The country’s largest carmaker, Maruti Suzuki India Limited, has upgraded its highly popular premium hatchback, the Baleno, with a safety update. The car now comes with a three-point seatbelt for the rear center passenger. Currently, Maruti Suzuki has given this update only to the Baleno, but it is believed that more cars will soon follow suit. Nitin Gadkari, the Minister of Road Transport and Highways, can be credited with this safety update as he recently announced that all front-facing passengers in all new vehicles must adhere to a three-point seatbelt. This initiative is part of Nitin Gadkari’s commitment to reduce road fatalities in India by half by the end of 2025.
Earlier this year, in February, the company provided the Baleno with a mid-life upgrade with the new 2023 model year. The company added the safety features of ESP (Electronic Stability Program) and hill hold as standard in the premium hatchback Baleno for the 2023 model year.
The base Sigma variant of the 2023 Baleno comes with additional features like rear power windows and automatic climate control, which were previously only available from the Delta variant onwards. However, the company still does not offer the base trim of this hatchback with an infotainment system. The current list of features in the Sigma variant includes tilt-adjustable steering, dual front airbags, ABS with EBD, and reverse parking sensors.
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In terms of the powertrain, the Sigma variant comes with a 1.2-litre K12C DualJet petrol engine, like the other variants of Baleno, which produces 90 PS of maximum power and 113 Nm of maximum torque. However, unlike the other variants, which are available with both the transmission options of a 5-speed manual and a 5-speed AMT, the Sigma variant is only available with the manual transmission option.
If you are in the market to buy the Maruti Suzuki premium hatchback Baleno, Cartoq recently analyzed all the available variants of the Baleno and found that the most value for money (VFM) variant of the Maruti Suzuki Baleno is the Delta variant, which is priced at Rs 7.45 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi).
In comparison to the base variant, the Baleno Sigma, which is priced at Rs 6.61 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi), the most VFM variant has some extra features, including steering mounted controls and automatic ORVM (the base variant has manual) as driver assistance features. The Baleno Delta also features USB ports as an extra convenience feature. Among gadgets, the Baleno Delta also has a 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system with navigation support and voice-activated controls. Additionally, it has an OEM audio system with 4 speakers.
Meanwhile, compared to the top-spec Alpha AMT variant, which is priced at Rs 9.88 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi), the top-end variant has some additional features over the most VFM variant, such as 6 airbags (the Baleno Delta has 2), including knee/curtain airbags, electronic stability control (ESC), and follow-me-home headlights among safety features.
In other Maruti Suzuki news, the company recently introduced the electronic stability program (ESP) as a standard safety feature across its entire range of models as well. The introduction of this new feature is in compliance with the BS6 stage-II real driving emission norms, effective from April 1, 2023. Maruti Suzuki models now offer enhanced traction while accelerating and braking with the inclusion of this safety feature.
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