ALTO: The Top Choice in the Entry-Level Car Segment

Last Updated: 30 Mar 2023
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There are many cars on the market that are exciting with respect to power(Accord), interior design(Octavia, Benz), overall execution(again Accord) & the vitality in the segment they play in (New City) but no other car is as close to what ALTO is in the entry level segment. Santro & Indica do have a strong hold on the upper level where Alto plays (Alto 1. 1) but with respect to the range that Alto has from mid 2 to low 4 lac it is the only choice. August 05 Alto is being launched with better styling (clear head-tail lamps), changed nose and a few more vibrant colors to make matters interesting.

The seat fabric have received an upgrade. Although Swift continues to take limelight, guess Alto is serving Maruti and entry level buyers just fine. I wish they again launch it with the 1. 1 liter engine. Given that Alto has longer wheelbase and (more) modern chassis than Zen it would kill Zen’s sales if launched with 1. 1 liter engine. June 04: For the first time ever a model (Alto) outscored 800 on the sales chart. This is due to Maruti positioning Alto as entry level car & in order to phase out 800 & also they slashed entry level price by 25,000 (without AC) at 2,34,000. Recently I had a test ride of a used Alto 1. without power steering. The car was in a good condition. I really liked the power of 1. 1 engine. With 4 passengers it was pulling very well. The transmission was typical Maruti/Suzuki, a little rough but spot-on. As I am used to Palio’s butter smooth gears I found the gears in Alto a little crude but accurate & easy to locate specially from 2nd to 3rd, it is easy to find it. Although I have heard a few complaints from some owners about Grinding noises from transmission. So better watch-out for that. The AC was good enough but left me for wanting as it was VERY hot. Also with AC on the acceleration suffered a bit.

Can’t blame as I had 4 full grown adults with me! :) Overall I was very satisfied but when finally we sat for negotiations the Doctor was asking a little too much than I thought a used Alto should cost. This led to me test drive of the new Alto (800), at 2,60 it was very close to the used 1. 1! The test drive without AC was very good but with AC full blown the acceleration did suffer significantly. So I tried shutting off AC when I was speeding & then started it when cruising, it worked just fine. I thought I can manage with this power by effectively shutting off AC when I needed to Pass & on inclines (valleys etc).

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The interior was a bit lacking compared to Palio & also Santro but at this price point it did meet my expectations. It is only a matter of getting used to. I didn’t like the shifter coming out of teh floor as opposed to much better treatment in Palio/Santro. Here in Alto it seem to come out of the floor! :) But not a point that would affect my decision. The interior room is satisfactory if not significant. 4 Adults can fit in for trips of say 3/4 hrs with some halts. The seats themselves are good & I found a very comfortable seating position except some room for my legs as I am 6’ 1’ with the legs of same length as of my 6’ 3’ friend! ) The fuel economy I was told as phenomenal with at least 14 in city & 17-18 on the highways! That was MUCh better than 10/14 of my Palio. As this car is for my father I thought he would get a little better than what I can extract! Driving style you know! :) I was a bit concerned about the tire size & thought for a longer trips bigger tires would be preferable but it would affect the fuel economy I guess. You can’t have all!! The styling is conservative but tasteful for the common man who thinks that car is an extension of their personality. The fashion seekers should shop elsewhere.

Both front & rear styling is interesting enough but at the same time toned down to take out the last drop of boldness.. The car looks much better with body colored bumpers than the ugly black ones! They look like an accessory externally attached than the integral part of the car! Only black car looks ok with those bumpers. Anyways, who buys a black color car in a counry of hot summer! :) (There are quite a few mind you! ) I am almost set on Alto 800. I compared it with all the competition & it bits the competition when you factor in the price & daily running costs (fuel/maintenance) & have decided to go for Alto 800 Lxi.

I think it is worth to pay for the extra features for some price. At the same time I didn’t think it was a good idea to spend more than 4 lac for 1. 1 as I thought the level of interior materials & overall comfort would be more justified in Santro/Indica/Palio for a little more cash. Fuel economy is again where Alto 1. 1 would do better than most though. The color availability is again ok for this price range. I would love to see more colors coming out soon to keep interest in the product. I would recommend Alto to anyone planning to buy a entry level car.

It is a must to have a loot at this car before buying any other car you like. This is the perfect as far as the segment it plays in goes. MARUTI UDYOG LIMITED – Managing competition successfully Maruti Udyog Limited (MUL) was established in Feb 1981 through an Act of Parliament, to meet the growing demand of a personal mode of transport caused by the lack of an efficient public transport system. It was established with the objectives of - modernizing the Indian automobile industry, producing fuel efficient vehicles to conserve scarce resources and producing indigenous utility cars for the growing needs of the Indian population.

A license and a Joint Venture agreement were signed with the Suzuki Motor Company of Japan in Oct 1983, by which Suzuki acquired 26% of the equity and agreed to provide the latest technology as well as Japanese management practices. Suzuki was preferred for the joint venture because of its track record in manufacturing and selling small cars all over the world. There was an option in the agreement to raise Suzuki’s equity to 40%, which it exercised in 1987. Five years later, in 1992, Suzuki further increased its equity to 50% turning Maruti into a non-government ganization managed on the lines of Japanese management practices.

Maruti created history by going into production in a record 13 months. Maruti is the highest volume car manufacturer in Asia, outside Japan and Korea, having produced over 5 million vehicles by May 2005. Maruti is one of the most successful automobile joint ventures, and has made profits every year since inception till 2000-01. In 2000-01, although Maruti generated operating profits on an income of Rs 92. 5 billion, high depreciation on new model launches resulted in a book loss.


The Evolution

Maruti’s history of evolution can be examined in four phases: two phases during pre-liberalization period (1983-86, 1986-1992) and two phases during post-liberalization period (1992-97, 1997-2002), followed by the full privatization of Maruti in June 2003 with the launch of an initial public offering (IPO). The first phase... Hindustan Construction Co. Ltd. Hincon House, LBS Marg, Vikhroli (W) Mumbai - 400083 email: corpcomm@hccindia. com Tel: +91 22 25775959 Fax: +91 22 25775732 Hindustan Construction Co. Ltd. 706-707, 7th Floor Surya Kiran, 19, KG Marg New Delhi - 110001 Tel: +91 11 23358717, 23358727 Fax: +91 11 23358837

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ALTO: The Top Choice in the Entry-Level Car Segment. (2018, Feb 04). Retrieved from

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