Suzuki has launched its premium hatchback Baleno in South Africa. Just after the Kwid, Baleno is the second made in India hatchback, to be launched in South Africa. The RSA spec'd hatchback will be made in Maruti Suzuki’s Haryana plant. The hatchback was first unveiled at the 2015 Frankfurt Motor Show, after which it was launched in Asia, Oceania and Europe. The car has seen huge demand in Asian markets, which helped the manufacturer to produce more than 100,000 units of the hatchback.
According to Charl Grobler, the manager of sales and product planning of Suzuki Auto South Africa, the car is great for individuals and families, who are looking for more comfort and convenience of larger hatchback, but want the performance and the efficiency of the Swift. The hatchback will compete with popular hatchbacks like VW Polo, Renault Clio and the Ford Fiesta. Suzuki Auto South Africa has launched the Baleno in GL, GLX MT and GLX AT trims.
On the exterior front, the South African Baleno is identical as its Indian counterpart. The GLX variant gets HID projector lamps, LED DRLs (daytime running lights), turn indicators that are housed on the external mirror housings, door handles that are finished in chrome, spoiler, privacy glass, and 16-inch alloy wheels, shod with big 185/55 R16 tyres.
The inside is done with savvy texture upholstery and pleasant looking door pads and silver accents, 6,2-inch TFT colour screen, 4,2-inch TFT colour display, the leather covered multifunction steering can be adjusted for reach and rake which makes sure that finding a comfortable driving position is not tough, fully automatic AC and climate control system makes the occupants comfortable even in the hottest summer. Additionally, it gets rear park distance control, six speakers, keyless start, cruise control and six airbags for added safety. ABS, EBD and rear disc brakes provide better safety to the occupants even in the harshest conditions.
The South African spec’d Baleno comes with a 1.4-liter K14B engine. The four-cylinder engine can churn out 91.18 hp of maximum power at 6,000 rpm, and a peak torque of 130 Nm at 4,200 rpm. Customers can choose the Baleno between two transmission options, one is a 5-speed manual and the other is a 4-speed automatic transmission. According to Suzuki, the Baleno is quite fuel efficient, with the mileage of of 5.1 L/100 km for the manual, and 5.4 L/100 km for the automatic respectively.