Auto Expo 2016: Maruti Ignis and Baleno RS concept revealed

Maruti Suzuki has taken the wraps off two concepts – the Maruti Ignis and Baleno RS. Both will be launched in India by Diwali this year. The Ignis shares its platform with the Baleno and looks a lot closer to production now. It was initially showcased globally as the iM-4 concept a couple of years ago, and it’s nice to see that most of the styling cues have carried forward to the Ignis from this concept.  The front end of the car is dominated by LED headlamps which have been neatly integrated into the large chrome grille. The front bumper is a simple unit with chrome ringed fog lamps. The high set bonnet with side vents are a nice touch too.

It measures 3,679mm x 1,478mm x 1,579mm (lxwxh), which makes it marginally bigger than the Renault Kwid. It could be Maruti’s replacement for the aging Wagon R but with the Wagon R posting strong sales numbers every month even now, both cars could sell alongside each other. Internationally, the Ignis gets SHVS tech so expect it to be one of the first budget hatchbacks in the Maruti stable to get the micro hybrid technology.

The Ignis when it goes on sale, will be powered by the 1.2-litre petrol and 1.3-litre diesel engines that also power the Baleno. Maruti might also introduce the 1.0-litre boosterjet engine in the Ignis, but it will first feature in the Baleno.

The Baleno RS is Maruti’s hot hatchback version of the Baleno. It’s the carmaker’s answer to the Polo TSI and competing with the TSI is the new 1.0-litre boosterjet turbo-petrol engine. The engine is said to develop about 110bhp of power and 170Nm of torque. Maruti will ensure that the performance doesn’t go unnoticed as the boosterjet is likely to be sold only with the RS kit which includes sportier bumpers, side skirts and a rear spoiler. Since the Baleno is considerably lighter than the Polo, expect the RS to be a sprightly car.

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