Following the launch of its fourth world strategic model, the Splash, at the 2007 International Motor Show in Frankfurt, the Suzuki Motor Corporation is developing the fifth model some of the design themes of which will be displayed at Auto Expo 2008 in New Delhi in the form of the Concept A-Star.
The Concept A-Star is the first concept car in which designers from Maruti Suzuki India's research-and-development division have been involved from the initial stage for its styling, making the product an excellent showcase of Maruti Suzuki India's capabilities.
The forthcoming production model is an A-segment five-door hatchback reflecting a focus on environmental compatibility and comfort. It will have a newly developed Euro 5-compliant 1.0-litre aluminium petrol engine with CO2 emissions lower than those of European competitors (target: below 109g / km), with a strong emphasis on fuel economy.
The production model inherits some of the design themes of the Concept A-Star and will he manufactured at Maruti Suzuki India's Manesar plant, mainly for sales in Europe and other countries including India. The start of production is scheduled in October 2008. Substantial production for Europe is targeted to start in December 2008, followed by expansion to other markets around the world.
The new 1.0-litre aluminium engine will be produced by Maruti Suzuki India, and a manual transmission for it will be manufactured by Suzuki Powertrain India, a subsidiary of Suzuki Motor Company, located besides Maruti Suzuki India's Manesar plant.
Suzuki Powertrain India produces a 1.3-litre diesel engine, which Suzuki Motors does not plan to use in the new production car in view of the environmental superiority of the new 1.0-
litre petrol engine. Suzuki Motors, however, is looking for options for small diesel engines from Suzuki Powertrain for the future.
Suzuki also plans to invest ¥200 billion for plants in India from 2007 to 2009, including capex for production of the new world strategic model. Also, it plans to expand Maruti Suzuki
India's production capacity to 960,000 units per year by March 2010 in line with growing demand in India and a vision of exporting the new world strategic model from India to markets around the globe.