs that one can buy for more than two decades now has now released a faster and sportier version for the car. The Cayenne made its name by offering true German craftsmanship in a big SUV body, premium materials and many other features which surpasses the models from the likes of BMW, Mercedes and Audi. The Cayenne Coupe features a more aggressive roof line which drops dramatically, hence the name coupe. The changes to the roofline makes the car sit a bit lower about 30 millimeters.
The Turbo variant comes with a 4 litre V8 with two turbos strapped onto it, making 542 horsepower and has a 3.9 second acceleration time to a hundred. The Porsche still remains as practical as the standard car, but in this variant features a strong resemblance to the 911 profile, something that individuals dearly covet. So if you want a fast German SUV which is a Porsche, the Cayenne Coupe Turbo is the perfect choice for you.
9. BMW X5 M Competition- INR 2.23 Crores
The Beamer has been around for some time now, but now the twin-turbo V8 makes 617 horsepower and 750 Nm of torque which puts it ahead of several other vehicles on this list. What’s more is that this is not simplay a M-badged car, it has been to the BMW Motorsport development centre, which gives this gigantic car the acceleration of a sports car, at 3.8 seconds. This car is for those who want a proper SUV, and the X5 is right at the top and gets perfected every year, the car is practical too and is a treat for long trips owing to its massive boot and comfortable seating.
Despite the numbers, the X5 M Competition has a flaw that it is not as sporty as its name suggests, the standard X5 can tackle a lot of rough terrain, but this one is lower and made for tarmac speed rather than slow incline climbing and this may deter some buyers, but nonetheless. Any car that comes out of BMW’s Lunatic bin named M is a car one can trust to give the thrill of the ride on the road at any given time.
10. Porsche Cayenne Turbo- INR 2.22 Crores
The only standard car in this list that you may see on a daily drive through the metropolitan cities in India. The Porsche has been a staple SUV, and in India where we do not get cars like the Cadillac Escalade, the Cayenne has been a very popular car here because of the standard features it offers. In the Turbo variant the twin-turbo V8 makes 550 horsepower and comes with the famed PDK transmission that has made Porsches a world-renowned brand in terms of performance.
In simple words, the Cayenne offers something that many other cars don’t, exclusivity. Porsche is a small company with not a lot of sales, but if you wanted to be recognised by your vehicle it is always better to go with the Cayenne with the signature curvy Porsche design than a BMW or an Audi.
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