Maruti Suzuki's compact SUV crossover. concept called the XA Alpha comes at a time when several manufacturers are gearing up to launch cheaper and more compact SUVs. The XA Alpha, rumoured to be a fourth-gen Jimny measures no more than 4-metres in length when it goes into production, therefore gaining from excise duty benefits.
The XA Alpha is a monocoque construction SUV and is not a replacement for the Jimny as was being speculated. It will be primarily two-wheel driven (front wheel driven, that is) and all-wheel drive will be an option. The AWD is expected to be a real time AWD unit. The 1.3 litre Multijet DDiS diesel will definitely be on offer although Maruti Suzuki is reviewing the Government's policy on petrol engines and SUVs before taking a call on petrol engine options. Expect power to vary from 84 to 94 bhp.
The XA-Alpha isn't as in-your-face as the Ford EcoSport in design. It feels and looks more European with straighter panels. The lack of a B-pillar and a Mitsubishi Outlander-like C-pillar enhances the sense of space and ruggedness. The flared wheel arches and large wheels only make the vehicle look more masculine. The XA Alpha is positioned as an "Urban" and "Wild" SUV. The wraparound tail lamps are high-set and the floating grille give the overall concept a rather unique look. Also, an important feature of the design is the floating roof, which draws inspiration
MD and CEO of Maruti Suzuki, Mr Nakanishi said that the company plans to make a serious foray into UVs and SUVs in the future as the company expands to de-risk itself from the small car phenomenon. The company will add a new 1.4-litre petrol motor when it launches the Ertiga MPV on January 6.
The XA Alpha is an open market research concept. Maruti Suzuki will decide the fate of the XA Alpha as per public response at the Auto Expo. Oh, and the X in the name denotes 'crossover' while 'A' is the all-new platform the XA Alpha is based on.