On February 24, 1981, Maruti Suzuki, India’s largest automobile manufacturer, was founded. The firm has never looked back in terms of revenue since then, and it continues to dominate the industry. Maruti Suzuki has held more than 50% shares in the Indian automotive market and to this day they are continuing to dominate the sales chart. However, there are just a handful of automobiles from the company that has vanished into history. Take a look at some of the Forgotten Maruti Cars.
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Forgotten Maruti Cars That Might Know About
Maruti Suzuki Zen D
Source – Wikipedia
Indians were ecstatic with Maruti Suzuki’s low-cost vehicles. This affection is evident in the Maruti 800 and the Zen. This is why the business chose to release the Zen diesel model. It was powered by a 1.5-liter Peugeot diesel engine that produced 58 horsepower and 96 Nm of peak torque. However, it was unable to get the traction that the company had hoped for. In India, the diesel revolution came much later.
Maruti Suzuki Versa
Eeco must have been viewed by everyone at some point. However, just a handful of you may recall the Versa, the Eeco’s forerunner. Maruti wanted to make sure it captured the hearts of its customers, thus it launched with Amitabh Bachchan as the brand ambassador. It was launched with a 1.2 Liter petrol engine that produced 83.1 PS and 105 NM of torque. It was priced at 3.63 Lakh and goes up to 4.7 lakh. However, the MPV failed to acquire traction and was replaced by the Eeco in 2009.
Maruti Suzuki Zen Carbon & Steel
People went wild in love with the limited edition firm created in a tiny number of 300 units thanks to the Zen cult. The three-door carbon and steel Zen was a variation of the original Zen. You may have seen a modified version of one of them.
Maruti Suzuki A-Star
The firm is recognized for releasing low-cost vehicles that compete with higher-priced vehicles in several categories. Maruti released the A-Star to compete with the popular Hyundai i10. But it had to compete with its own tribe, Swift and the Wagon R. This was the case, and the hatchback was a sales failure. It was powered by a 999cc inline 3 cylinder engine that produced 69bhp. It was priced at 4.6 lakhs ex-showroom. A-Star was discontinued in 2012.
Maruti Suzuki Ritz
When Maruti discontinued the A-Star, there was a pile of leftover components and materials that the firm wasn’t willing to throw away. As a result, the engineers devised Ritz, a superior alternative. There were two engine options for the car: a 1.2-liter petrol engine and a 1.3-liter diesel engine. The car was recognized for its luxurious ride, strong performance, and tallboy posture. You can still see Ritz roaming around on the roads.
Suzuki Baleno Altura
The Baleno is a popular automobile these days, with sales dominating its sector. Baleno used to be available in a station wagon variant. The firm attempted to tap into a market niche that was already well-established in Europe. Baleno Altura was the name given to the station wagon. A 1.6-liter petrol engine was used to power it. Baleno Altura was launched at a price tag of 5.88 lakh in the Indian market.
Maruti Suzuki 1000 Or Esteem
This vehicle was the company’s first foray into the sedan market. It was designed for high-end clientele. When it was first released in 1990, the sedan cost 4.72 lakhs, which was on the upper end of the market at the time. It was powered by a 1.0-liter engine capable of producing 46 horsepower. The automobile was later modified with a 1.3-liter engine and given the Esteem nameplate.
Maruti Suzuki Omni | The Kidnappers’ Car
The Omni was known to be a favorite with kidnappers (As it was shown in so many movies and tv series of the time), therefore children were scared of it. Just joking! It was a multi-purpose vehicle that could be employed as an ambulance or a freight truck. Omni was noted for carving out a niche for itself with a range of seating options and layouts. However, the automobile had significant flaws in terms of safety. The firm halted Omni as India moved toward safer roads with the introduction of BNVSAP.
Suzuki Grand Vitara
The firm lacked a full-size SUV. As a result, the Grand Vitara was born. However, the cost of the CBU import was added to the purchase, bringing the total to Rs. 20 lakhs. Customers, on the other hand, were not willing to spend this much on a Maruti. Despite the fact that the strong 2.4-liter V6 Petrol engine managed to attract a few buyers, the vehicle was terminated in 2014. The Vitara Brezza moniker is now carried on by a sub-4 small SUV with less power.
Maruti Suzuki 800
Maruti came to the rescue with the well-known legend 800 when the Indians needed an affordable automobile. Customers adored the ‘Hall Of Fame’ automobile, which remains Maruti’s best-selling model to this day. 800 was never up against any stiff competition in the market because it was both affordable and fuel-efficient. The car’s removal from the market was due to its failure to meet pollution standards. It continues to be a heartthrob among those who alter the heritage.
Maruti Suzuki SX4
This car was first introduced by the firm in 2007. It was an instant success story because of its luxurious appearance and elegant interiors. The riding quality on the SX4 was incredible. It was powered by a 1.6-liter VVT DOHC petrol engine that produced 104 horsepower and 145NM of torque. However, as diesel engines became more common in the sector, the SX4 began to lose its market exclusivity. In 2011, Maruti Suzuki attempted to resurrect the SX4 by launching a 1.3-liter DDis diesel engine capable of producing 88hp and 200Nm of torque. But it was too late by the time SX4 received its oil burner. In 2014, the sedan was phased out and was replaced by the Ciaz.
The Celerio was the first automobile in India to have Automatic Gear Shift (AGS) technology. It was first released in 2014 and is still available for purchase. For a limited length of time, there was also a diesel variation. Celerio Diesel was introduced in 2015 with a 0.8-liter turbocharged diesel engine. The automobile featured a 47-horsepower engine with a max torque of 125Nm. The Celerio Diesel achieved the best-in-segment mileage of 27.62 kilometers per liter. Despite this, it was unable to attract a large number of subscribers and was eventually phased down in 2017. Many of you may not be aware that there was also a diesel version.
It’s not true that everything that glitters sells. The Kizashi was introduced by Maruti Suzuki in 2011. It was a period when the entire globe was recovering from the global financial crisis of 2008, with India recovering at a slower pace than the rest of the world. The automobile was imported into India as a CBU, which means it costs more due to import tariffs. At the time it was priced at 16.53 lakhs. Kizashi was powered by a 2.4 liter inline 4 cylinder engine that can produce 175 BHP. The downfall of this ultra-premium automobile was primarily due to Maruti’s own brand value. The firm has been noted for introducing inexpensive and fuel-efficient automobiles since its establishment in 1981. Kizashi was none of these things.
This Maruti Suzuki off-roader is more of an immortal than a forgotten vehicle. It still roams the streets, despite the fact that it is no longer in production. With the debut of Gypsy/Jimny in India, it is believed that the cult beginner would return. The off-roader was introduced in December of 1985. Rally car drivers and off-road enthusiasts have made it renowned. However, it’s worth noting that 90 percent of purchases went to government organizations, police, and the military.
This is only a personal perspective; many of you may have enjoyed the Zen Estilo. The Zen name has a long history, which the business attempted to resurrect with the Zen Estilo. After Zen was discontinued in 2007, the low-cost small hatchback was introduced. The design was very different from what consumers were used to with the previous Zen, therefore it was never able to touch the nostalgia button. After a mediocre stint on the market, Estilo was discontinued in 2014.
The Wagon R, India’s favorite cab, received a makeover. Its interior and appearance were more luxurious than the Wagon R’s. When it came to the engine, it was the same as the Wagon R’s. All of this increased the price, and buyers were not willing to pay more for the same automobile with a few novices thrown in here and there. Stingray was never able to catch on and was phased out in 2017 after only four years.
So here you have it, all the forgotten Maruti cars that once ruled the India road. Some more than others. Let us know which car was your favorite from this list. Did we miss anything? let us know in the comments below.