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Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Overview

Alto K10 is basically a more upmarket version of the country’s largest selling car Maruti Suzuki Alto , which was launched in 2006. Despite being better than the Alto, the car couldn’t do as good as the company expected it to do. The engine power, fuel efficiency, drivability and pricing make Alto K10 an easy winner. There are two variants of the K10 available in the market – the Maruti Alto K10 LXi (Rs.3.03 lac) and Maruti Alto K10 VXi (Rs.3.16 lac). Powered with three 1-litre, 998 cc cylinders, the Alto K10 delivers an impressive power and fuel efficiency.

Its K-series engine produces a peak power of 68 PS at 6200 rpm and the maximum torque of 90Nm at 3500 rpm. Coupled with a five-speed cable type manual transmission, the power is transmitted to the front wheels of the car. It returns an impressive mileage of 20.2 kmpl. The overall design of the Alto K10 gets a mild re-treatment with new headlights, front fog lamps, body-coloured bumper, tail lights, tailgate and wheels with full covers. From certain angles, the car resembles more like the old

The interiors of the Alto K10 are simple yet stylish. The new blue-coloured seats are well integrated with headrest. The other rich features include a climate control unit with heater, front power window, electric tripmeter with tachometer, illumining instrument cluster with speedometer, vanity mirror, sun visor, ash tray, accessory socket, cup holder, rear parcel tray and more. It doesn’t come with a stereo system, but has an installation option. With good leg, head and shoulder room, the Alto K10 is just alright in terms of comfort, as you cannot expect much from a car coming at this price.

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Style

So the Alto K10 is a new design which has some interesting elements and others that I don’t know what to make of. The hood, to start off with, I simply love the slightly beefed up bump running through the middle. It’s a very subtle element and one that can easily escape the eye unless viewed from certain angles. It’s a very racy and bold element for a car in this segment but certainly worth applause. After that though there is a bunch of hogwash design elements; large headlamps, a grille split into two sections one narrow and another wide that almost looks comic in some angles, darkened plastic fog lamp inserts etc etc. The smorgasbord continues at the rear where there is hardly anything designer as such. It’s an effective tail end designed to do the right things and that’s that.

The dimensions of the new Maruti Suzuki Alto have changed, though it bears the same chassis as before. So while wheelbase and track stay the same, the length has been reduced by 75mm while height and width have increased by 15mm. The Maruti Suzuki Alto sits on skinny 155/65 R13 tyres that don’t entirely fill the wheel wells but whose principal role isn’t to look good but to enable better efficiency.Check for Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 price in Pune at tryaldrive.

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Space

In the last few years Maruti Suzuki have been developing quality interiors for their cars. And the Alto, even though it is the most affordable or dare I use the word, cheapest car in their portfolio, is no stranger this time around to a fabulous interior makeover. The dashboard now comes in a two tone shade. The top half is a dull charcoal black that sits on a bright and cheerful beige base. This combination is spread all over the cabin with the doors also exhibiting this very smart colour scheme. The highlight of this cabin though is the centre console which is superbly finished and shows off a piano black top layer housing a slick and smart looking audio system. It’s not a very intuitive audio system to use but it looks hot! Below that audio panel is a simple, neat, clean and devoid of any gimmickry air con control panel. Rotary knobs that look good and work smoothly, period. The steering wheel in the new Alto feels very familiar when you place your palms on the wheel though the three spoke design is new since it has to house the airbag module.

Maruti claims the cabin of the Alto is roomier but with a 1.5 centimetre increase in height and width I’m a bit skeptical about this claim. It can only be verified once we get the car for a test and see just how much roomier it is compared to the previous gen car. However to give them the benefit of the doubt, the Maruti engineers worked on reducing the size of the engine bay which theoretically should help them improve in-cabin packaging and space. The seats have been remoulded and at the front the headrest has been integrated into the backrest. For the rear passengers the backrest height has been increased by a few millimetres and knee recesses have been scooped out of the front passenger’s backrest to enhance the sense of space.

However this would have been a much better job if Maruti had to employ an even slimmer seat profile with firmer foam quality to provide better cushioning and support. The only grouse I had with this cabin is that I wish the backrest for the rear passengers was even taller. With my 5’9″ frame perched in that seat, my head had no support from the headrest which barely reached the base of my spine. That’s neither safe nor comfortable. Even my knees weren’t too comfortable in the rear and taller people will have to sit quite upright to fit in.

And finally the boot, the 177 litre cavity isn’t amazing but a low loading lip and flat floor has its practical uses. And more than ever, a car of this size and stature that can still offer a full size spare wheel is just a marvellous value addition in this day and age when even luxury car manufacturers with sedans of enormous proportions fail to do so.To know more details on Maruti Suzuki Alto K10  check Resultmag

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Gearbox

Now coming to the all important part, driving and the highlight in the new Maruti Suzuki Alto is its AMT box. There was a time when customers would have scoffed at the idea of an automatic in this segment. But Maruti have firmly driven home the point that something like the AMT does not deprive the car of the same efficiency as a manual transmission. I really wont dwell much on the manual transmission since the gearbox hasn’t changed and neither has the engine. The new Maruti Suzuki Alto has the same 1.0-litre K10 petrol and it’s more efficient but not more powerful or torquier than before. It’s a remarkably zippy car and one of the few naturally aspirated engines that you really enjoy whipping. Its short quick bursts of power (68PS) peak out at 6,000rpm and almost instantly you hit the rev limit at 6,500rpm. People who have driven this car before will recognise the feeling it stirs, to me it was fun on a completely different level. Being able to snap away from traffic lights quicker than most cars and then watching the expression on their drivers’ faces as a this small car darts away with unbelievable pace is a delight.

What has changed in this drivetrain are certain elements that work along with the engine to get that best in class fuel efficiency of 24.07kmpl as claimed by Maruti Suzuki, a near 15 per cent improvement over the outgoing Alto. To create this result the engine mapping within the ECU has been improved with better algorithms working faster and with more precision to measure out the air fuel intake in every driving condition. Even the new drive by wire throttle body helps get even more well measured and precise information to the ECU to take those fueling decisions. Complementing this effort is a lower kerb weight, 15 kilos have been shaved off compared to the older Alto across all variants. These weight savings have several implications not just in engine performance and efficiency but also in ride and handling.

To come back to the AMT transmission, like in the Celerio this is a unit sourced from Magnetti Marelli. A simple device that takes away the need for a clutch, the AMT transmission offers the choice of an automatic driving mode or a manual mode. In the automatic mode there is just a drive, neutral and reverse selector. In manual mode you can choose the gear you want to be in though while braking or slowing down the system will automatically downshift to the best gear. Upshifting needs manual intervention or you will simply see the tachometer needle bouncing off the redline.

The shift quality isn’t superb or immediate but its comfortable enough without being intrusive. In urban crawl speeds the shift quality is seamless and there really isn’t much to complain about. As speeds increase and you need quicker movement between the gears the shifts are perceptible and with a fraction of a seconds lag. Then it does not feel as seamless and its best to shift into manual mode. One flipside to the AMT is that in fifth gear as your speeds get to three digits the transmission starts jumping between fourth and fifth gears to try and keep the car in the power band and this causes the Alto which sits on skinny 155/55 R13 tyres to get skittish. Not an entirely pleasant situation to be in and we highly recommend you don’t make a foolhardy attempt to reach its top speeds.

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Riding

If there’s one thing the Alto always excelled at, it was ease of driving. That continues on the new Maruti Alto K10 as well. It has great visibility, reasonably light controls and because of its size, it’s not just easy to dart around with in traffic, it’s child’s play to park as well. The ride quality though leaves a little to be desired. The K10 is a light car, and it feels that way over bumpy roads. So, it bounces around and the passengers do get thrown around a bit as well. Also, unlike some other small cars that return a settled, more composed, big car like ride, the Alto feels exactly what it is – a light, small car.

We do love the way the new Maruti Alto K10 handles though. Here the lack of weight comes in handy. It loves to be chucked into corners and one can do it with confidence, aggression and total abandon. It is a proper entertainer on tight twisties. You can also get it to correct its line mid-corner, which for a car meant to deliver ‘kmpl’ over everything else, is a huge plus. It’s not the grippest car you can buy thanks to the narrow tyres, but having less grip in a car which isn’t exactly the epitome of power, we believe, is a good thing; if nothing else, it keeps the driver completely alert and the driving experience enjoyable. Braking thanks to those puny tyres was never going to be outstanding, and it isn’t. But the feel-some and progressive brakes add to the Alto K10’s dynamics.

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Safety

The braking system is very basic, but proficient enough to provide good control. The front and rear wheels have ventilated disc brakes and drum brakes, respectively. Tyres are relatively small, and don’t have any active role in maintaining the balance and stability of the car. All standard safety features are available with its both variants, which include seat belts, child lock, front fog lamps, headlights, engine immobilizer, i-CATS, central locking key off reminder, suspension and braking system. However, the advanced ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) and EBD safety measures are missing from the board.

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Price in Pune

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 On Road Price is 4,02,217/- and Ex-showroom Price is 3,51,787/- in Pune. Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 comes in 6 colours, namely Tango Orange,Silky Silver,Fire Brick Red,Granite Grey,Superior White,Cerulean Blue. Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 comes with FWD with 998 CC Displacement and 3 Cylinders with Maximum Power 67 bhp@6000 rpm and Peak Torque 90 Nm@3500 rpm DRIVE TRAIN FWD and reaches 100 KMPH at N/A . Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 comes with Automatic Transmission with FWD .

Maruti Suzuki Alto K10 Final Thought

Now one could argue that Maruti could have redefined the Alto formula into something more stylish, more feature laden and more spacious. But, if something works so well, is there really a need to reinvent the wheel? Maruti doesn’t seem to think so, and we do agree with it at some level.

After all, the Alto isn’t the best-selling car in the country without reason. It has palatable looks, simple mechanicals, bullet proof reliability and the ability to deliver consistently high fuel economy. Now in the new K10 avatar, Maruti has further refined this package. It is smarter looking, more premium on the inside and it has better ergonomics. Crucially, the fuel efficiency has gone up too. Another winner from Maruti then… we would think so!

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