The upcoming crash safety norms and more stringent BS-VI emission standards could slow down the iconic Maruti Alto’s stellar run come 2020, but the automaker is not the one to rest on its laurels. Mint reports that Maruti is currently working on a new entry-level small car codenamed Y1K which is slated to be introduced in 2020.
Though it will be positioned a notch above the Alto whose mechanical roots trace back to the 800, we expect the new car to eventually take the baton forward into the new era. So, for all practical purposes, the upcoming small car can be considered as the next gen Maruti Alto.
The new hatchback is currently being developed at Maruti’s R&D facility in Rohtak. The product would employ a stronger platform with added features like ABS and airbags to meet the new safety regulations. The new petrol engines (0.8L and 1.0L) would incorporate modern technology to cut down on emissions.
In other words, the Y1k will aim to preserve the original Alto’s core appeal while being far more superior in every other department. Of course, keeping the cost in check would be the biggest challenge but if any OEM could pull it off, it would be Maruti Suzuki.
The Maruti Y1K would equip the automaker to launch a much stronger assault on today’s popular cars in the segment like the Renault Kwid and Tata Tiago. It will also have the upcoming Hyundai Santro in its crosshairs. It’s too early to speculate about the styling but expect the dimensions to be compact.
The rural automotive market is expected to witness a significant growth in the coming years and an all-new affordable small car could be the right product for the scenario.