Maruti hasn't had a very successful history when it comes to its premium cars. Both the Baleno and SX4 performed adequately at best while the Vitara and Kizashi were sales duds. Finally things seem to be looking up for India's largest auto manufacturer as their brand new Ciaz has outsold its biggest rival, the Honda City in its first month on sale. Maruti has shipped 6345 units of the Ciaz while Honda moved 5120 units of the City. Of course that could be down to the initial sales rush associated with a new product but it is nevertheless a good sign for Maruti Suzuki.
Maruti offers the Ciaz with a choice of a 1.4-litre petrol engine or a 1.3-litre diesel. A five-speed manual gearbox comes as standard on both but Maruti offers the choice of a four-speed automatic on the petrol variant. Maruti currently has 17,000 bookings for the Ciaz. Prices range from Rs 6.99 lakh for the base petrol to Rs 9.8 lakh for the top diesel, all ex-showroom Delhi.
Honda recently announced that they will start a second shift for production of the new City from their Tapukara plant. This should help offset the waiting period for the City diesel and help Honda move more units.