In the coming days, Maruti will unveil a new compact SUV to compete with the Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos. However, the company has not yet revealed the exact launch date.
Maruti Suzuki, which is a market leader in India’s hatchback segment, is now planning to expand its presence in the more premium compact segment, particularly in the SUV category. According to HT Auto, India’s largest carmaker is planning to launch a new model in the compact SUV segment to compete with the Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos, among others.
In the same segment, Maruti already has the S-Cross SUV, but its sales numbers haven’t been strong enough to challenge segment leaders like the Creta or Seltos. Maruti is expected to introduce the facelift version of the S-Cross, which was recently unveiled for global markets. Maruti will, however, bet on a new model to compete with other feature-packed compact SUVs.
Maruti is likely to team up with Toyota Motor, with whom it has a model-sharing agreement in India. The next big announcement from Maruti could be a joint-development SUV between the two carmakers. In India, Toyota has rebadged versions of the Maruti Baleno and Brezza, but Maruti has yet to launch a rebadged Toyota model.
Both carmakers have an opportunity in the compact SUV segment. Toyota, which relies heavily on the sale of its Fortuner SUV and Innova Crysta MPV in India, does not have any compact SUV models of its own. Toyota may introduce the RAV4, one of its best-selling SUVs worldwide, to compete with Korean automakers in the compact SUV market.
The Toyota RAV4 could serve as the foundation for Maruti’s new compact SUV. Suzuki, Maruti’s Japanese partner, already sells a model named Across in international markets that is based on the Toyota RAV4 SUV. Maruti and Toyota are likely to follow suit and begin work on a new SUV for India in the near future.
Despite the fact that an official announcement has yet to be made, Maruti is unlikely to drive the new SUV before 2023. Before Maruti commits to a new compact SUV for the Indian market, a lot would depend on the Covid issue as well as the ongoing supply crisis.