Maruti Suzuki is putting together a sub-4 meter crossover on the Baleno platform. The crossover is slated for launch next year, and Maruti Suzuki has already begun road testing the new vehicle. While there’s speculation that the YTB could get a coupe crossover form factor, a more conventional crossover form factory is more likely given the Indian market’s preference for SUVs. Obviously, more ground clearance is always welcome and this is almost a given. Styling is also likely to be completely unique, giving the buyer a brand new car rather than a Baleno-on-stilts. Here’s a speculative render that shows what the Baleno Cross – codenamed the YTB – could look like.
Video courtesy SRKDesign
As the render indicates, the Baleno Cross is expected to borrow styling elements from Maruti Suzuki’s newest SUV – the Grand Vitara. The bold front end, squared off wheel arches, body cladding all around, revised alloy wheel design and roof rails are various elements that give the Baleno Cross the crossover look. In terms of positioning, the Baleno Cross could sit in between its hatchback sibling and the Maruti Brezza sub-4 meter compact SUV.
Also read: 10 FORGOTTEN ‘Station Wagons’ Of India: Tata Indigo Marina to Maruti Baleno Altura
A sub-4 meter length means that Maruti Suzuki will be tailored to make best use of the Indian government’s excise duty benefits conferred on small cars. This entails a petrol engine displacing under 1.2 liters, which could probably be the same K-Series unit that’s offered on the Baleno. Adding a strong hybrid would make this motor as efficient as a diesel motor. The Brezza’s 1.5 liter is more or less ruled out for the new crossover given the additional excise duty this option entails.
Another engine option for the new Maruti Suzuki Baleno crossover will be the 1 liter-3 cylinder turbocharged petrol engine that used to be offered on the regular Baleno hatchback. This motor was good for 110 PS-170 Nm on the Baleno RS, and a similar state of tune would make the crossover powerful enough for most people. Expect both manual and automatic gearbox options on the new crossover. A front wheel drive layout will be standard though. CNG and electric powertrains could also be in the works.
Also read: 10 DC Design cars & how they look in the REAL world: Maruti Swift to Mahindra XUV500
Maruti Suzuki is quite bullish on SUVs. India’s largest automaker plans to claw back market share with a slew of new SUVs. While the Baleno Cross is one such SUV, other new models from Maruti Suzuki includes the Grand Vitara – launching next month – and the long wheelbase version of the Jimny off roader – slated for a 2023 launch. We expect both the India-spec Jimny and the Baleno Cross to be shown at the 2023 Auto Expo. Both vehicles are likely to be launched next year.