Suzuki is all set to make India a Global production hub for the new Maruti Baleno which is set to launch on 26th October, 2015. The car will be exported from India to 100 countries including Japan via the CBU route.
Japan based leading car manufacturer in India, Maruti Suzuki will soon be seen in a new role as the global producer of the new Suzuki Baleno. Suzuki has confirmed that it will be shifting its production base to India once its manufacturing plant in Manesar, Gujarat is up and ready. Suzuki plans to make India its sole production and export hub for the new car, for both local distribution as well as export to 100 countries worldwide. Even Japan will be seen sourcing the new car in the form of CBU units from the Manesar plant.
The 2016 Maruti Baleno is positioned in the premium hatchback segment and will be sold through the new and exclusive NEXA showrooms. Developed from scratch with a large investment of Rs. 1060 crores, the new Baleno will be the most premium hatchback to be sold by Maruti Suzuki. The Baleno is based on an all new platform by Suzuki, meaning that the new car will be 100 kgs lighter and 10 percent stronger than its smaller sibling, the Swift.
The vehicle comes with two engine options, a 1.2-litre petrol producing 83.1 BHP with an option of manual or CVT transmission and a 1.2-litre diesel producing 73.9 BHP with a manual transmission. The engines are refined to give a fuel efficiency of 27.3 km/l on the diesel version and 21.4 km/l on the petrol model. Also the car comes with loads of new features which are segment firsts like Apple CarPlay, glass which cuts out UV radiation by 85 percent, anti-pinch windows, while also providing dual airbags and ABS as standard on all variants.
Suzuki officials said that they have already bought 640 acres and 470 acres of separate land in Gujarat which are about 20 kms apart from one another. They also mentioned that India, especially Gujarat is ideally suited for exports as labour costs are comparatively less in India, while another main reason for the production shift being several constraints in Japan in regards to the appreciating Yen and also the constant natural calamities which have a severe impact on the company’s profitability.
India being a low cost base has helped Maruti Suzuki localise the Baleno to the tune of 99%. Bookings for the Baleno are now open for an amount of Rs. 26,000/-. Maruti has 1702 dealers pan India with 80 NEXA outlets to be functional by the end of this month. Exports will commence by the end of the year and Maruti aims at dethroning the Hyundai Elite i20 to take leadership in the premium hatchback space. The company also states that it has enough production capacity to boost production when the market demands.