India’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki is back at the top of the charts again as the automotive giant’s Swift hatchback was voted the Indian Car of the Year (ICOTY) 2019 by an independent jury of 18 automotive journalists. 2019 marked the 14th edition of the ICOTY awards and saw the Maruti Swift beat out seven rivals to claim the prestigious award.
While the Marti Swift came out as the Indian Car of the Year 2019, it faced fierce competition from the new Hyundai Santro which came in second and the Honda Amaze compact sedan which finished in third place once the votes from the 18 jurors were tallied. Other cars that were shortlisted for the award include the Mahindra Marazzo, Maruti Ertiga, Honda CR-V, Mahindra Alturas G4, and Toyota Yaris. Cars were judged on the basis of multiple criteria including practicality, performance, fuel efficiency, design, value for money and their compatibility with Indian road conditions.
The jury that decided the Indian Car of the Year 2019 included 18 members of the automotive media. The 18-member jury panel for ICOTY 2019 included Yogendra Pratap and Rahul Ghosh (Auto Today), Dhruv Behl and Ishan Raghava (Auto X), Aspi Bhathena and Sarmad Kadri (Car India), Sirish Chandran and Aninda Sardar (Evo India), Kartik Ware and Raunak Ajinkya (Motoring World), Abhay Verma and Rohit Paradkar (Overdrive), Girish Karkera and Agasti Kaulgi (Top Gear), Muralidhar Swaminathan (The Hindu Business Line), Hani Musthafa (Flywheel), Pablo Chaterji (Man’s World) and Vikrant Singh (CarWale). Combined together the 18-member jury panel have work experience of nearly 300 years between them.
The Maruti Suzuki Swift was launched in India earlier this year, around a year after it was first introduced to the world by Japanese carmaker Suzuki. The Maruti Suzuki Swift featured a new design which modernised the looks of the previous Swift.
The new-gen 2018 Maruti Swift is based on the carmaker’s HEARTECT platform, which ensured that the new car was a whole lot lighter than before at just 855 kilogrammes. However, despite its lightness, the new platform is a whole lot stiffer as well.
Powering the 2019 Indian Car of the Year Award winner are the same engines that powered the previous generation of the Swift. The 1.2-litre naturally aspirated petrol engine produces 82 Bhp at 6,000 rpm and 113 Nm of torque at 4,200 rpm. The 1.3-litre diesel engine is turbocharged and produces 74 Bhp at 4,000 rpm and 190 Nm of torque at 2,000 rpm. Both engines are paired with either a 5-speed manual gearbox or a 5-speed AMT gearbox.
The Maruti Suzuki Swift was one of the most important launches of the year and considering the popularity of the previous-gen model, the fact that it has become so popular is no surprise. With prices for the Swift starting at Rs 4.99 lakhs, the hatchback offers great value for money.