The Maruti Suzuki Baleno has been the market leader in the premium hatchback segment since some time now. The hatchback rivals the likes of the Hyundai Elite i20 and the Honda Jazz in its segment. However, it has continuously beaten the competition through the Elite i20 has come close enough to bite its heels on some occasions. Talking of numbers, Maruti Suzuki sold 16,717 units of the Baleno in January 2019. The Hyundai Elite i20, on the other hand, had a sales figure of 13,290 in the same time period. So what makes the Baleno such a strong seller in the segment? Here are a few reasons which answer that question.
Loaded with Features
Maruti has equipped the Baleno with a host of features that make it one of the best in the segment. The feature list on the car includes keyless entry and start, rear parking sensors with camera, automatic headlamps and follow me lamps, audio controls on the steering wheel, automatic climate control, touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto along with many other features. Maruti has equipped all the variants of the car with ABS+EBD and dual airbags. The Suzuki Connect can be used to track the vehicle and know the status of the equipment in it. All this makes the Baleno a very good choice in the segment if one wants a feature rich car.
Something for everyone
The Maruti Suzuki Baleno comes with a multitude of engine and transmission options spread across various trim levels. The company offers the Baleno in nearly all possible combinations. There is an automatic petrol CVT variant, a manual diesel variant, a petrol manual variant along with an RS variant targeted at enthusiasts. This, in turn, makes it easier for the customers to have the type of Baleno they want without much head butting.
Spacious and comfortable
With a length of 3,995 mm and a width of 1,745 mm, the Baleno is a big car by hatchback standards. This means it has enough cabin space for five adults to sit comfortably. The wheelbase of the Baleno measures 2,520mm, which again hints towards its huge cabin space. The extremely comfortable and roomy rear seats of the Baleno are the first choice for people who want rear seat luxury in a hatchback or travel with family often. The front seats too fit snugly and are comfortable for sitting over a long distance.
Affordable and fuel efficient
The Maruti Suzuki is both affordable as well as fuel efficient, two factors which affect the sales of cars in India the most. The base variant of the car starts at Ts. 5.45 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) which is a bit cheaper than the Hyundai Elite i20. The Baleno is extremely frugal too and the diesel version of the Baleno returns an ARAI certified fuel efficiency of 27.39 km/l. The petrol engine, on the other hand, returns an ARAI certified fuel efficiency figure of 21.4 km/l, which is quite high for a petrol-powered premium hatchback. With the ‘Kitna deti hai’ question answered for pretty nicely by Maruti, people buy it with a peace of mind factor.
Tempting for midsize hatchback buyers like Swift
This is another aspect that has led to the soaring sales of the Baleno. Many of the prospective buyers that are in the market for midsize hatchbacks like the Ford Figo or the Maruti Suzuki Swift get tempted to buy the bigger and better Baleno. The cost of this upgrade is also not much considering the significant amount of benefits one gets. The base model of the Maruti Suzuki Swift starts at Rs. 4.99 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi) while the base model of the Baleno costs Rs. 5.45 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi). As obvious, there is a difference of only about Rs. 45,000 between the base variant of both these cars. Therefore, many buyers make the jump onto the premium hatchback bandwagon and buy the Baleno.
Trusted and cheap aftersales service
This has been a strength of Maruti Suzuki for long. The company has established a large number of dealers and service centres across the country, making it very accessible to all. Being a Nexa product, the Baleno needs to be serviced at Nexa outlets only but as the hatchback still shares a lot of parts with the rest of the models, one can turn to any Maruti service station in case of an emergency. Also, the parts and service cost of the vehicle is quite cheap which makes way for a hassle-free ownership experience.