Maruti Baleno which is essentially the production version of Suzuki iK-2 has been previewed again through a set to two official images ahead of its world premiere which is set to take place at Frankfurt Motor Show on September 15.
To be positioned above Swift in its global portfolio, Baleno will be produced in India for global consumption so we expect it to make its sales debut here. In terms of design, the spacious premium hatchback retains the concept’s design lines but settles for a watered down front fascia.
In profile, Baleno attempts to strike a fine balance between a regular compact hatchback and a station wagon. This design approach is expected to offer spacious interior and a voluminous boot.
Underpinned by Suzuki’s new lightweight global compact car platform, Maruti Baleno will derive power from a 1.0-litre three-cylinder BoosterJet turbocharged petrol engine which would offer SHVS mild hybrid system in International markets. Powertrain lineup for India would include the DDiS 200 (1.3-litre MultiJet) diesel engine in its 90 PS tune.
With the premium hatchabck segment witnessing an intense battle of features between Hyundai Elite i20, Honda Jazz and VW Polo, expect Baleno to come prepared. SmartPlay touchscreen infotainment system, standard ABS with EBD, driver side airbag (more airbags on higher variants), reverse parking sensors, automatic climate control, etc., would be in the offing.
Maruti is likely to launch Baleno in the Indian market towards the end of this year with an estimated price range of INR 5 – 7.5 lakhs (ex-showroom). The car would be sold though Maruti Nexa premium outlets.