Maruti’s range-topper, the S-Cross, hasn’t quite been a raging success. Critically-acclaimed, the crossover found few takers due to its initially high prices. The S-Cross was available with two diesel engine options – Fiat-sourced 1.3- and 1.6-litre units – and no petrol option. Maruti, however, is still pressing on with this car, launching a facelifted version on September 28, 2017. The facelifted S-Cross features more SUV-like looks and Maruti’s SHVS mild-hybrid system with the 1.3-litre motor, but there is no longer a 1.6-litre option.
The majority of the cosmetic changes are concentrated in the face of the car. The first change you notice is the new grille – it is now more upright, with vertical slats inside, new projector headlamps on the side and a redesigned bumper below. The bonnet is also new and so are the alloy wheels. The S-Cross will remain more or less unchanged in profile and around the back.
The facelift also gets cabin changes, though not substantial ones, such as updated instrument cluster dials with a new multi-information display, new interior colour combinations, upholstery with contrast stitching, and new trim options for the dashboard. The top-spec Alpha variant will feature LED projector lens headlamps with black inserts, while the rest of the range will get HID projector headlamps. In terms of equipment, we can expect features such as the parking camera, Maruti’s SmartPlay infotainment system, automatic headlamps, rain sensing wipers, auto climate control, cruise control, etc., to be carried forward to the facelifted model.
The most notable changes are under the hood. Maruti has decided to discontinue the 1.6-litre diesel motor, probably due to low demand, leaving the 1.3-litre diesel as the only option. There is still no news of a petrol motor – pity, because we hoped for the 1.4-litre Boosterjet engine to make its debut with this car. Maruti will add its SHVS mild-hybrid system to the 1.3-litre diesel mill, which is claimed to effect a seven percent improvement in fuel efficiency over the current diesel car in the Indian driving cycle. This start-stop system, however, is only likely to cause efficiency gains in city traffic conditions.
The facelifted S-Cross’ pricing is likely to rise due to the addition of the SHVS technology and the government’s withdrawal of all hybrid incentives after GST implementation. Furthermore, the recent additional cess on larger cars will further drive up the prices of the facelifted S-Cross.