The biggest change on the 2018 Maruti Suzuki Ciaz is the introduction of the new 1.5L K15 petrol engine that has been developed by Maruti Suzuki in-house. The overall cost of development of the new Ciaz has seen an investment of Rs 160 crore by the company out of which the major chunk has been utilised for the development of this petrol engine. Maruti Suzuki Ciaz facelift now gets a powerful engine and is also the first to support Smart Hybrid - SHVS technology. Now, these efforts by Maruti Suzuki will further be carry forwarded to other UVs and SUVs in the Maruti Suzuki product line-up.
Essentially, Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Maruti Suzuki S-Cross and the upcoming all-new generation of Maruti Suzuki Ertiga will be powered by this new petrol engine. Of course, the tuning and the power will change and vary as per the vehicle but the investment on this petrol engine will turn into profits once other Maruti Suzuki cars and SUVs get the new petrol version.
Maruti Suzuki Ciaz is company's flagship sedan in its portfolio and the introduction of SHVS technology makes the sedan the only one in the segment to get features like regenerative braking, Idle start/stop and torque function assist. Going forward, Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza with this 1.5L K15 petrol engine will soon get these mild hybrid features. However, there is no definite timeline confirmed by the company.
The upcoming 2018 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga will be the next big launch by the company and will get this K15 petrol engine with SHVS technology. The new Ertiga will be launched in India in October 2018. The next big facelift on the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza is expected towards the end of 2019 as the company by then will be ready with its BS-VI fleet. The next Vitara Brezza facelift expected next year will get a petrol engine and the BS-VI compliant diesel engine. There is already a not of anticipation around the launch of the petrol version of the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, but the company will do it in a phased manner.
Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza has been the top-selling UV in the country and despite being sold only with 1.3L DDiS diesel engine option has been very successful. With launches of new sedans, we expect the sales of SUVs in India to dip marginally but SUVs will play a huge role for a company to improve upon its market share. We also expect the Maruti Suzuki S-Cross to get petrol variants but not anytime soon. On the new 2018 Ciaz, the 1.5L petrol engine sheds a power of about 104 hp and 138 Nm of torque and gets the option of both manual and automatic transmission.
For the India car and SUV industry, 2019 will once be a consolidation year as the companies will begin to move its fleet to make it BS-VI compliant. This move will see both manufacturers and suppliers investing heavily to meet the new norms and we also expect the prices of the cars and SUVs to go up starting early 2020.