Maruti Suzuki Baleno
Maruti Suzuki BalenoPR handout

Maruti Suzuki launched the Baleno premium hatchback on 26 October last year and within two months of the launch the car made its way to the top ten best selling cars, beating its rival Hyundai Elite i20. However, several reports indicated that the increased sales of Baleno affected sales of its stalemate, the Swift.

Responding to the reports, management of Maruti Suzuki told to the Financial Express that over 50% of the Baleno's bookings are for the top-end variant while Swift' most inquiries are for the mid-varaint. Hence, the risk of Baleno cannibalising the sales of Swift is minimal.

The report makes it clear that Baleno's top-end model Alpha, which is priced at Rs 7.06 lakh for petrol and Rs 8.16 lakh for diesel, contributed to the higher sales of nearly 20,000 units in the last two months.

Being Maruti Suzuki's premium offering, the Baleno Alpha comes with features such as alloy wheels, multi-information colour TFT display, ABS with EBD, Dual airbags, reverse parking camera and Smartplay infotainment system. The increased demand for Baleno also indicates that Maruti Suzuki's intention of setting up Nexa showrooms to sell premium products has bore fruit.

Maruti Baleno, the second product sold via Nexa dealerships, is powered by 1.2-litre K-Series petrol engine and 1.3-litre DDiS diesel engine. While the 1.2-litre K-Series petrol engine is tuned to develop 83bhp and 115Nm of torque, the 1.3-litre DDiS diesel mill churns out 74bhp and 190Nm of torque. Both the engines are mated to a five-speed manual transmission, and the petrol engine is also available with CVT automatic gearbox.