India’s No. 1 automaker, Maruti Suzuki has multiple cars in its extensive portfolio. Channeled through its two outlets viz. – Maruti Suzuki Arena & Maruti Suzuki Nexa, the brand provides a wide array of vehicles for almost every potential buyer. Both of these outlets sell their own group of vehicles, with Nexa majorly focusing on premium offerings like Ciaz, XL6, Ignis, S-Cross and Baleno. Now, Baleno has been a popular name in its segment. Loading the Baleno with features has extensively helped Maruti in growing sales for this hatchback. Maruti, however, has some other plans too. If speculations are to be believed, Maruti is planning a Baleno CNG as well. However, the speculations have long been in news, but the ultimate question that arises here is that whether the Baleno CNG is actually happening or not. So in today’s article, we will discuss this in detail and why there are high chances for it. Let’s begin.
Maruti Baleno CNG – Will it happen?
Looking at the current situation with the increasing fuel prices, buyers are moving towards an economical option to go for and companies are also leaning towards the same. Brands like Tata & Hyundai have started to give factory fitted CNG options to supply the increasing demands of the customers. Talking about Maruti, it has the largest number of CNG cars available fresh out of the factory. Now, Baleno is the highest selling car under the Nexa brand.
Now, if we look at Maruti as a brand, it has always focused on bringing affordable and fuel-efficient cars. This is the strategy that they have been following in the modern times as well. If we look at their launches since starting from the new Celerio, they have targeted respective segments with highest efficiency figures. Although the Baleno is already a very fuel-efficient car, Maruti would definitely want to offer an option that would further enhance its numbers.
Now, there are two more factors to look in at that make sense and hint towards this possibility. Maruti already has a slew of cars underpinned by its reliable factory fitted S-CNG technology and the new Baleno would be an addition to that. With dual independent ECUs, suspension tweaks and other important changes specifically for the CNG model, Maruti has already sold over 10 lakh vehicles with the S-CNG technology. So, doing this for the Baleno would not cost much.
The next important thing is a statement made by MSIL CTO CV Raman. According to him, in the next decade, MSIL will phase out pure petrol cars. All of them would either be electrified, or driven by CNG, or bio-fuel. Bringing the Baleno CNG could be a small, yet effective step in this direction. Moreover, a CNG car in the premium hatchback segment would give them a further lead.
Maruti Baleno comes powered by 1.2-litre Dual Jet petrol engine producing 88bhp & 113Nm of torque and comes mated to a manual & an AMT transmission. Now, the CNG kit will definitely take up its 318-litres of boot space and it will only be available with a 5-speed manual gearbox. The performance will mostly see a slight downgrade when the gross weight of the car with 4 passengers and luggage hits, but other than that, no other difference is expected.
Maruti Baleno CNG – Pricing
The Baleno CNG is expected to be priced at a premium of Rs 65,000 to Rs 70,000 over the regular variants. When will it launch is still a question, but as explained above, the chances of this happening are very high. Could Maruti launch it next year? We will have to wait for that.
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