Maruti Suzuki WagonR has not only been a successful car for the company but is one of the biggest success stories in the Indian automotive history. Quite honestly, I never expected the WagonR to be a blockbuster when I saw it first years back. With its boxy, tall boy design the WagonR was definitely not a car people would find attractive. However, over the years the Wagon R proved me and many others wrong by clocking sales of over 22 lakh units. So what really appealed to the masses of the country for a car that didn't look attractive from any angle? Utility, affordability and versatility is what made the car a winner. Now the company has launched the new 2019 WagonR, which they claim is better in every aspect. So we tried to find out if the new 2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR is any better and if it still has what it takes to set the sales charts on fire.
2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR Design and Looks
In its new avatar, the 2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR retains the tall boy design and boxy look. And while it still might not win any beauty contest Maruti Suzuki has done the right thing by retaining the visual character because why fix something that ain't broke? Moving to a new HEARTECT based platform means that everything on this new model is new including the design. The curvy yet large headlamps along with a chrome strip on the grille give the car a modern and premium look. Dimensionally, the car has grown in all areas and that reflects in the design, something most Indians love. On the side, a strong shoulder line with mildly flared wheel arches gives the car a more energetic stance than earlier. The black plastic inserts before the C-pillar give a floating roof effect and add to the premium quotient.
The rear, however, is my personal favourite because of the new vertical tail lamps. Yeah, yeah, it is reminiscent of Volvo cars but it quite simply looks good! Some bit of chrome on the boot lid along with a new bumper finish up the back. Overall, the new 2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR has definitely improved in terms of looks. It still isn't a pretty car but it looks bigger and more upmarket than ever. With things only having improved, it's a positive takeaway for all new buyers.
2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR Interior, Cabin, Features
The all-new car also gets a brand new cabin and things here have changed drastically. There's a dual tone dashboard in place now to break the monotony of the sea of grey found in the earlier model. Plastic quality is good, although not the best in this price segment. The attention-grabbing feature here is the 17.78 cm infotainment screen, which has a new and colourful interface that's not only pleasing to look at but easy to operate as well. It comes with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and SmartPlay Studio. There's a USB, 12V socket and Aux-in point too so connectivity is now at par with cars from a segment above as well.
The front seats are quite comfortable with good cushioning and smartly integrated storage spaces all around will ensure that long drives will be comfortable. The steering wheel gets audio and telephony controls and the steering wheel itself feels quite nice to hold. Behind the steering wheel, the new instrument cluster with an analogue speedo and digital screen provide easy readouts for info such as engine RPM, average fuel consumption, odometer, trip meter, fuel gauge and more
Move to the rear seat and things get even better. An increase in length, width and wheelbase has resulted in increased legroom. In fact, the rear legroom is more than some premium hatchbacks and sub-compact sedans and will suffice for tall occupants as well. Being a tall boy, headroom again is a lot so people with families are going to love this car. What I think can be better is the under-thigh support, which proved to be adequate for me but can be a bit bothersome for taller occupants.
2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR Engine & Gearbox
Great news for those who found the earlier WagonR to be anaemic in terms of power, especially on highways! While the 1.0 Litre engine is still available the 2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR comes with a new 1.2 petrol engine, which produces about 81 hp and 113 Nm of torque. Pair this to a kerb weight of 845 kg of the top AGS variant and you get a zippy car that can now tackle highways easily. The engine is a smooth operator and even at triple-digit speed, NVH levels are appreciably low. Low-end performance is good, making urban runs convenient.
Helping the engine are the gearboxes, a five-speed manual and a five-speed AGS (Auto Gear Shift), an AMT unit in common terms. Being a first-mover in the AMT space has give Maruti Suzuki more time than other carmakers to tune this technology for Indian conditions, something the WagonR displayed quite nicely. While there's still a perceivable lag between shift, the shift shocks are not much and doing a kick down doesn't send the gearbox into any sort of indecisive state, which is the case with some cars.
Claimed fuel-efficiency is rated at 21.5 kmpl for both manual and AGS variants and these numbers don't seem far fetched. We recorded a system indicated fuel-efficiency of 19.2 kmpl with the majority of the test done on highways. So for all those looking for a car with good drinking habits the new 2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR checks all the right boxes.
2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR Ride and Handling
First things first, the WagonR was never made to win races or thrill drivers so talking about cornering ability is stupidity I choose not to commit. What you do need to know is that the car is more stable than earlier and the brakes too have improved. The car feels less floaty than the older model but past 120 kmph, it does tend to feel iffy, especially due to the light steering with no feedback. In traffic and tight parking spots though this lightness proves to be a boon.
Ride quality is exactly what one would expect from a family mover and is not stiff or overly soft. It's pretty much neutral so it deals with potholes and speedbreakers with ease and absorbs the shocks quite nicely.
2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR Safety
Moving to a new HEARTECT platform has resulted in lighter weight yet improved structural rigidity. Owing to this the energy absorption and dissipation in the event of a crash should be better leading to improved safety. Features like ABS with EBD, driver side airbag, rear parking sensors, speed alert system and seat belt reminder come standard across all variants on the new WagonR.
The 2019 Maruti Suzuki WagonR is definitely a better car than the previous model in every aspect. It is bigger, better, smarter and offers great value-for-money. It has been priced competitively as well between Rs 4.19 to 5.78 lakh, ex-showroom. The highlight, however, of the new WagonR is the fact that it is one of the few cars which serves as a good upgrade for owners of older models. So with the massive customer base of the WagonR brand and an improved car on offer now, it's a no-brainer that this is another blockbuster from Maruti Suzuki!