New Suzuki Solio launched in Japan

Tuesday, December 28, 2010, 10:00 by Auto Correspondent

Suzuki Motor Corporation, Japan, has launched the latest avatar of Solio (known as Maruti Suzuki Wagon R in India) in its home market.

The new Solio is 115 mm longer than the current model. Suzuki has plonked in a peppy 1242 cc petrol engine that produces 91 bhp maximum power. The engine is mated to a automatic transmission (CVT). Besides, Suzuki offers Solio in both 2WD and 4WD in Japan.

new suzuki solio photo

Photo: New Suzuki Solio

When compared to the Indian Maruti Suzuki WagonR, the Japanese Suzuki Solio gives a premium feel with lavish chrome doses, sliding second row doors and straighter rear design resembling the Tata Sumo Grande’s rear. Importantly, the Solio will have better interiors with decent leg room for rear passengers and a better cargo space. Related: Maruti WagonR road test

Interestingly, fellow Japanese carmaker, Mitsubishi Motor Corporation has signed an agreement with Suzuki to buy 800 units of the 2011 Solio and distribute the car through its dealers. Since, the car is RHD (Right Hand Drive), Mitsubishi may launch it in UK and India. However, it is too early to gauge because, Mitsubishi is very lax in executing its plans for Indian market.

new wagonr photo

Photo: New Maruti Suzuki WagonR

Maruti Suzuki in India is still holding the majority (46%) share with its handful of top 10 largest selling cars in the country including Swift, Wagon R and Alto. However, owing to the competition, the company is more serious than before in upgrading the models constantly to match rivals such as Chevrolet Beat, Ford Figo, Hyundai i10 and i20.

The new Wagon R (which the company calls ‘the blue-eyed-boy for its blue-tinted headlamps) was launched in April 2010, is powered by 998 cc K series petrol engine that produces 68 bhp of maximum power and 90 Nm of maximum torque, and returns a mileage of 14.7 kmpl (overall). Wagon R became an instant hit and is selling at the rate of 15,000 units per month on an average.

Recently, Maruti is also experimenting in launching models that co-exist with the popular brands; Alto K10 and Ritz are good examples. We can expect Maruti to offer us the Indianized Solio by 2012, but before that, Kizashi and Sx4 Diesel will reach the Maruti showrooms!