A 7-seater Wagon R might never be launched in India, but there’s a good chance that Suzuki Swift Hybrid, which shares the powerplant with the Solio seen here, would arrive soon
Suzuki Solio is a 5-seater MPV based on the Wagon R. It is essentially a slightly-stretched out hatchback, thus offering more space in the cabin. Maruti Suzuki had earlier showcased a 7-seater version of the Solio in India during the 2012 Auto Expo, but there has been no official word by the company on the car since. That being said, the car was recently spied during road test in India.
Suzuki Solio (7-seater Wagon R) spied on Indian roads
The car seen above is the 'Bandit' variant and it has been spotted by our friend and avid reader, Vipul Choudhary. He came across the car in Gurugram a few days before the entire country went into a lockdown. This particular car is the third generation Suzuki Solio, which was originally introduced in August 2015. There have been multiple sightings of the car in the past as well, but not all of the test mules are of the 'Bandit' model we see here.
If we were to make an educated guess, we’d say that the Solio Bandit isn’t being tested for an Indian launch. Why is it here then, you ask? Well, it is not uncommon for carmakers to bring in new cars for testing purposes in Indian conditions. The road tests that are conducted are simply for component testing under tough conditions that our road network and climate offer. There have been multiple sightings of the WagonR EV over the years as well, which is only here for the electric powertrain testing.
The Solio MPV is powered by Suzuki's parallel hybrid powertrain
Earlier this year, during the 2020 Auto Expo, Maruti had showcased the Suzuki Swift hybrid, a car capable of returning a staggering fuel economy figure of up to 32 kmpl. With diesel-powered cars now gone, Maruti will focus on electric and hybrid technology. Thus, there’s a good chance that this test vehicle is here for testing Suzuki’s parallel hybrid powertrain for use in the India-bound Swift Hybrid. The Solio Bandit is powered by a 1.2-litre petrol engine, paired to a 5-speed AMT gearbox and a motor/generator unit. The power output is claimed at 91 PS, and the fuel efficiency at, you guessed it, 32 kmpl.