Maruti launches Suzuki Kizashi CVT and manual

Maruti today launched the Suzuki Kizashi in two variants. An automatic CVT priced at Rs.  17.5 lakh and a six-speed manual version priced at Rs. 16.5 lakh, ex-showroom Delhi.

The Kizashi will be fully imported from Suzuki Japan and comes in three colors – a black, a white and a silver-grey. Read our full road test of the automatic Kizashi.

You can book a Kizashi right now by paying just Rs 50,000. The company said that deliveries would begin in March 2011.

Maruti launches Suzuki Kizashi CVT and manual
Shinzo Nakanishi, MD & CEO, Maruti Suzuki India and Mayank Pareek, Executive Director at the launch of the Suzuki Kizashi

“The Kizashi is a major step forward for Maruti Suzuki. With the launch of this luxurious sporty sedan, Maruti Suzuki is able to offer an international car to top-end customers in India. I am delighted to note that most previews by auto experts here have been positive, appreciating the Kizashi’s stylish looks, sporty performance and luxurious feel. We are fully geared to delight customers in a segment where we have been absent so far,” Maruti Suzuki India managing director and CEO, Shinzo Nakanishi said at the launch.

Mayank Pareek, executive director, Maruti Suzuki India Limited did not commit to a sales target for the Kizashi. Says Pareek, “This segment accounts for only 2.8 percent of the Indian passenger car market in India. We’re offering a car in the A4 segment with A5 features, that’s what we always do.”

The price of the Kizashi is an introductory price, meaning it’s been deliberately kept in check to attract buyers trading up from an SX4. However, it could come at the cost of some profitability to Maruti. “One needs to look at Maruti Suzuki, the company, as a whole and not at profit margins on individual products. As a company we are profitable,” says Pareek.

It’s a car that’s well-suited to people who love driving as it is quite sporty. The car is powered by a DOHC, 16-valve, 2393 cc petrol engine that puts out 176 bhp of power at 6,000 rpm and 23 Kgm of torque at 4,000 rpm. This engine is mated to a six-speed manual transmission or a CVT, depending on the variant. The CVT also comes with paddle-shifters with pre-selected ratios, making it emulate a manual transmission when needed.

Maruti claims an overall mileage of 12.53 kmpl for the CVT and 12.45 kmpl for the six-speed manual version.

In terms of looks, the Kizashi has a faint resemblance to a grown up SX4. Its styling cues are distinctly Suzuki, with the honeycomb grille and angled headlamps. The Kizashi looks sporty when viewed from up front, with the twin projector headlamps and lower spoiler with integrated fog lamps. The large 17-inch alloy wheels and low-profile 215/55 tyres give the car a sporty stance and fill up the wheel-wells nicely.

The design is curvy with a subtle crease on the lower part of the car. At the rear, the tail lamps wrap around from the rear fenders, rounding off the design. The boot lid has a tiny spoiler with a stop lamp built into it and is slightly bulky, but goes well with the overall design. A noticeable feature at the rear is the twin exhausts with chrome covers, giving this a car a sporty look.

Some of the features that come as standard on the Kizashi include keyless entry, push-button ignition, fully electric front seats with memory settings, electric folding mirrors and leather upholstery. All the plastics used in the Kizashi are of superior quality, compared to all the other Maruti products till date, and have a soft touch about them.

Because the car has initially been built for the European market, the switchgear around the steering is the opposite of what’s on the other Maruti products – headlights are on the left stalk and wipers on the right. The car comes equipped with six airbags, traction control and ABS with EBD. The car also got the highest safety rating in the 2010 U.S. NCAP testing.

The car has plenty of storage space. There are covered cup holders next to the handbrake in the centre console and twin storage under the armrest that also has a power socket to charge a phone. The glove box is not very deep, but what’s interesting is how everything opens with a soft, almost hydraulic, touch.

The 60:40 split, folding rear seat has a flip down centre arm rest that has two cup holders. It also features a little door to access the boot from within the car, to retrieve small items when on the move, or to throw in an umbrella or walking stick. The boot is fairly large and has some nice tie-down points to keep the luggage in place.

Maruti will initially import the Kizashi, but may consider making the car in India at a later date depending on demand.

Maruti launches Suzuki Kizashi CVT and manual
The Suzuki Kizashi is fun to drive

Technical Specifications
Maruti Suzuki Kizashi 2.4 Automatic


Engine 2393 cc, DOHC, 16-valve, petrol
Power 176 bhp @ 6,000 rpm
Torque 23 Kgm @ 4,000 rpm
Transmission CVT with paddle shifts, stalk shift (emulates a manual)
Length 4650 mm
Width 1821 mm
Height 1480 mm
Wheelbase 2700 mm
Ground clearance 145 mm
Kerb weight 1,510 kg
Tank capacity 63 litres
Boot capacity 460 litres
Front legroom 1059 mm
Rear legroom 904 mm
Tyres 215/55 R 17 (on alloys)
Suspension front McPherson strut
Suspension rear Multi-link independent
Brakes front Vented disc
Brakes rear Solid disc