We broke the news earlier this week about the new Maruti Compact SUV (codename: YBA) being readied for the market. Maruti’s exciting new offering will be aimed squarely at the Ford EcoSport, which means it will have a length of less than four metres.
Like the YRA hatchback, this one will also use Maruti’s existing range of engines, the K12 and K14 — but there is a very good chance that it may abandon the ubiquitous 1.3 Multijet for a brand new 1.5-litre diesel engine, also sourced from Fiat. This motor is essentially a downsized version of the company’s current 1.6 JTD engine, and is expected to produce over 100bhp. This new engine project has been under consideration for some time now, and could come to fruition in time for this car’s launch.
In order to take on the likes of the EcoSport, this car will have to possess more than just Maruti’s traditional strengths of value and reliability – it has to be desirable too. While we hear that the styling will be really aggressive, the serious trump card that Maruti might just pull off, however, is all-wheel drive (AWD). The company’s ‘AllGrip’ AWD system will be coming here in the S-cross, and though such a small SUV doesn’t necessarily justify such a system, Suzuki has offered AWD in its compact SUVs in the past globally, so don’t rule it out, at least as a top-spec option. However, as ever with Maruti, the real advantage should be its price, and this compact SUV will likely undercut the EcoSport.
Our sources tell us that Maruti may unveil the production version of this all-new compact SUV at the Auto Expo 2016 and it could be called Maruti iV4.