Toyota Innova HyCross vs MG Hector Facelift: Comparo
We might seem in a bit of a hurry to write this comparison, as the Hector isn’t even revealed. But amongst the current crop of crossovers, the new Hector will probably be the HyCross’s toughest rival.
The Toyota Innova HyCross isn’t an MPV like the Innova Crysta. It is based on Toyota’s TNGA-C platform which also underpins the Corolla sedan and Corolla Cross compact SUV. This means it is an MPV-SUV Crossover, as said by the chief engineer of the HyCross at unveil. So it qualifies as a direct rival to the likes of the Tata Safari, Mahindra XUV 700, and MG Hector/Hector Plus. But while Tata Motors and Mahindra make a lot of song and dance about their respective cars being SUVs (Tata Motors once got mad at us for calling the Harrier a crossover, we swear), MG doesn’t insist nor does it promote the Hector to be a capable, tough as nails SUV. Neither does the Hector attempt to mimic a true blue SUV with its looks.
Additionally, once the deliveries of the Innova HyCross begin in January 2023, the freshest among its rivals will be the MG Hector facelift, which will be launched in India on 5th January. So let’s put these two head-to-head based on the details we know so far.
HyCross vs Hector : Exterior
The MG Hector facelift gets minor updates to the front facia. Most distinctive among those is the new bigger grille, with chrome finished diamond-style insertions contrasted on a gloss black mesh. The foglamp housing and the borders for the front grille will be finished in gloss black, unlike chrome finished one’s on the current model. The reshaped headlamps will get LED projectors. The side profile looks pretty much unchanged. In fact, the alloy wheels seen in the leaked pictures are identical to the one’s on the current Hector. The rear bumper gets a restyle and is finished in black. It gets a chrome stripe accentuating its shape. So, the facelift is less of an update in terms of looks and more about features and livability, as you’ll further see.
The Innova HyCross, as Toyota has been saying since the first teaser, incorporates SUV styling. The front grille is now bigger, wider, and flatter. The bonnet is more upright than earlier. The front airdam runs across the width of the car. That’s where the horizontal DRLs are and they further highlight the width of the car. There is a fair bit of chrome garnish to the styling elements to make it look premium, but not gaudy. The side profile reveals a wheel arch protectors and black cladding running across the length of the car. The 18-inch super-chrome alloy wheels add to the premium quotient of the HyCross. The rear end is now flatter and the lines running across the width of the rear bumper give it a wider stance. There is just a right amount of chrome everywhere to accentuate the design without making it feel over the top and tacky.
HyCross vs Hector: Interior
MG Motors India teased the interior of the all-new MG Hector a while back. It gets a revamped dashboard layout that is based on MG’s Symphony of Luxury design philosophy. As evident from the pictures, it looks more upmarket than before with the use of soft-touch materials over the dashboard. The portrait-style infotainment screen is also larger and will offer more features along with wireless Android Auto/ Apple Car Play. The Hector will get ventilated front seats, Oak White leather seat upholstery, electric seat adjustment for front seats, and a memory function. The revised air vents with a horizontally oriented design get accentuated by brushed aluminum inserts. The SUV will get a 6 seater option along with the 7 seater variant. MG Motors India will also give the Hector multi-color ambient lights for the additional luxe touch. Overall, the facelifted Hector’s cabin will be much more luxurious than before and give the Innova HyCross a serious run for the money.
The Innova HyCross’s interior is a huge departure from that of the previous Innova iterations. The Innova’s interior has always felt utilitarian, although very comfortable. The Innova Hycross dashboard is also horizontally oriented which accentuated the width of the car. There is a 10.1-inch floating-style touchscreen infotainment system atop the center of the dashboard. The infotainment will have connected features that can be controlled via a smartphone app. Additionally, it will get wireless Android Auto/ Apple Car Play. Thankfully, Toyota has given physical Home and Back buttons for the infotainment system. The gear lever is mounted on the center console which frees up space in between the front seats for a clean look as well as for additional storage. It gets wireless charging, a side-hinged driver armrest, cupholders, and other buttons for Vehicle drive mode, EV Mode, Electronic Parking Brake, etc.
The Innova gets chestnut brown leather seat upholstery. The front seats are ventilated which is a boon in Indian weather conditions. But, the highlight of the Innova HyCross is the rear seats. The middle row captain seats get Ottoman function at the press of a button, which provides a calf and footrest for the occupant. The seats also get electronic recline adjustment, with a high recline angle for a lounge-style middle-row seating experience. There is also a panoramic sunroof for the first time in an Innova, which will bring more light into the large cabin making it feel airy.
The MG Hector will continu employing the Fiat sourced 2 litre diesel engine and a 1.4 litre Multilair petrol engine. While outputs (168bhp, 350 NM for diesel, 141bhp and 250 NM for petrol) are bound to remain unchanged, there is a possibility that MG might give the Hector a mild Hybrid system. In the Philippines, MG recently showcased a strong hybrid version of the Hector. While it is unclear whether that version will make it to the Indian shores, a strong Hybrid powertrain will certainly eat into the sales of the Innova HyCross. Word is also around that the diesel variant of the Hector may not get an automatic transmission option.
The Innova HyCross will not get a diesel engine option. While there are two petrol engines options, Toyota has also given the boot to the Manual transmission. The base variants will be powered by a Naturally Aspirated 2.0 litre petrol engine, making 172bhp and 205 NM. This engine will be paired to a CVT gearbox. The Strong Hybrid Engine is the same 2 litre engine as above, paired to a Strong Hybrid System which uses Atkinson Cycles. Surprisingly, Toyota has used NiMH batteries instead of Lithium Ion batteries. For this powertrain, Toyota has claimed 21.1 kmpl fuel efficiency. Meaning, the HyCross Strong Hybrid will have a range of 1097 km on a single tank of fuel, which is impressive.
HyCross vs Hector: Price
There is no word on the price for either of the two cars. But our estimate is that the Innova Hycross will have a starting price of Rs.24 lakh (Ex-showroom). The price for the top-end Strong Hybrid variant would approximately be Rs. 31 lakh (ex-showroom).
The MG Hector will have a price advantage as it will undercut the HyCross by quite a large margin. We expect prices to start at Rs. 15.5 lakh (ex-showroom) for the base variant. Should MG launch the strong Hybrid variant of the Hector in India, it will have (approximately) a starting price of Rs.27 lakh (ex-showroom).