Maruti Suzuki will finally replace its ageing 4-speed torque converter automatic transmission with a new 6-speed unit. It would also be a torque converter gearbox. The new transmission would be offered on the 2022 Brezza, XL6 Facelift and Ertiga Facelift.
The 4-speed torque converter has been used by the manufacturer since 2003. It debuted on their Grand Vitara XL7 that came with a V6 petrol engine. The transmission lacks manual shifting or sports mode and misses out on gears. Nowadays, most manufacturers are using a 6-speed unit, some are even using a 7-speed unit for the dual-clutch automatic transmissions.
It makes sense for Suzuki to opt for a torque converter over a dual-clutch unit or a CVT unit because torque converters have been on sale for the longest in the automotive industry. They are known for their reliability. So, there is not a huge risk for the manufacturer because it is unlikely that something major will go wrong with the new transmission.
Having said that the current 4-speed automatic transmission is one of the smoothest in the segment, it is just that it lacks few features when compared to the competitors. The new 6-speed auto should improve shift times, it should also respond quickly and you would also be able to take manual control of the gears. We have already seen that the upcoming new-gen Brezza would come with paddle shifters mounted behind the steering wheel.
The 6-speed unit is expected to be the same one that is doing duty on the 2022 S-Cross. Because the new transmission has more gears, it should also help in improving fuel efficiency. There would also be mild-hybrid technology that will further help in improving fuel economy. Moreover, the new gearbox would also help the vehicles in meeting the new Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE 2) rules that will be applied in April 2022.
Models that would get the new gearbox
The new gearbox will debut with the Ertiga Facelift which is expected to be launched in March. It does not get any major changes. The only cosmetic change that we were able to spot was the new grille. With the new gearbox, the prices of the automatic variants would increase. Having said that the 5-speed manual gearbox would stay on sale.
Then there is the 2022 Brezza which will no longer get the “Vitara” moniker. The new compact SUV is expected to get unveiled in April. The manufacturer has heavily redesigned the exterior and the interior of the Brezza. This happened because the compact SUV now felt old when compared to other rivals.
Then the manufacturer will launch the XL6 facelift in the Indian market. There would be some changes to the exterior and the interior of the MPV. This will help in differentiating it even more than the Ertiga. Moreover, Maruti Suzuki might increase the alloy wheel size which will further improve the stance of the XL6. There are also rumours, that the XL6’s facelift might come with a 7-seater option.
Now, we are left with the S-Cross and the Ciaz. As of now, no facelift or update is planned for both vehicles. However, it makes sense for the manufacturer to eventually update the automatic gearbox of these vehicles. Maruti Suzuki might simply update the gearbox and do not make any other changes to the vehicles.
Via Autocar India