New twin Maruti, Toyota midsize SUVs are likely to be equipped with strong hybrid tech and advanced connectivity features
As part of the global collaboration between Suzuki and Toyota, re-badged versions like Glanza (Baleno) and Urban Cruiser (Brezza) have already been launched. In the next stage of evolution of this partnership, Toyota is working on an entirely new midsize SUV that will rival the likes of Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos.
Maruti, Toyota SUV Spied For First Time
While Glanza and Urban Cruiser are manufactured by Maruti and supplied to Toyota, things will be just the opposite this time around. Toyota will be manufacturing the new SUV and its Maruti rebadged version at its facility in Bidadi, Karnataka.
These new SUVs have now been spied testing for the first time. Although both SUVs will share the same platform, they will come with their unique styling across exteriors and interiors. While Toyota version is codenamed D22, Maruti version is internally referred to as YFG.
Maruti-Toyota midsize SUVs will be entirely new and are being built from the ground up. The idea is to offer something truly unique to customers in this highly-competitive segment. Maruti has S-Cross, but it’s hardly able to compete with the likes of Creta and Seltos. New-gen S-Cross is in the works, but it is unlikely to create any significant difference in consumer perceptions.
Even though it doesn’t seem to have any inherent flaws and is actually a well-equipped car, S-Cross has been unable to live-up to the SUV image. Going with a rebadged version of a new Toyota midsize SUV has a higher chance of success.
New Maruti-Toyota SUVs will be using a new architecture that has been derived from a modular platform named DNGA (Daihatsu-sourced). This has been especially developed keeping in mind the specific requirements of emerging markets such as India. It is currently in use with several Toyota and Daihatsu cars in global markets. DNGA is different from TNGA, a premium platform used for cars like Camry.
Maruti-Toyota new midsize SUV powertrain
Maruti cars like Brezza and its rebadged version Urban cruiser are equipped with ‘Smart Hybrid’ mild-hybrid technology. This mild-hybrid system has its usefulness in terms of features like engine start/stop. It also supplies some extra power to the petrol motor wherever required. However, it may not be sufficient to meet the needs of a midsize SUV.
Toyota will be using a strong hybrid system, something similar to the one used with cars like Camry. This hybrid platform allows the vehicle to be propelled by electric power alone for short durations. It can come handy in heavy traffic situations and will also boost fuel economy. A strong hybrid powertrain can be a key USP for Maruti-Toyota in midsize SUV space.
To effectively compete with the likes of Creta and Seltos, new Maruti-Toyota SUVs are likely to pack in a range of advanced features including connectivity tech. Later this year, Maruti will also be launching updated version of Brezza. Glanza and Urban Cruiser will also be updated subsequently. Toyota will also be launching rebadged version of Ertiga later this year.