Saturday, Aug 13, 2022

2019 Maruti Suzuki Alto: Old vs New

The recently updated hatchback gets slightly tweaked aesthetics, new set of standard safety features and a BS 6 petrol engine

  • 2019 model is available in five variants - Std,Std(O), LXI, LXI(O) and VXI, unlike six before.
  • Priced from Rs 2.94 lakh to Rs 3.71 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).
  • Attracts a premium of up to Rs 27,000 over the previous model.
  • Gets driver side airbag, ABS with EBD, rear parking sensors as standard, unlike before.
  • First entry-level hatchback to get a BS 6 engine.

Maruti Suzuki has launched the 2019 Alto at a starting price of Rs 2.94 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).  It not only gets updated styling and added features, but also features such as a first-in segment BS 6 petrol engine. But how different is it from the model it has replaced? Let’s find out.

What’s in a name?

With the launch of the updated model, Maruti has dropped the ‘800’ suffix from the hatchback’s name. It is now called the Alto. It is not the first time the hatchback has been called just the ‘Alto.’ In fact, it was called the ‘Alto’ through most of its life cycle. It was only after 2012, with the introduction of the second-gen model, that the hatchback received the ‘800’ suffix to differentiate it from its elder sibling powered by a 1.0-litre engine.

Now Safer!

The most important update in the 2019 Alto is it’s longer list of safety features. It includes driver side airbag (co-passenger airbag available only in the Std(O),LXI(O) and the top-spec VXI variant), ABS with EBD, rear parking sensors, high speed alert system as well as driver and co-passenger seatbelt reminder. The previous model was only offered with a driver side airbag, that too with the optional variants.

First Entry-Level Car To Get A BS 6 Engine

This is where the 2019 Alto packs the biggest update as it becomes more environmentally friendly than before. Its 800cc petrol engine now adheres to BS 6 emission norms, which will come into play a year later in April 2020, and has become the second Maruti car to feature a BS 6 engine after the Baleno. Although the 796cc unit makes an identical 48PS of power and 69Nm of peak torque in its BS 6 avatar, its fuel economy has gone down. Where the older Alto 800 had a claimed fuel economy of 24.7kmpl, the updated unit manages 22.05kmpl. The transmission, however, has remained unchanged as the hatchback continues to get a 5-speed MT.

Is it Bigger?

  • Except for the length, other dimensions of the new Alto remain identical to the previous model.
  • The 15mm increase in length is the result of a slightly modified front bumper.  

Looks Slightly Different!

Not much has changed with this update. While the basic silhouette remains identical, it has received a slight nip and tuck here and there. Up front, it gets a reworked bumper. While the older Alto featured horizontal slats on the central air dam, the updated Alto gets a new honeycomb mesh. However, the updated Alto misses out on fog lamps. Moving towards the top, the new Alto also gets an updated grille while the headlamps have remained untouched.

Along the side, things remain unchanged. It continues to feature a clean profile with a sharp shoulder line running across the length of the car. The only visible update includes new ORVMs, which have been borrowed from the Alto K10. Like the previous model, the Alto continues to ride on 12-inch steel wheels (with wheel caps) wrapped in 145/80 R12 tyre.

The story remains similar at the rear as well. The 2019 Alto looks identical to the model it has replaced. The only noticeable change is the inclusion of rear parking sensors. This has been done to make the car comply with upcoming safety norms that are set to come into effect on July 1 this year.

Maruti has also introduced a new red colourfor the hatchback. Called Uptown Red, it replaces the Blazing Red available before.

New cabin!

On the inside, the Alto gets a new dashboard that is a straight lift from the Alto K10 and features a dual-tone finish like the latter. However, it gets a black-white combination instead of the black-beige finish seen on the Alto K10. In the new layout, where the AC vents continue to sit at the top of the central console, they are now housed in a single housing with the music system as the AC controls are placed right at the bottom. In the older model, the AC control unit was positioned just below the AC vents and the music system below that.  

Better Equipped

The new Alto continues to get body coloured bumpers ORVMs (internally adjustable), manual AC, front power windows, power steering and central locking with remote keyless entry. It continues to get a music system (in the top-spec VXi variant) but it has been replaced by the new Maruti Smart Play Dock with Bluetooth connectivity which utilises your smartphone as a touch interface for picking calls, music, navigation and more.

How much does it cost?

With the update, Maruti has also recises the variant lineup of the Alto. It is now available in five variants: Std, Std(O), LXi, LXi(O) and VXi, unlike the older car which was available in six variants, including VXi(O).

As far as pricing is concerned, the new Alto is upto Rs 27,000 more expensive than before. It is priced from Rs 2.94 lakh against the older Alto’s starting price of Rs 2.67 lakh.

Here is a detailed price comparison: