The Renault Kwid’s disruption of the Indian small car segment is not taken lightly by the incumbents Maruti and Hyundai. The SUV-ish hatchback’s immense success has prompted the other automakers to rethink their small car product strategy.
Speaking to Economic Times, a senior Maruti Suzuki official stated that the design of the next-gen Maruti Alto which is due for 2019 is yet to be frozen for India but clearly a crossover body style is being looked at.
Maruti will soon launch the Ignis crossover hatchback in a segment above the Alto to rival the Mahindra KUV100. A similar approach for the next gen Alto’s body style is expected. In order for Maruti to give the Kwid a run for its money, the next gen Alto has to be locally engineered (to keep the development costs in check), heavily localized (to keep the production costs in check) and very light (to arrive at impressive fuel economy and performance).
Newly launched Renault Kwid has managed to eat over 20% of the market share in the segment, with monthly sales averaging to over 10,000 units. On the other hand, Maruti Alto’s sales have declined ever since the Kwid was introduced.
The new Maruti Alto will also be the most advanced ever. Apart from getting more spacious, and feature-rich, it may also get an SHVS equipped engine to lower emissions and return higher fuel efficiency. Maruti is also aiming at launching new generation WagonR and Celerio, all planned for launch in 2019.
Suzuki Alto Works – Photos
Via – Economictimes