Maruti Suzuki has launched a top-of-the-line automatic version of the Ignis for the diesel and petrol versions. They have been priced at Rs 7.01 lakhs and Rs 8.08 lakhs (ex-showroom Delhi). For this kind of money you get a touchscreen infotainment system, climate control, seating for five and of course, the funky design lines that have defined the Ignis.
However, throw in another Rs 50,000 and you can have a similarly kitted out version of one of Maruti’s strongest products, the Dzire. In this price bracket you get the ZXI/ZDI AMT which is equivalent in terms of features when compared to the Ignis Alpha AT. Even the engine and gearbox spec are exactly the same. The petrol produces 82bhp/113Nm while the diesel is good for 74bhp/190Nm. The gearbox options are five-speed AMTs across both cars.
When you do the math, the Dzire emerges out on top. It is lengthier, has a (marginally) longer wheelbase and course the biggie here is that it has a boot which is separate from the cabin and is a full 118-litre more than that of the Ignis. Additionally, it also fulfills that mindset of the Indian buyer with regard to the premium appeal of a sedan body style as compared to a hatchback.
The Ignis on the other hand is a step away from what Maruti Suzuki does normally. Its bug-eyed face and funky curves echo Kei car to the fullest and you would definitely get a lot of attention when you use the car. This is something that the Dzire will struggle with as there are many of them and now in three generations. In addition to that, the Ignis also carries the Nexa tag which is a step up in terms of sales and service network when compared to the standard Maruti Suzuki products.
So what you have then is Maruti Suzuki playing a well thought out price game. It is offering two different body styles for similar prices, thus broadening their reach in a part of the market that is set to expand within the next few years.
In the end it boils down to what the buyer wants, either a funky hatchback with all the bells and whistles or the most popular sedan on the road. Whichever you choose, it’s a win-win for Maruti Suzuki.