Maruti 800 substitute gets ready for launch by year end

Tuesday 10 April 2012, 10:46 AM by

Maruti Suzuki India Limited, India’s largest car maker, introduced its iconic car Maruti 800 around 30 years back. Since the car was launched in the market back in 1983, it has been a prominent choice of the buyers. However, it is believed that the company will introduce a replacement for this vehicle, under a completely new brand name before the end of this year.

The new car is expected to be tagged with a price range of Rs. 2.5 lacs to 3.5 lacs. However the car will hold a F8D engine, which is already introduced in the base variant of Alto but with a revised configuration, so that it can easily compete with other cars of the same segment.

A company official commented, “A replacement for the 800cc model makes sense as it hasn't been selling very aggressively at about 2,000 units a month. This will be a totally new small car, though based on an existing platform.”

He further added that the company will continue distributing two existing models of Alto, since they are highly demanded in the market. The company produces around 20,000 units of these Alto models in a month. Vehicles offered by Maruti Suzuki will now focus over fuel efficiency and low maintenance, which is one of the key features in the small car segment. On the other hand, the car will feature a new design that will flaunt Maruti’s new era of styling and designing.

In the current scenario, the section of 800 cc cars is flooded with Hyundai Eon and Maruti Alto. In addition, Tata Motors is also working on a new project – 800 cc Nano and auto makers like Nissan-Renault have also eyed upon the same segment. On this, industry experts said, “With petrol prices on the rise and urban spaces getting crowded, the fuel-efficient compact car category is expected to show strong growth in the future. However, the next step is developing smaller diesel engines for the segment.”

Since September 2010, Maruti has not offered its 800 in 13 main cities of India, because it does not go parallel with the Bharat Stage IV emissions norms. Since its launch in 1983, the hatchback has seen many upgrades and was based on the platform of Suzuki Alto, the car which was later introduced in the auto market of India.