The Maruti Suzuki Alto was introduced in 2000, and after almost 17 years of its introduction the car still dominates the entry level segment in the country. The different variants and facelifted versions of the Alto introduced till now has helped it remain on top of the sales chart as it is still one of the highest selling cars in the country.
Maruti Suzuki sold over 1.07 lakh units of the Alto in the first five months of the calendar year 2017. For reference, while Ford sold 86,490 cars in 2016, Volkswagen sold 47,323. As you can see, the five months sales figure of the Alto is more than the combined yearly sales figures of other automakers in India. Moreover, according to Maruti Suzuki, nearly 25 per cent of Alto customers are less than 30 years in age, and this figure has grown by 4 per cent in the past three years, which suggests us that the current generation is also equally interested in the Alto.
The reason behind the popularity of Alto goes to its reliability, lower maintenance cost and Maruti Suzuki’s nationwide service network. Not only is the Alto preferred in tier one and tier two cities, but also in remote hilly places where the availability of spare parts and mechanics are limited.
You also have many options to choose from. It is offered with two engine options: a 0.8-litre petrol engine and a 1.0-litre petrol engine. Moreover, you also have an option of CNG fuel variant and an automatic variant.
The Alto K10 is a fun to drive car as its offers a good power to weight ratio. Also, the automatic variant of the K10 is the most affordable automatic car in its segment which makes driving quite easy in heavy city traffic conditions, without compromising on fuel efficiency. While the Alto is an extremely strong seller, it lacks strong safety credentials with basics like dual airbags and ABS being offered on limited variants.
However, the entry-level segment is getting more and more competitive every year, and with players like Renault and Datsun offering more features and space at the same price, it will be interesting to see how Maruti plans to maintain the legacy of the Alto in the coming years.
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