Top 10 Cheapest 4x4 SUVs In India

  • Jul 15, 2014

The craze for four-wheel drive vehicles in India has increased at a rapid pace. There are a plethora of options in the market now. Available with varying levels of equipment and features, these rugged vehicles strike a balance between performing on the road and allowing their owners to go off-the-road as desired. While some of these machines tend to have a higher cost of maintenance, not everyone of them are very expensive to purchase. Many of the SUVs with 4x4 are available in a diesel engine option making it cheaper to run them compared to their petrol engine counterparts. Consumers in India have been increasingly buying SUVs with 4x4 option as the enthusiast base for these machines have been growing at a quick pace.


Were you keen getting your brand new 4x4 vehicle/SUV? Today we’ve come up with the list of the 10 cheapest 4x4 available on sale in India and you can be sure of finding something that fits your budget.

1. Mahindra Thar

Variant: DI, Diesel with Manual Transmission, 7 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price: 5.30 Lakhs
Engine: 2.5L, 105PS @ 3800 rpm


Thar is the best bet if you are looking for a retro jeep styling with powerful 4x4 features and capability. It also happens to be the most affordable 4x4 in our list. The base 4x4 variant starts with the Thar DI. The interior features are quite basic but this vehicle is meant largely for the enthusiasts seeking adventure and it ticks off all the right boxes here! It has a ladder frame chassis and independent front suspension. It has an excellent approach and departure angles for extreme off-roading activities and a generous ground clearance of 200mm. This is a vehicle which you will find yourselves to be comfortable with on the road, but you will enjoy it best in its natural habit which is off the tarmac! It is available in a 4x2 variant but that isn’t meant for serious enthusiasts also the top variant with all the bells and whistles is priced at 7.35 lakhs ex-Delhi.


2. Maruti Gypsy

Variant: Soft Top, Petrol with Manual Transmission, 8 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price: 5.82 Lakhs
Engine: 1.3L, 80PS @ 6000 rpm


A true legend in the Indian context the Gypsy has been around since the 1985 and in its current avatar since 1996. It is almost a household name in the country. Used widely by the Indian Army it is a rugged vehicle which has been tried and tested in the harshest of conditions. Available in two variants; Soft Top and Hard Top the Gypsy offers an excellent platform for enthusiasts to mod their favourite SUV even further. The vehicle can seat many but isn’t known for having the most comfortable ride for all. The interiors are functional but remain well designed. It has a capable 5 speed gearbox with 4 wheel drive and good engine performance and braking power to tackle any kind of terrain.

3. Force Gurkha

Variant: Soft Top 4x4, Diesel with Manual Transmission, 6 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price:  8.35 Lakhs
Engine: 2.6L, 82PS @ 3200 rpm


Gurkha is another one of the exciting options in our list of affordable 4x4 SUVs available in the country. Designed on the lines of Merc G Wagon the Gurkha looks the part of a true off roader and does the job as well. Built for off-roading enthusiasts and exploring jungle trails this vehicle has short overhangs and excellent approach and departure angles. With its differential locks you will be able to conquer almost every terrain. The engine is powerful with loads of torque. The exterior design is pleasing to the eye especially with the snorkel mounted on it.


However it lacks some creature comforts and its performance on road is just about satisfactory. The top variant Gurkha Hard Top is priced at 8.50 Lakhs and is a promising buy, although the sales numbers for the Gurkha are yet to make its presence felt strongly against its rivals.

4. Mahindra Scorpio

Variant: LX 4x4, Diesel with Manual Transmission, 7 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price:  10.02 Lakhs
Engine: 2.2L, 127Bhp @ 4000 rpm


One of the most popular SUVs in the country and built indigenously offers excellent value at its price. While the base variant starts from 8.21 Lakh rupees the 4WD variant starts with the LX at 10.02 Lakhs. The top variant VLX 4x4 is priced at 12.17 Lakhs. The SUV comes loaded with features. The base 4x4 variant-LX comes with Central Locking, AC w/Heater, Rear AC Vents and child locks.

The transmission includes Low ratio allowing you to crawl in extreme off-road situations. At the price point it makes it pocket friendly to most enthusiasts looking to buying a comfortable 4x4 SUV. For Mahindra, the Scorpio SUV is a successful product and this SUV has seen every kind of terrain with its enthusiastic owners who have driven it cross country and across mountains.

5. Tata Safari Storme

Variant: VX 4x4, Diesel with Manual Transmission, 7 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price: 13.82 Lakhs
Engine: 2.2L, 140PS @ 4000 rpm


The new generation Safari Storme was updated not so long ago and brings exciting exteriors and comes packed with plenty of features. The interiors are nicer and there’s a lot of comfort features available as standard with the top variant which also incidentally comes with the 4x4 option. The powerful motor coupled with the manual transmission makes it one of the best SUVs for long distance driving and off-road expeditions. The ride quality is plush and derives its suspension from the Aria.


It features Electronic Shift On The Fly (ESOF) which allows one to shift from 2WD to 4WD mode while on the move. Some of the features includes ABS + EBD, rack and pinion steering, disc brakes on all wheels and dual SRS airbags make it one of the best SUVs in the country. While Tata sales seems to have dropped considerably over the past months the Safari series have always been a hit with the customers.

6. Mahindra XUV5OO

Variant: W8 AWD, Diesel with Manual Transmission, 7 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price:  14.65 Lakhs
Engine: 2.2L, 140Bhp @ 3750 rpm


XUV 500 has been a strong contender in its segment and is one of the best selling SUVs for Mahindra. It packs a long list of exciting features; exterior and interior to make up its excellent VFM package. The massive road presence and excellent highway capabilities have made it one of the favourite SUVs in the market. The engine produces loads of torque and comes mated to a 6 speed gearbox. The 4x4 version comes in the top variant only while there are other 4x2 version to choose from. The interiors are spacious and equipment list runs high. However the gearbox isn’t amongst the smoothest and dynamics isn’t the best in class. However if you are looking for a 4x4 SUV in the 15L price range then is one of the best options you’ve got!

7. Tata Aria

Variant: Pride 4x4, Diesel with Manual Transmission, 7 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price:  14.73 Lakh
Engine: 2.2L, 150PS @ 4000 rpm


The Aria is another 4x4 vehicle in our list. It may not be a true SUV but it does come pretty close to bridging the gap in some ways. With its powerful motor producing a healthy torque of around 320 Nm it is indeed a joy to drive on the highways. Tata has paid a lot of attention to this product and it shows as this is certainly one of the best Tata cars in the market today. The interiors come shod with leather upholstery while the capable engine and gearbox takes you places. The top variant is one of the few vehicles in this price range to feature traction control.

The steering wheel is chunky and the ergonomics are are good. The top variant Pride also comes with black and plum interiors with brush metal inserts. Aria has not been a best seller in the segment infact far from it but it does bring a lot of bang for buck.

8. Grand Vitara

Variant: MT AWD, Petrol with Manual Transmission, 5 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price: 20.54 Lakh
Engine: 2.4L, 164Bhp @ 6000 rpm


The Grand Vitara is one of rare SUVs that we see on our roads. Indeed an underrated vehicle it hasn’t seen the commercial success as the rest of the vehicles in the Maruti portfolio. However, that’s not to say that it isn’t a good vehicle. Capable on and off the road and quite reliable, the Vitara continues as an option in the 4x4 market in the 20L price range. It was last updated by Maruti in 2009 and hasn’t been touched since but it continues to have an appeal with its rugged and handsome looks and spare wheel mounted on the fifth door.

It remains a comfortable SUV to drive but the downside has been the lack of a diesel mill in the Indian context. The fuel efficiency, interior quality and features, lack of a premium image and in general poor re-sale value are some of the negatives that continue to plague this otherwise capable vehicle. The interior design feels a bit outdated given the new crop of contenders, yet remains a bit sporty nevertheless. One of the plus points of this vehicle is the huge Maruti dealer network enable service and spares at just about any nook and corner of the country.

9. SsangYong Rexton W

Variant: RX 7 AT, Diesel with Automatic Transmission, 7 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price: 21.11 Lakh
Engine: 2.7L, 164PS @ 4000 rpm


The Rexton W is Mahindra’s attempt at closing-in on the luxury SUV segment. SsangYong is owned by Mahindra which has improved the company’s portfolio with the Rexton W. The Rexton combines the features that should be available in a modern SUV with its excellent exterior and interior packaging and all of this at very good value for money. It has one of the most powerful motors in our line-up and the beefy looks has given it a favourable status in the market very quickly.


It has a long list of equipment and the automatic gearbox ensures an effortless drive despite being a bit lazy when it comes to its gear shift quality. The ride quality is very good and ensures a comfortable long distance haul for its passengers. It may not be one of the best handling its class, it remains a worthy competitor.  It is available in 2 MT variants and 1 AT variant and as is the case with most cars the 4x4 option comes with the top variant only.

10. Honda CR-V

Variant: 2.4L AWD, Petrol with Automatic Transmission, 5 Seater
Ex-showroom New Delhi Price: 22.88 Lakh
Engine: 2.4L, 190PS @ 7000 rpm


The facelifted version of the CR-V looks and feels much better over its predecessor. It is packed with the latest gizmos and looks futuristic from every angle. The large wheels and big wheel arch gives it a muscular profile. The boot space is huge at 589 liters and can be further extended. Amongst the SUVs in the market in the 20L price range the CR-V offers an engaging driving experience. Despite being more of a crossover and less of a Sports-Utility Vehicle it remains a car that is great to drive on-road despite its size and weight.


Dual SRS Airbags with side and curtain airbags, ABS + EBD, Hill Start Assist and Parking brake it is indeed one of the most feature packed vehicles which also exhibits near car-like road manners. The engine is smooth, refined and versatile and comes mated to an Automatic Gearbox which makes it a breeze to drive it in the congested cities and on the open highways.

However there were a few more cars which unfortunately did not make it on our list of the top 10 affordable SUVs:

1. Mahindra Bolero

Mahindra Bolero 4x4 DI Non AC has an ex-showroom price of just 5.69 Lakhs but this 4x4 variant isn’t sold to the general public anymore and is apparently reserved for the likes of the Armed Forces and in general Government use only. Hence it had to be excluded.


2. Tata Xenon XT

Despite being a capable 4x4 vehicle the Tata Xenon XT hasn’t sold in good numbers for the company. The vehicle has a powerful engine which makes 140 PS at 4000 rpm from its diesel motor and a fuel efficiency of 13.49 kmpl and is capable of seating 5 in all. The poor sales numbers ensured that it didn’t meet our criteria for selection. It has a New Delhi ex-showroom price of 11.03 Lakhs.


3. Skoda Yeti

A capable long distance hauler and generally capable 4x4 machine with excellent on-road performance and car-like handling dynamics. A powerful motor and loads of features. The new Skoda Yeti is yet to come our way and hence had to excluded from our list for the time being.


Stay tuned to for more dope on the latest news and features on the Indian car market.

Image Credits: Respective Trademarks

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