The headline seems like a tantalising prospect for the average Indian car buyer; a small easy to maintain, easy to park and cheap to run oil burner and that may soon be true. A report from Autocar Pro suggest that the 800cc diesel engine in this regard is currently believed to be under development in Japan and will make its way into a small car (codenamed YL7) that will be based on A-Star’s platform. Reports suggest that it will be launched either during the upcoming festive season or in the early part of next year.
The YL7 will be Suzuki’s smallest oil burner.It is also expected to power a variant of the Wagon R as well as the upcoming Stingray. This engine will be manufactured at Maruti Suzuki’s Gurgaon plant where the first phase of the diesel engine plant is expected to come online next year. When launched, the YL7 will compete with the yet to be launched Tata Nano diesel as well the Chevrolet Beat diesel.
While the YL7 will steal the limelight much like the Alto 800 did last October, the other major launch for 2013-2014 is expected to a facelifted version of the Swift hatchback. This new car was first ‘unintentionally’ revealed by the Japanese automaker on its official Belgium website and was eventually launched in various markets across the continent. The changes are mainly cosmetic both on the inside and outside. With sales of the car starting to drop due to the competitive price of the Ford EcoSport, we expect that Suzuki will the bring the car here sooner than expected.
The other major launches from the Japanese automaker for 2013-2014 are expected to be the Wagon R Stingray, a new Zen and finally two new variants of the recently launched S-Cross SX4. While the report suggests that 2014 SX4 saloon will launched here at the end of this year and the crossover in the middle of next year, we believe that will be the other way around due to the increase in demand for crossovers and the lack lustre performance of the sedan.
Reports have also emerged of Maruti Suzuki looking at the feasibility of setting up an assembly facility in South Africa or Sri Lanka. However, both the moves will only get the green signal, if feasible, once the Gujarat plant is fully functional in 2015.