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Top 5 Best Cars for College Students in India

College time is one of the best days in one’s life. Freedom from schedules, a group of close friends and ample time at hand – this is undoubtedly a perfect recipe to have some fun. But in order to do so, you might need a car. Having your own car in college not only helps in daily commutes but also becomes a style statement. There is a very famous saying in the automotive world – The car you drive shows where you stand in the society! As a result, it is very important to carefully select a car that suits your needs and personality, something that you can be proud of while getting out of in your college’s parking lot.

Now we do acknowledge the fact that there aren’t many people in India who have detailed knowledge about cars. This makes it very difficult for them to choose the best car for their needs and aspirations. This is where we come to help!

But before we start with the list of best cars in India for students, there are a few points that you need to keep note of:

  • We have covered a wide range of prices in order to offer one car for every price bracket. This will help our article to be helpful for approximately every student car buyer.
  • However, since most of the college going car buyers don’t go beyond the Rs. 10 lakh mark, we have only considered options that are below this bracket.
  • Additionally, we understand that an average college-goer needs to have various technological feature in his/her new car. As a result, we have only considered variants that come with basic features like in-car entertainment system.

With the aforementioned clauses out of the equation, let’s now focus on the main parameter. Following is a list of 5 best cars for college students in India.


1. Renault Kwid

If you are looking to buy an entry-level car for your regular college commutes and occasional highway trips, the Renault Kwid is your best option. Having SUV-like design cues and dimensions that are larger than all cars in this segment, the Kwid feels a lot bigger than its immediate competitors. And for college students, bigger is better (no pun intended)!

Consider this, for the price of the Kwid, other options available include the Maruti Alto, Datsun redi-GO and the Maruti WagonR. Now, the Alto can never be considered to be a college student’s ideal buy. It has boring looks, absence of any advanced features and no youthful value to its name. The redi-GO, on the other hand, is a bit overboard in terms of its exterior design and a bit bland on the inside. The dimensions too make it look smaller.

This is where the Kwid outshines by a huge margin. It features a youthful design with the chubby front bumper, upright nose, blacked out headlamps, perspective grille design, a large wheelbase, body cladding for the SUV-ish looks and a well-blended rear. The interiors too get a very nicely laid out dashboard, while the quality of materials used is also satisfactorily good for this price range.

Then there is the party piece – the touchscreen infotainment system that comes with Bluetooth connectivity and rear view camera. No other car in this price band offers the equipment that the Kwid does. These features are available only in the top end RxT variant, which further comes with remote keyless entry, front fog lamps, and optional driver-side airbag (with the RxT(O) variant).

Additionally, depending on whether or not you love your cars to be good on power, the Kwid can be opted with two engine options. An 800 cc, 3-cylinder petrol for the regular drivers and a 1.0-litre, 3-cylinder petrol for those who like to take every horse from the engine out. And there’s more! While a 5-speed MT gearbox is standard on both models, the Kwid 1.0 can also be opted with an AMT gearbox, making it an ideal city car.

Prices (ex-showroom, Delhi)

  • Kwid RxT MT – Rs. 3.67 lakh
  • Kwid RxT(O) MT – Rs. 3.80 lakh
  • Kwid 1.0 RxT MT – Rs. 3.89 lakh
  • Kwid 1.0 RxT(O) MT – Rs. 4.02 lakh
  • Kwid 1.0 RxT(O) AMT – Rs. 4.32 lakh

2. Maruti Suzuki Ignis

The latest offering from India’s largest carmaker – the Maruti Suzuki Ignis – is the first-ever car in India that has dedicatedly been designed and marketed for youngsters. This makes it a tough contender in our list of best cars for college students. The Ignis comes with Maruti’s trusted 1.2-litre petrol and 1.3-litre diesel engines, both of which can be opted with either a 5-speed manual or a 5-speed AMT gearbox.

Then there is the feature list – dual airbags and ABS with EBD are standard across the model range. The car comes with a 2-DIN music system in the Delta and Zeta variants, while the top-end model gets a very, very modern 7-inch touchscreen system with Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, MirrorLink and reverse camera assist.

The Ignis is a contemporary design. It comes with a boxy front with a single frame grille, vertical nose and squarish headlamps. The side profile is characterised by a thick C-pillar and 15-inch black alloy wheels, which are available with the Zeta and Alpha trim levels. Additionally, the top-end Alpha trims also get LED projector headlamps, DRLs and automatic climate control.

Keeping in mind this feature distribution, the Zeta and Apha variants make a good buy for an average college student. Moreover, the Ignis comes with various customization options (explained here) which can be really enticing for college goers as it gives the opportunity to add your own personal flavour to the car’s exteriors and interiors.

Prices (ex-showroom, Delhi)

  • Ignis Zeta Petrol MT – Rs. 5.75 lakh
  • Ignis Zeta Petrol AMT – Rs. 6.30 lakh
  • Ignis Alpha Petrol MT – Rs. 6.69 lakh
  • Ignis Zeta Diesel MT – Rs. 6.91 lakh
  • Ignis Zeta Diesel AMT – Rs. 7.46 lakh
  • Ignis Alpha Diesel MT – Rs. 7.80 lakh

3. Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza

Another Maruti Suzuki product that appeals to the youngsters! We Indian customers love our crossovers, and when the country’s largest car maker introduced its first offering in the compact SUV segment, it was bound to succeed. And that is exactly what followed! The Vitara Brezza is currently one of the best-selling crossovers in India, and is also the leader in the compact SUV segment.

The Vitara is also the perfect car for youngsters. It gets a clean front design characterised by projector headlamps and LED DRLs on the top-end model. The Vitara Brezza also gets a higher ground clearance and body cladding to give it SUV-ish looks. Further, Maruti is offering dual-tone colour options with the car that give it enticing appeal, helping it to clearly stand out from the crowd of vehicles.

Powering options with the Vitara Brezza include the 1.3-litre DDiS engine that churns out 89 BHP and 200 Nm of torque. The engine is mated to a 5-speed manual gearbox which transmits power to the front wheels. ARAI mileage is rated at 24.31 km/l.

Thanks to the car’s SUV-like looks, the Vitara Brezza can surely add a lot of persona to your character, especially during your college life. Its compact dimensions make it the ideal city runabout, while the SUV stance and higher ground clearance makes it a perfect car for your occasional road trips with friends.

Based on the feature distribution, a college goer can opt for the ZDi or the ZDi+ models of the Vitara Brezza.

Prices (ex-showroom, Delhi)

  • Vitara Brezza ZDi – Rs. 8.71 lakh
  • Vitara Brezza ZDi+ – Rs. 9.70 lakh


4. Ford EcoSport

Yes, we now this is yet another compact SUV. But believe us, if you are a college student searching for a new car around Rs. 8 lakh, there is no sense in opting for compact sedans or premium hatchbacks. While the compact sedan segment is clearly a family oriented marketplace, the premium hatchbacks don’t offer much value and character for their price. On the other hand, compact SUVs are bigger, have better road presence and even offer more space on the inside. This is why it is the only segment that offers two nice cars for college students in India – the Vitara Brezza and this – the Ford EcoSport.

The EcoSport can easily be termed as the founder of the compact SUV craze in India. Though it was preceded by the Mahindra Quanto, the EcoSport’s launch was the event that imbibed a clear inclination of customer preferences towards the compact SUV segment. Its butch looks, good build quality and features on offer ensured that it soon became the best-seller of the American automaker.

For college students, the EcoSport offers something they just can’t resist – vibrance. With a large hexagonal grille, upright front fascia, beefed up wheel arches with black cladding and that massive 15-inch spare wheel mounted at the tailgate; everything about the EcoSport’s design screams panache and aggressiveness. This is a mixture of characteristics that every college going student wants to be associated with. As a result, the EcoSport can be an ideal choice.

Ford offers its compact SUV with a wide range of engine options: a 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol, a 1.5-litre naturally aspirated petrol and a 1.5-litre turbo diesel. Out of these, the 1.5-litre can be opted with a 6-speed automatic gearbox, while all others come with a 5-speed manual.

The best part about the EcoSport is that it is feature loaded across all variants. The basic Ambiente, Trend and Trend+ come with a music system (FM, AM, USB) connected with 4 speakers and feature Bluetooth connectivity. The higher Titanium and Titanium+ trims get CD support, 2 additional tweeters and a 3.5-inch multi-function screen. As a result, depending on your budget and requirements, you can opt for basically any model of the Ford EcoSport.

Prices (ex-showroom, Delhi)

  • 1.5L Petrol Ambiente MT – Rs. 7.11 lakh
  • 1.5L Petrol Trend MT – Rs. 7.86 lakh
  • 1.5L Petrol Titanium MT – Rs. 9.02 lakh
  • 1.5L Petrol Titanium AT – Rs. 9.92 lakh
  • 1.0L Petrol Trend+ MT – Rs. 8.56 lakh
  • 1.0L Petrol Titanium+ MT – Rs. 9.69 lakh
  • 1.5L Diesel Ambiente MT – Rs. 7.76 lakh
  • 1.5L Diesel Trend MT – Rs. 8.46 lakh
  • 1.5L Diesel Trend+ MT – Rs. 8.86 lakh
  • 1.5L Diesel Titanium MT – Rs. 9.62 lakh
  • 1.5L Diesel Titanium+ MT – Rs. 9.99 lakh

5. Mahindra Thar

If you have reached this point in our article, it is highly likely that you didn’t like the other 4 options we mentioned above. If that’s true, no worries! Because our last proposal is for those who like to stand out from others. The Mahindra Thar needs no introduction. It is Mahindra’s most modern Jeep on offer in India. And if you are a college student, you might have dreamt of going to college with your friends or girlfriend in an open Jeep. If you do have such aspirations from your next new car for college, the Mahindra Thar is the right option to go for.

We won’t talk about features or specifications in case of the Thar, as all of it doesn’t really matter. The crux of the equation is, buy yourself a Thar and then customize it to your own taste. Remove the soft top, install thicker tyres with black alloy wheels, equip it with chubby roll bars and put install a high-quality music system that can send chills down the spine. There is no other vehicle in the market that offers such vast customization abilities.

The Thar can be opted in any variant and any colours. Just make sure that you know what you are going to do with it before placing your money on the Thar.

Prices (ex-showroom, Delhi)

  • Thar DI 2WD – Rs. 6.18 lakh
  • Thar DI 4WD – Rs. 6.70 lakh
  • Thar CRDe – Rs. 8.89 lakh

So here it is! Our comprehensive list of the best cars for college students in India. If you can think of any other option, let us know in the comments section below!

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