Maruti Suzuki has entered the red hot hatch battle being fought on Indian shores with the new Baleno RS which was unveiled at the 2016 Auto Expo.
With enough power to push the Scorpion-badged Abarth and the Polo GT to their limits, the new Baleno RS sure looks like it has the goods to deliver the hot hatch segment to Maruti.
But can it deliver on its promises? Keep on reading our first impressions review of the new Maruti Baleno RS and find out.
Maruti Suzuki Baleno RS Exterior And Interior Design
The new Baleno RS looks quite similar to the Baleno hatch it is based on.
Looks wise it hasn't changed much on the outside with a few minor changes to both front and rear bumpers, a spoiler on the roof, black alloy wheels and a RS badge on the back.
The interiors though see quite a few changes. First Maruti has put an all black interior.
The front seats have been replaced with sports seats and there is a new flat-bottomed steering wheel which give the car a rather sporty feel.
Also new is the touchscreen infotainment system which has integration for Apple CarPlay.
Performance & Mileage Of The Baleno RS
The biggest change in the Baleno RS compared to the normal Baleno hatch is under the hood.
The Baleno RS is powered by a 3-cylinder turbocharged 1-liter BoosterJet engine which produces 110bhp @5,500rpm and 170Nm of torque @2,000rpm, all of which is sent to the front wheels through a 5-speed manual gearbox.
This engine can send the Baleno RS to 100km/h from a standstill in 12 seconds and can hit a top speed of 200km/h. All this should appeal to the performance enthusiast who wants a car that he/she can drive in the city with ease.
With its brand new engine the Baleno RS has the grunt to take on the likes of the Polo GT from Volkswagen and the Fiat Punto Abarth.
The new Baleno RS is expected to launch in India during the Dusshera-Diwali holiday season and Maruti is will be selling the new hot hatch through their NEXA dealerships.
Maruti-Suzuki are expected to price the Baleno RS aggressively and can really hurt their rivals with the new Baleno RS which to us looks like a sure shot winner.