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Toyota Urban Cruiser in the works – Is it the rebadged Maruti Brezza?

Toyota has trademarked ‘Urban Cruiser’ as ‘Automobiles and structural goods thereof’ almost a year ago

It is not news that Toyota Kirloskar Motor and Maruti Suzuki have formed a joint venture to introduce rebadged products from each other in the upper and lower segments of the market. Maruti Suzuki is a strong player in the affordable segment while premium Toyota models are popular higher up the price ladder. As a first, Toyota has already introduced the Glanza hatchback which is exactly a Maruti Baleno with a badge job.

Over the months, several reports have stated that the next product coming under the joint venture would be a rebadged Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza subcompact crossover. Parallel to this piece of information, Toyota had filed a trademark for the name, ‘Urban Cruiser’. Could this be Toyota’s version of the Maruti Brezza?

The application (#3872977) dates back to 28 June 2018 and is listed as ‘Automobiles and structural goods thereof’ in the ‘Goods & Services Description’ section. Interestingly, the Toyota Glanza was launched in India earlier the same month. In the Japanese brand’s Indian portfolio, the Glanza hatchback has become the most affordable product for BS6 era as the BS4-compliant Etios range has been discontinued.

Toyota Urban Cruiser
Toyota Urban Cruiser name registered in India

As in the case of Toyota’s Glanza, badging could be one of the very few changes that will differentiate it from its base product. However, the possibility of getting minor cosmetic tweaks and extra features are not bleak since the Toyota Glanza has been ridiculed oftentimes for not being significantly different from the Baleno hatchback

Maruti Suzuki introduced the facelifted 2020MY Vitara Brezza at Auto Expo 2020 in early-February. Besides becoming compliant to BS6 emission norms, it packs a fair amount of updates in terms of styling and equipment. However, the Indian automaker has discontinued the 1.3-litre DDiS diesel motor (sourced from FCA) across its entire range has opted a petrol-only portfolio for BS6 era.

The 2020 Maruti Brezza BS6 comes only with a 1.5-litre K15B four-cylinder petrol motor, which would most likely be the engine of choice in the Toyota Urban Cruiser (if it is indeed what we think it is). The power plant is good for around 103bhp and 138Nm of torque. It is available mated to either a 5-speed manual or a 4-speed TC automatic transmission.

Once launched, the Urban Cruiser will face strong rivalry from its Maruti Suzuki sibling, as well as some other strong names on the market. This includes the Mahindra XUV300, Tata Nexon, Hyundai Venue and even the upcoming Kia Sonet. Nissan India is also working on a subcompact crossover (or ‘compact SUV’ in Indian standards).

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