Japanese automaker Suzuki unveiled the 2015 Vitara SUV at this year’s Paris Motor Show. The SUV is based on the iV4 concept and will slot in below the Grand Vitara in Suzuki’s global line up. Suzuki’s Indian subsidiary Maruti will also launch the 2015 Vitara in India. However, the launch time frame for the 2015 Vitara in India is quite some time away, what with FinancialExpress reporting a 2018 launch for the new Suzuki SUV. By then, the 2015 Vitara is likely to have seen a mid life makeover and it could well be that the Indian market will get the facelifted Vitara SUV in 2018.
The Vitara name plate, which first made its debut in 1988 has been revived after no less than 16 years. All along, the Grand Vitara, which has replaced the original, smaller Vitara SUV, was flying the Suzuki flag in the global SUV market. With the relaunch of the compact, 2015 Vitara, Suzuki now has another global SUV option for buyers around the world. The Grand Vitara will continue to remain in production. The new Vitara will be produced at Suzuki’s Hungarian factory in Magyar, with European sales to begin next year.
The 2015 Vitara is a five seat SUV that gets a slew of new features. A panoramic sun roof with twin glass surfaces, radar based emergency braking, ALLGRIP all wheel drive technology that comes with multiple modes such as lock, auto, snow and sport, disc brakes on all four wheels, adaptive cruise control and a monocoque body shell made of high tensile steel are a few of the many highlights of the 2015 Vitara. Two engines are on offer, a 1.6 liter petrol (120 Bhp-156 Nm) and a 1.6 liter turbo diesel (120 Bhp-320 Nm).
Five speed manual and six speed automatic transmissions are offered with the petrol powered models while the diesel burner gets a single, 6 speed maual gearbox. To justify its SUV tag, the Vitara gets a 185 mm ground clearance and rides on 17 inch alloy wheels shod with 215/55 rubber. The SUV’s 1 8.2° approach angle and a 28.2° departure angle should give it decent cred off the road. All things considered, the 2015 Vitara is an SUV meant for light trails and uneven surfaces rather than a full fledged off-roader like say a Jeep Wrangler.
Local manufacture is the key to success in India and to make the Vitara a success, Maruti Suzuki would be keen on turning up localization levels. The 2015 Vitara could rival the Mahindra XUV500 crossover in terms of price and positioning as the new SUV essentially sits below the Grand Vitara. Maruti Suzuki’s next launch in the SUV space is the S-Cross crossover. The S-Cross is expected to carry a sub-10 lakh rupee price tag, to rub shoulders with the likes of the Renault Duster and the Nissan Terrano SUVs. In light of this, the Vitara will be positioned in between the S-Cross and the Grand Vitara.
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