One of the most anticipated launches that is scheduled to happen next year is the 2017 Maruti Suzuki Ignis. Should it be called a hatchback or a crossover? We asked Maruti Suzuki and the officials commented it is a premium urban compact car. It is already known that the upcoming Ignis will be positioned below the Swift, and the pricing accordingly should range in the region of Rs 5-7 lakh, ex-showroom.
At the time of its showcase, Maruti Suzuki clearly mentioned that the target audience for the Ignis is the population that lies in the 20-25 age gap. The company states that the reports have shown that India has the largest young population in the world, with approximately 41 per cent below the age of 20. There has been a growing trend of such young car buyers which amounted to 22 per cent in 2010 and now stands at 27 per cent. The same is expected to grow exponentially.
The Ignis will be manufactured at the company's Sanand plant in Gujarat. The development of the Ignis project took four years. Maruti Suzuki mentions that the design and the features will play a key role in the success of the Ignis in the Indian market. While first-time buyers will be the obvious target, the company states that the Ignis will also be seen as the second car in the family.
1) Revised fifth-generation platform
The 2017 Maruti Suzuki Ignis is based on the second version of the fifth-generation platform. However, it is different from the fifth-generation platform that underpins the Maruti Suzuki Baleno, states C V Raman, executive director, engineering, Maruti Suzuki India. Dimensionally, the Suzuki Ignis measures 3,700mm in length, 1,660mm in width and 1,595 mm in height. It has a wheelbase of 2,435mm and gets a reasonable bootspace of 258 litres that can be increased to 415 litres with the rear seats folded down.
2) Comes equipped with Google Android Auto and Apple CarPlay
The cabin will have a unique layout with a host of premium additions. The instrument cluster, dashboard design and also the central panel look very distinct from what we have seen in Maruti Suzuki cars. But what makes the Ignis more premium than its rivals is the availability of Apple CarPlay and Google Android Auto. The Ignis will be the first Maruti Suzuki car to get Android Auto, and the same will be offered in other Nexa products as well.
3) Will have two customisation kits - Terra and Sprint
Customisation will play a major role as many car manufacturer are offering multiple options to customers to make their car unique. And Maruti Suzuki too has become a part of this. In fact, the company already offers a host of options on its other offerings. The 2017 Ignis will be offered with two customisation options, namely the Terra and Sprint. Though the company didn't reveal much about these options, as the name suggests, the Terra will have rugged additions while the Sprint will have more of vinyl options.
4) Powered by K12 1.2-litre petrol and a DDis 190 1.3-litre diesel
The 1.2-litre petrol and 1.3-litre diesel motor that will power the Ignis is the same that does duty in the Maruti Suzuki Swift. Also, both these motors will be available with an automated manual transmission. The Europe-spec Ignis is sold with a 1.2-litre Dualjet motor that is also seen in the Baleno sold internationally. We asked if there was any particular reason on choosing the ageing 1.2-litre Swift motor over the Dualjet options. The engine options were chosen depending on the market requirement, and the final powertrains made perfect sense for the Indian market. He also clarified that Maruti Suzuki will not offer SHVS on the Ignis. The company, however, is looking at introducing the all-wheel drive variant but that will happen later.
5) ABS and dual airbags will be offered as standard
Since the 2017 Maruti Suzuki Ignis will be sold under the Nexa brand, it will be offered with ABS and dual airbags as a standard feature. In terms of safety, the Ignis also complies with the offset and side impact along with pedestrian protection - all of which will be mandatory in cars in the coming years. Alongside of these, pre-tensioners and ISOFIX too will be offered as standard. It should be noted that the India-bound Suzuki Ignis received a 3-star rating in Euro NCAP crash tests.
We caught up with C V Raman, executive director, engineering - Maruti Suzuki India to know more about the 2017 Ignis.