Autoportal.com tested Maruti Suzuki India’s by far the most stylishly designed premium hatchback, ‘Baleno’ is here priced at Rs 4.99 for the range starting variant.
Gurgaon, Haryana, October 27, 2015 — Autoportal.com tested Maruti Suzuki India’s by far the most stylishly designed premium hatchback, ‘Baleno’ is here priced at Rs 4.99 for the range starting variant. Positioned above the flagship model Swift, Baleno in all senses is a potential rival to Honda’s rebooted Jazz and the beautiful Hyundai i20. Possessing a larger stance than Swift, Baleno has taken cues from the former but it has an individuality of its own that is visible in the improved interior quality, richer equipment list and a modish rear end.
In AutoPortal expert’s view, Maruti Suzuki India has added a couple of new elements in the premium hatchback that separate it from the other usual compact sized Marutis. The face albeit is adorned by the very Maruti recognizing V-shape grille, even the head lights are afflated by Swift, but they are not as long as in Swift. Lower bumper has wider air dams and even the fog lamp housings are designed unlike other Marutis. For that matter even the side profile bears no alikeness with other Maruti cars. Rear is the highlight of the hatch and that is what sets it apart from rivals.
Interior space is good especially in front; even the luggage storage space is generous. But the material quality is not very premium; the buttons and dials fitted inside are similar to the ones seen in other Marutis. However, the good news is that MSI has stuffed the car well with equipments such as voice command system, navigation system, Bluetooth, Aux-In, steering mounted controls, Apple’s CarPlay interface in the range topping variant etc. Even the blue lit instrument cluster comes out as a refreshing bit inside the otherwise dark cabin.
There are two engine options available on the premium hatch including the 1.2 litre K Series petrol engine and Fiat sourced 1.3 litre DDiS diesel motor. The petrol motor makes a healthy 83.1 Bhp along with 11.7 kgm of torque. Diesel motor on the other hand generates 73.9 Bho and 19.3 kgm of torque. A five-speed transmission is mated to both the engines and a CVT is also on offer on the Delta variant. Fuel economy for petrol manual, CVT and diesel versions is imposing; especially the diesel motor which promises claimed economy of above 27 kmpl.
Pricing is very aggressive and this could very well work in the favour of hatchback. On the whole, the second product from MSI’s clan in the premium range is unlike the cliché Maruti products we have seen so far. Unlike the other compact hatchbacks in its product portfolio, this one is a true contender in B segment.
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