Until now, Maruti had the automatic variant of the Baleno in only the Zeta and Delta trim lines, something that people didn’t really like. People wanting the frills of the top end model had to opt for the manual variant. That has now changed with the launch of the Alpha model in CVT guise. Maruti has priced the vehicle at RS 8.34 lakhs, ex-showroom Delhi which is just about a lakh more expensive than the top of the line petrol manual variant and a little bit cheaper than the RS.
The Baleno petrol is powered by a 1.2 liter K-Series engine, which is also on offer on the Swift and the newly launched Ignis and Dzire. The engine produces 83 Bhp and 115 Nm. The automatic transmission is a CVT unit, unlike the AMT that Maruti offers on the rest of the range of vehicles.
With the Alpha variant, customers will now be getting the bi-xenon lamps, the LED DRLs, the Smartplay infotainment system with Apple Car play, Mirrorlink and navigation. For some reason, the vehicle will not be offered with Android Auto, as per the information provided by Maruti which is surprising since the Ignis and the Dzire already come equipped with them.
Maruti now offers the Baleno with 3 automatic variants, something that will surely help boost sales. VW is the only other brand that offers a top of the line variant in automatic trim, in the Polo GT TSI. Honda doesn’t offer it on the Jazz and Hyundai doesn’t offer it on the i20 either, giving the Baleno a huge advantage over its competition.
The Baleno has been a very successful model for the brand, selling close to 10,000 units a month and giving a strong fight to the Hyundai i20. The company has been frequently updating the Baleno with variants and engine options. In March, the company launched the 1.0 liter Boosterjet version of the Baleno, calling it the RS.