Maruti Suzuki Baleno is the best selling premium hatchback of India. Baleno has now clocked more than 9 lakh sales in five and a half years. The premium hatchback was first launched back in October 2015 and since then it has sold 8,08,303 petrol variants and 1,03,866 diesel trims. However, now the Baleno is only offered with two petrol engine options. The Baleno starts from Rs. 5.90 lakhs ex-showroom and goes all the way up to Rs. 9.10 lakhs ex-showroom.
It took 51 months for the hatchback to clock 7 lakh sales while the 8 lakh unit was sold just 10 months later. In total it took 66 months for Baleno to zoom past the 9 lakh mark. In March 2021, alone Maruti Suzuki sold 21,217 units of the premium hatchback. The Baleno is sold only through the Nexa dealerships which is a more premium offering from Maruti Suzuki. It is offered in four variants namely Sigma, Delta, Zeta and Alpha. The Baleno competes against the Toyota Glanza, Honda Jazz, Tata Altroz, Hyundai i20 and the Volkswagen Polo.
Maruti Suzuki offers the Baleno in two 1.2-litre naturally aspirated petrol engines. The K-series 1.2-litre petrol engine puts out 83 PS of max power and a peak torque output of 113 Nm. It is offered with a 5-speed manual gearbox or a CVT automatic gearbox. There is also a 1.2-litre DualJet petrol engine that produces 90 PS of max power and a peak torque output of 113 Nm. It is offered only with a 5-speed manual gearbox but it comes with mild-hybrid technology.
The smart hybrid technology enables the vehicle for idle start/stop system and Maruti Suzuki also says that the additional battery provides a torque-assist function that reduces the load on the engine and improves fuel efficiency. Due to this, the 1.2-litre DualJet engine returns a claimed fuel efficiency of 23.87kmpl. Whereas the K-series petrol engine returns a fuel economy of 21.01 kmpl when paired to the 5-speed manual gearbox and 19.56 kmpl when paired to the CVT automatic transmission.
The Smart Hybrid engine is offered only with the Delta and Zeta variants which are the two mid variants. Whereas the 1.2 K-series engine is offered with all four variants with the CVT automatic gearbox offered only with the Zeta and the Alpha variant.
Maruti Suzuki has also packed the Baleno with a decent feature list. It gets a coloured multi-information display, LED projector headlamps with LED Daytime Running Lamps, LED tail lamps, UV Cut glass, precision-cut alloy wheels, illumination for the glovebox, footwell area and luggage room, auto-folding outside rearview mirrors and reverse parking camera. There is also a push-button to start/stop, multi-function steering wheel, remote keyless entry, automatic headlamps, all power windows, tilt and telescopic adjustment for the steering wheel, automatic climate control, front and rear accessory sockets and adjustable headrests.
Maruti Suzuki also offers a touchscreen infotainment system known as SmartPlay Studio. It comes with Bluetooth, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, voice commands and smartphone connectivity.
For safety equipment, you get an immobilizer, Anti-lock braking system with Electronic Brake Distribution, driver and passenger airbags, dual horn, driver and co-driver seatbelt reminders, reverse parking sensors, high-speed warning and ISOFIX child seat mounts.