The Baleno badge is back, in a brand new bottle, er package. Maruti Suzuki will launch the Baleno premium B+ segment hatchback on the 26th of October, 2015. NEXA dealers have begun taking bookings already. The media drives are on, and this means plenty of sharp images and juicy details. Want to know little-known details about this hot new car, and see how it’ll look like in real? You’ve got to read on!
So, here’s how it looks, in the flesh.
[Images courtesy TopGearIndia]
That’s a nice stance for a car with a class leading 180 mm ground clearance, isn’t it?
A 1.2 liter petrol K-Series engine with 83 Bhp-115 Nm, and a 1.3 liter Fiat Multijet turbo diesel engine with 74 Bhp-190 Nm. 5 speed manual gearboxes are standard. A CVT automatic gearbox, the first ever that Maruti has ever offered in a car sold in India, will be offered as an option on the petrol variant.
Average kya hai?
An ARAI certified 21.4 Kmpl for the petrol, and 27.39 Kmpl for the diesel. Yes, the Baleno is one of the most fuel efficient hatchbacks sold in the country. It beats its competition, the Elite i20 and Jazz, despite not having a sixth gear.
But how does this car manage to do this?
It’s all in the weight, baby. The Baleno is much larger than the Swift, with dimensions of 3,995 mm in length, 1,745 mm in width, 2,520 mm in wheelbase and 1,500 mm in height. The party trick here is the kerb weight, which at 910 Kgs (top-end petrol) is a full 55 kilograms lower than that of the Swift. The top-end diesel, at 985 Kgs, is 75 Kgs lighter. How did Maruti manage it? A brand new platform, and lighter, high strength steel, says the automaker.
They must have compromised safety?
Calm down. ABS+EBD, standard. Driver and passenger airbags, standard. That makes the Baleno one of the most loaded cars in its class as far as safety equipment goes. In fact, it’s a new benchmark for the premium hatchback segment. Way to go, Maruti Suzuki.
Super light weight plus safety features as standard must mean less equipment, right?
Wrong. The Baleno is decently loaded, for a Maruti Suzuki at least. Considering that this car will be sold through the “premium” NEXA dealership chain, the feature list needs to be long. You get a start-stop button, keyless entry, a reverse parking camera, voice recognition, projector headlamps, LED DRLs, a follow-me-home function for the headlamps, automatic climate control, automatic headlamps, a 4.2 inch TFT speedo display, Apple CarPlay (first-in-class) equipped 7 inch touchscreen infotainment system, GPS navigation, and UV rays resisting glass. This glass cuts down UV rays by up to 85 %. So, that’s a great alternate to sun film.
How are the variants going to be split?
You get 9 variants, 5 in petrol and 4 in diesel.
• Driver+passenger airbags
• ABS + EBD
• Driver seat-belt reminder warning
• Front power windows
• Power steering with tilt function
• AC with heater
• Central locking
• Gear shift indicator
• Rear parcel tray
• Rear wiper with defogger
• Rear parking sensors
• Rear power windows
• Audio with FM/MP3/CD/Bluetooth/AUX/USB
• Steering-mounted audio controls
• Climate control
• Power folding and adjustable wing mirrors with integrated indicators
• 60:40 split rear seat
• Keyless entry
• CVT gearbox option for petrol
• Chromed front grille
• Telescopic function for power steering
• Leather-wrapped steering wheel and gear knob
• Automatic headlamps with follow-me-home function
• 16 inch alloy wheels
• Height adjustable driver’s seat
• Push button start
• Front fog lamps
• Chromed door handles
• Ambient lighting
• 4.2 inch colour TFT multi-information display (MID)
• Projector headlamps
• Reverse camera
• Touchscreen SmartPlay infotainment with Apple CarPlay
• GPS Navigation
• Voice recognition
So, who’s going to be scared of the Baleno?
The best selling Hyundai Elite i20…
And the recently launched Honda Jazz…