The Baleno premium hatchback is one of the biggest successes for Maruti Suzuki in recent years. The car’s sales has just crossed the 3 lakh units mark, creating a new record for Maruti in the process. The Baleno is the fastest selling hatchback that Maruti has ever launched in India. The car was first launched in October 2015, and in just over 2 years of time, has managed to cross the 3 lakh sales mark. This means that Maruti has consistently sold 10,000 units of the Baleno each month on an average.
The prime competitor of the Baleno is the Hyundai Elite i20. Other competitors include the Honda Jazz and the Volkswagen Polo GT twins. Needless to say, the Baleno has outsold each one of these cars with thumping margins. In 2017 alone, Maruti sold over 175,000 units of the Baleno, averaging nearly 15,000 sales per month. The Elite i20 – a great seller in itself if looked at in isolation – has managed to sell about 116,000 units in the same period. The Jazz and Polo GT twins are far behind both the Baleno and Elite i20.
The Baleno sold in India is available with three engine options – a 1.2 liter-4 cylinder K-Series petrol engine with 82 Bhp-114 Nm, a 1.3 liter turbocharged diesel engine with 75 Bhp-190 Nm and a 1 liter-3 cylinder BoosterJet turbocharged petrol engine with 101 Bhp-105 Nm. All three engines get 5 speed manual transmissions as standard. The 1.2 liter petrol engine is also available with a CVT automatic gearbox. The Baleno RS is the sportiest car in the line-up, and can do the 0-100 Kph sprint in a little over 10 seconds. Prices of the Baleno start from Rs. 5.26 lakhs.
Sales of the Baleno is likely to come under pressure in the coming months as Maruti will soon launch the all-new, 3rd generation Swift hatchback. Totally restyled, lighter and more feature-filled than the outgoing Swift, the new car also offers unique options (diesel-AMT) that are currently unavailable on the Baleno. A great sibling rivalry is in the making.