It seems that just about everyone with a hatchback and a stretchable platform is churning out compact MPVs. The latest to be stretched is the Suzuki Wagon-R, a car that was showcased at the Indonesian Motor Show recently.
This Wagon-R 3-Row MPV concept is called the Suzuki Karimun Wagon-R 3-Rows Concept and is a sign of things to come. We can’t say we really like the direction or trend evolving here, but looking at how buyers in India too are hankering after space, the Wagon-R MPV could very well make it to production and if Maruti chooses to introduce it here as an entry-level MPV, positioned way below the Ertiga – there does seem to be a market for it. Also see: Honda Mobilio variants and specifications
The Wagon-R 3-Row concept features seven seats in a 2+3+2 arrangement, with the last row bench seats being rather small – more suitable for children than adults. The concept shown at the Indonesian Motor Show didn’t have seat belts in the last row, but that would be mandatory for a production variant. The car shares an identical 2400 mm wheelbase to the current Wagon-R hatchback, and is unaltered right up to the C-pillar. It’s only the rear fender, roof, bumper and floor that have been lengthened with the addition of a third window. The rear hatch and tail-lamps remains the same as the hatchback.
This would make it relatively easy to produce as most of the components for the car would be the same, resulting in cost savings. If Maruti were to take this up, it would come with the same 1-litre K-Series engine. It is unlikely Maruti could offer a dual-fuel set up in this as there is absolutely no boot space with three-rows of seats.
The recently showcased Datsun Go+ also follows the same principle of a hatchback being stretched into an MPV, but staying under 4 metres in length. Only the Honda Brio-based Honda Mobilio that will come in next year won’t conform to the sub-4 metre norm, which is a good thing – as these sub-4 metre MPVs are really cramped for space in the third row, as seen in the Mahindra Quanto! Still, there would be buyers for an MPV like this Wagon-R 3-Row concept. Also read: Datsun Go+ MPV unveiled, next in line for launch