The strategic alliance between Maruti Suzuki and Toyota aims to promote a mutual supply of vehicles in India and globally. Maruti Suzuki plans to launch an MPV based on the new Toyota Innova Hycross as part of this collaboration. The MPV, Invicto, will be based on Toyota’s TNGA-C platform and is expected to be the most expensive product in Maruti Suzuki’s portfolio.
According to Shashank Srivastava, the Executive Director of Maruti Suzuki India Ltd., the company has been focusing on offering premium and lifestyle products to customers. They have identified a segment of premium three-row vehicle buyers with similar requirements, motives to buy, and income categories as MPV and SUV buyers.
In terms of design, Maruti Suzuki will likely incorporate its design language while retaining the front grille based on the Grand Vitara. The interior layout and technology will be similar to the ongoing Innova Hycross. The engine and powertrain options will be borrowed from the Hycross as well.
Variants, Price and Competition
The first option will be a solid hybrid 2.0-litre engine producing 183hp, paired with an e-CVT transmission. The second option will be a non-hybrid efficient 2.0-litre petrol unit producing 173hp, likely offered on entry-level trims with a CVT transmission.
The price of the non-hybrid version of the Invicto is expected to be around 18 lakhs, while the stable hybrid version is estimated to cost above 25 lakhs.
Pros of Maruti Suzuki Invicto:
1. Premium Offering: The Invicto is positioned as a premium MPV, catering to customers looking for a higher-end, three-row vehicle. It offers a more upscale and luxurious experience than other models in Maruti Suzuki’s portfolio.
2. Strategic Alliance: The collaboration between Maruti Suzuki and Toyota brings together their respective expertise and resources, which can result in a well-engineered and high-quality product. The Invicto benefits from Toyota’s renowned reliability and engineering.
3. Choice of Powertrains: The Invicto offers a choice between a robust hybrid and a non-hybrid petrol engine. The hybrid powertrain provides improved fuel efficiency and reduced emissions, while the non-hybrid option may appeal to customers who prefer a more traditional powertrain.
4. Spacious and Versatile: As an MPV, the Invicto is designed to provide ample space for passengers and cargo. The three-row configuration ensures comfortable seating for all occupants, and the versatile interior layout allows for flexible seating and cargo arrangements.
Cons of Maruti Suzuki Invicto:
1. Pricing: The Invicto is expected to be the most expensive product in Maruti Suzuki’s lineup. While it offers a premium experience, the higher price tag may limit its accessibility to a broader range of customers.
2. Brand Perception: Maruti Suzuki is primarily known for its affordable and value-oriented vehicles. The entry into the premium segment with Invicto may require the company to work on establishing its credibility and reputation among customers who associate the brand with budget-friendly options.
3. Competition: Invicto faces competition from established players in the premium MPV segment, including the Toyota Innova, which enjoys a strong reputation and customer loyalty. Convincing customers to choose Invicto over competitors may be a challenge.
4. Limited Customization: Since the Invicto is a rebadged version of the Toyota Innova Hycross, there may be limited options for customization and personalization. Customers who value individuality and customization options may find this limiting.
The merits and drawbacks of the Maruti Suzuki Invicto can only be assessed once it is officially launched and customer feedback is public.
The success of Maruti Suzuki’s Invicto will depend on how well it competes against the established reputation of Innova, and the strategic partnership between the two manufacturers will be tested over time.