It has been 16 years since the first Maruti Alto was launched. At that time, the car was priced at INR 2.99 lakh for the base model, and surprisingly it costs about the same today as well. In fact, its price is lesser as compared to what it was in the year 2000. Today, the base model of Maruti Alto costs INR 2.94 lakh!
Maruti Alto was not a sales hit right from the start. In fact, during its initial years, Maruti Alto sales were far lesser than the likes of Hyundai Santro, Maruti Zen and Tata Indica – first two have been discontinued, while the third one is considered as the king of taxi segment. The best selling car in India that time was Maruti 800, which has now been discontinued.
Sales of Maruti Alto started picking up in 2003-04, when the company launched aggressive marketing campaign across India. They also reduced the price considerably. This got Maruti Alto the attention it needed from entry-level car buyers. Suddenly, sales picked up, and the next year, Alto posted a sales increase of a massive 135%. In 2005, with sales of 1.26 lakh units, Maruti Alto overtook Maruti 800 as India’s best selling car. After that, there was no looking back.
Initially offered only with an 800 cc engine, Maruti Alto got a more powerful 1.0-liter engine option in the form of Alto K10 in the year 2010. This added to its growing sales figures. In 2012, finally after 12 years, Maruti Suzuki updated the Alto 800 to a new generation. As both Alto 800 and K10 are built on the same platform with similar design cues, k10 got the new gen update in 2014.
Maruti Alto sales are not only noteworthy in India, but also in the world. In the last five years, it has been the best-selling car in the world for three times.
With the likes of Renault Kwid, Datsun Go, and upcoming Tata Tiago in the market, sales of Maruti Alto no longer grows at a pace like before. Will Maruti Alto sales continue to grow, or will they decline owing to competition from new rivals, only time will tell.