Maruti Suzuki to showcase Kei cars at Auto Expo?
With the onslaught of Eon and Nano on the Alto's sales figures, Business Standard reports that Maruti Suzuki has decided to take drastic measures to retain its leadership in the small car segment. Maruti Suzuki will display not one but two 600cc models at the Auto Expo to gather feedback about their viability in the Indian market.
The two cars in question are Palette and MR Wagon.
The Palette is a Kei car cum micro mini-van that can seat four people in reasonable comfort. The key features of the Palette are dual sliding doors, flat floor, keyless entry and start, and HID headlamps. The Palette is powered by a 658 cc petrol engine mated to a 5-speed automatic /manual transmission sending 66 horses to the front or all four wheels.
2) MR Wagon
Another Kei car with a tall boy design, the MR wagon is a sub compact hatchback powered by a 660 cc, three cylinder engine producing 54 bhp. However, you also get a turbocharged version that develops a 'whopping' 64 bhp. The power can be send to front or all four wheels with a automatic/manual gearbox.
After analyzing the feedback, a production version would be readied for the Indian market and either one or both of the compact cars would be launched in the next two-three years.
Although both cars are powered by a 660 cc engine, Maruti is not trying to make 'Nano competitor'. The Alto will still remain the entry level contender from Maruti Suzuki. Although the engine of these 2 cars is smaller than Alto, these cars will be loaded with features to the brim thus pushing the price tag skywards.
Apart from these two Kei cars, Maruti Suzuki will also showcase the Ertiga MPV and an SUV concept to the visitors.
Do you think we need more entry level 600cc cars in the market?