This was a decision just waiting to happen. Maruti is apparently stopping production of the Zen Estilo in the next couple of months as sales are just not the way the company wanted it to be.
The Maruti Zen Estilo and the Maruti Wagon-R are very similar, and not just in pricing, where the Estilo is priced about Rs. 5,000 or so below the Maruti Wagon-R. Yet, the Maruti Wagon-R clocks over 10,000 cars a month and is the most popular hatchback in its segment, while its cousin the Zen Estilo sells only about 1,000 cars a month (it sold 6,103 cars in the past six months compared to 58,800 units of the Wagon-R).
A report by Oncars suggests that sources in Maruti have confided to them that the car is being axed from the production line. The Maruti Zen Estilo is the old MR Wagon from Japan, which is itself based on the previous Wagon-R platform. The components used in both the Wagon-R and the Estilo are largely the same, from the 1-litre K-series petrol engine, transmission, suspension components and some electricals. A spokesperson from Maruti declined to comment on this.
Axing the Zen Estilo would also mean the end of an iconic brand – the Zen, whose original “jelly-bean” avatar is a much sought after classic now. Maruti tried to rekindle it with the Estilo, but buyers just didn’t find the Estilo as appealing as the original Zen (MH 410), which was a very popular car through the 1990s, up to the early 2000s. Also see: Buyers’ checklist for used Maruti Wagon-R
Shelving the Zen Estilo will free up production capacity for Maruti, which it can then use to ramp up Wagon-R, Ritz and Ertiga production – vehicles for which there is good demand, beside the best-selling Alto, Swift and Dzire.
If you were planning on buying a Maruti Zen Estilo, this would be a good time to push for some hard discounts on the car. The car itself is a good buy – as it is mechanically similar to the Wagon-R, and spares won’t be a problem for it. Also read: Maruti launches face-lifted Wagon-R