Maruti Suzuki has been working on a mild hybrid version of the Baleno premium hatchback, and we brought you the first spy video of the car being tested on Indian roads. Now, new information about the Maruti Baleno Mild Hybrid has surfaced. ACI reports that the Baleno Mild Hybrid will use a 1.2 liter DualJet petrol engine in addition to an electric motor that offers a torque boost on demand. This petrol engine, known as the K12C unit globally, offers better combustion by having two injectors per cylinder compared with the more conventional one injector per cylinder.
This layout allows fuel to be burnt more efficiently in the combustion chamber, thus increasing fuel efficiency and decreasing tail pipe emissions. Considering that India will move to a much stricter emission norms regime called Bharat Stage 6 (BS6) in April 2019, the 1.2 liter DualJet mild hybrid petrol engine’s arrival in the Baleno comes at just the right moment. Power and torque figures are also expected to be higher on the new engine. While the Baleno’s K12B petrol engine makes 82 Bhp-113 Nm, the DualJet motor is expected to output about 90 Bhp-120 Nm, which means that the car will feel more peppier.
Now, the K12B petrol engine – a smooth and rev-happy 4 cylinder, naturally aspirated unit, has been a staple for many years across multiple best selling Maruti cars. The Maruti Baleno, Dzire, Swift, Ignis and even the WagonR operate with engine currently. Given the fact that all these cars need to comply with the tigher emission norms come 2020, the DualJet petrol engine is likely to be offered on the Maruti Swift, Dzire, WagonR and Ignis as well. These cars are also expected to get mild hybrid layouts. Better fuel efficiency, pick-up and lower emissions are likely to be the result of a mass adoption of the Dualjet petrol engine with a mild hybrid layout.
Coming back to the Maruti Baleno, the car is India’s best selling premium hatchback that competes with the likes of the Hyundai Elite i20 and the Honda Jazz. The Baleno received a facelift recently, and the car’s prices now start from Rs. 5.55 lakhs, ex-showroom Delhi. The Baleno is offered with 3 engine options – a naturally aspirated 1.2 liter-4 cylinder K-Series petrol with 82 Bhp-113 Nm, a 1 liter-3 cylinder turbocharged BoosterJet petrol with 101 Bhp-150 Nm, and a 1.3 liter Fiat Multijet turbocharged diesel with 74 Bhp-190 Nm. All three engines get 5 speed manual gearboxes as standard while the 1.2 liter petrol gets a CVT automatic gearbox as an option.
The Baleno is likely to dump the diesel engine in 2020 as the new emission norms will make diesels another lakh expensive when compared to petrols. This will make diesel engined cars unviable for most car buyers, except perhaps for taxi fleet owners. Like the Baleno, the 2020 models of the Maruti Swift and Dzire are also expected to dump diesel and instead opt for CNG and petrol mild hybrid engines.
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