Forget the Ignis though for a moment and instead let’s reflect on the marvel that is the first-gen Zen which is arguably the most remarkable small car in India since, well, the original SS80. Sure, the late model Estilo isn’t what you would call a pioneering feat in the spirit of the mighty original, but you have got to give it to Maruti Suzuki for keeping it alive and kicking throughout the 90s and early 2000s.
Fast forward to 2017 and heightened demand for more affordable and reliable cars have only added to the general monotony in car-making. The new Ignis however is different and for good reasons. To begin with, it’s the way it looks. Like the old Zen, the Ignis has been designed primarily for the Japanese crowd and their peculiar taste towards aesthetics. It challenges convention with its slab-like headlights, which mimic the gleaming eyes of certain juvenile manga characters, and the outlandishly raked boot-lid.
Another area where the Ignis breaks the mould and jumps out like a Nyan Cat is the cabin design. Everything from the tablet-like screen, the minimalistic center console and the contrasting upholstery brings in a sense of liveliness that has never really been there, even in the more expensive Maruti models.
The engine options powering the Ignis are ones that we have seen in several Marutis already – a 1.2-litre petrol and a 1.3-litre diesel. Sure enough, for such a diminutive machine there’s hardly any weight to lug around and at 900kg or thereabout, the Ignis should be worth a few chuckles around the corners.
The Ignis, then, assuming it’s as much fun to drive as its highly worshipped forefather, has the potential to pave the way for a whole new breed of cars of its kind. Watch out for our initial impressions straight from the first drive that’s scheduled later this week.