Toyota and Maruti Suzuki to jointly manufacture a new SUV
Maruti Suzuki has revised its plans regarding the manufacture of the Vitara Brezza at alliance partner Toyota's factory in Karnataka from 2022. According to Autocar, Maruti Suzuki and Toyota are now working on a new mid-sized SUV that will be poised as a challenger to the Hyundai Creta and Kia Seltos. The model will be manufactured at Toyota's plant from 2022.
Why did the two companies opt for joint development?
The upcoming SUV will help Maruti Suzuki and Toyota fill a big gap in their product portfolios and allow them to compete against rivals like Hyundai and Kia that currently dominate the fast-growing compact SUV segment in India. The joint development and production will also help in minimizing costs by pooling in resources and offer a competitive product.
What do we know about the new Maruti Suzuki-Toyota SUV?
The upcoming model will be a 4.3m-long mid-sized SUV, based on Toyota's Daihatsu New Global Architecture (DNGA) platform meant for emerging markets. It will draw power from Maruti Suzuki's 1.5-liter petrol engine. However, a turbo-petrol unit might be in the pipeline as well. In terms of design, Maruti Suzuki and Toyota's versions of the SUV will share common underpinnings but with distinctive styling.
Hyundai and Kia's success story
The first-generation model of the Hyundai Creta was so popular in India that the new model has consistently topped the sales charts since its launch earlier this year. Meanwhile, the Seltos has been a consistent performer for Kia. The two models have played a key role in expanding the combined SUV market share of the two companies in India to roughly 50%.
A timeline of Maruti Suzuki-Toyota partnership
Earlier this year, Maruti Suzuki started supplying a rebadged version of its Vitara Brezza, called the Urban Cruiser, to Toyota. Both the cars are currently manufactured at Maruti's factory in Gurugram, Haryana.