The competition in the B-Segment hatchback space is stiffer than ever. B+ segment hatchbacks are evolving into more rounded cars and are now offering features that were previously available with only bigger sedans. The Hyundai i20 kickstarted the trend of B+ segment hatchbacks being loaded to the gills with features and creature comforts. Other car makers like Volkswagen and Fiat have followed suit with the likes of the Polo GT twins and the Grande Punto respectively. With the B+ segment evolving at a rapid clip, how can industry leader Maruti Suzuki be left behind.
Although Maruti Suzuki’s Swift and Ritz hatchback together account for over 20,000 monthly units in terms of sales in the B+ segment hatchback space, both cars aren’t class leaders in any particular area. To address this, Maruti Suzuki is putting together the YRA hatchback, a premium offering that will sit above the likes of the Ritz and the Swift, and that will take on rivals such as the next-gen 2015 Hyundai i20 and the all-new 2014 Honda Jazz. The YRA hatchback will be a showcase of Maruti Suzuki’s abilities and it is only fitting that the car be the first Maruti to feature a turbo petrol engine.
According to the FinancialExpress, Maruti Suzuki will plonk in a turbocharged 1 liter-3 cylinder K-Series petrol engine into the YRA as demands for higher fuel efficiency and lower tail pipe emissions are getting shriller than ever. Dubbed the K10C DiCT, the turbo petrol engine will also feature direct injection. The engine is likely to output about 90 Bhp of peak power, with peak torque to be pegged around the 140 Nm mark. The 3 cylinder motor is the latest crop of triple cylinder turbo petrol motors that are becoming commonplace in the car world. India plays host to one in the form of the 1 Liter EcoBoost motor, which powers the Ford EcoSport crossover.
Turbocharging involves the routing of exhaust gases to spin a turbine. The turbine in turn delivers a larger charge to the engine, allowing it to make more power and torque. Due to be better use of exhaust gases, fuel efficiency is boosted and tail pipe emissions are cut back, making turbocharging a very effective tool on modern day petrol engines. Direct injection minimizes fuel wastage due to incomplete combustion, by directly delivering fuel to the combustion chamber. Together, turbocharging and direct injection form a potent mix on petrol powered engines, like they’ve already done on diesel motors.
Although the K10C turbo petrol engine will make its debut on the Maruti Suzuki YRA hatchback, expect more Maruti cars to get this engine in the future, given the tightening emission legislation in India. With the industry bellwether taking to turbo petrol power, the technology seems to be coming of age in India. Other turbo petrol engined offerings in the mass market space include the Fiat Linea T-Jet, the Volkswagen Polo TSI and Vento TSI, and the upcoming Tata Bolt hatchback and Zest compact sedan.