Maruti Suzuki to launch new premium MPV on July 5

Based on the Toyota Innova Hycross, Maruti Suzuki's new MPV will sit at the top of its line-up and is expected to be its most expensive model; likely to come with a strong hybrid powertrain.

By Akbar Merchant, Autocar India calendar 09 Jun 2023 Views icon3442 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp

Passenger vehicle market leader Maruti Suzuki India is to introduce an all-new MPV  on July 5, 2023. This new MPV, likely to be called the Engage, is being jointly developed with Toyota and will be a sister product to the popular Innova Hycross, but will get styling elements that will help differentiate it from the Toyota MPV. Sources tell us that this new MPV will go on sale by late July this year from Maruti Suzuki premium Nexa dealerships. 

As with every shared model between Maruti Suzuki and Toyota thus far, Maruti's version of the Innova Hycross will have slightly different design cues to differentiate it from its Toyota counterpart. Leaked design patents of the new Maruti MPV reveal an all-new grille with a honeycomb mesh pattern outlined by a chrome trim. There are two horizontal chrome bars running right through the centre of the grille, joining the headlamps at either end. 

The front bumper will also be tweaked and is expected to feature a prominent lip with a faux brushed aluminium finish to make it look like a skid plate. These design cues are, in fact, in line with the Grand Vitara. There will be minor changes to the rear bumper as well.

As far as the headlamps and tail-lamps are concerned, the overall shape is expected to remain the same, but the internals and graphics will be different. The Maruti MPV is expected to get the brand's signature 'three dots' LED DRL treatment as seen on the Grand Vitara and Baleno, thus bringing it more in line with other Nexa products. 

The new Maruti MPV will sit on the Toyota TNGA-C architecture; the naturally aspirated petrol and strong-hybrid petrol engines that are seen on the Innova Hycross will also power the Maruti MPV.

New Maruti MPV: first rebadged Toyota for Maruti

Since the inception of the Toyota-Suzuki alliance in 2017, Suzuki-built vehicles like the now-discontinued Vitara Brezza compact SUV and the Baleno were cross-badged and sold as the Toyota Urban Cruiser and the Glanza in India (or the Starlet in South Africa), respectively. At the moment, the latest-gen Baleno, the Ciaz, the Ertiga and even the Celerio are sold as Toyotas in some markets, including South Africa and the Middle East.

The upcoming premium MPV will be the first Toyota product to be rebadged for Maruti Suzuki. It will be built by Toyota Kirloskar Motor at its Bidadi plant and supplied to Maruti. In Europe, two Toyota models, the RAV-4 and the Corolla Wagon, are sold as Suzuki offerings – the A-Cross and the Suzuki Swace, respectively.

The Innova Hycross is already a popular vehicle and commands a long waiting period. Toyota Kirloskar Motor recently paused bookings for the top trims due to high demand, and, as such, it remains to be seen how many of such vehicles can Toyota supply to Maruti Suzuki. 

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