Automobile manufacturers from around the world are in an eco-frenzy right now and everyone is looking for new ways to make their cars more eco friendly and efficient. Everything from all-electric plug in cars, to Hybrids, to solar powered and bio-fuel powered cars are being tested and even launched. BMW launched the i8 and made headlines as it is one of the most fuel efficient cars in the world and yet is one of the fastest too. Even supercar manufacturers like Ferrari, Mclaren and Porsche went the Hybrid way with the La Ferrari, P1 and 918 respectively. Now all this is happening in the European and American region, what about Asia and India then?
Mahindra Reva already has the e2o on sale in India and that is just about it. There has been no successful hybrid which has been made available to the Indian customer except the erstwhile Toyota Prius which was too expensive and didn’t sell at all and the current Toyota Camry hybrid is very expensive too, so what is the solution then? Enter, the king of small car manufacturing, Maruti Suzuki.
Maruti Suzuki is trying to make Hybrid technology in India Accessible to the common man, and in this pursuit, they have developed the Swift Range extender/Swift Hybrid. We had written about the Swift Hybrid when it was displayed at the Indian Auto Expo in Delhi, and now we are writing about it again because Maruti Suzuki seems to have fully developed the Swift Hybrid and it is ready for launch, well at least the pictures say so.
The engineers at Maruti Suzuki have been hard at work, developing the Swift Hybrid and it looks like it is ready for production. We have spy shots of the Maruti Suzuki swift range extender which has been spotted on public roads and just about to enter the Maruti Suzuki production facility. The cars look production ready as they are seen, not wearing any sort of camouflage and is complete with the Swift Hybrid paint job with the Yellow Roof top and even the alloy wheels the cars were running on, seem ready to hit the production line. This makes me wonder, what is really stopping Maruti Suzuki from putting the Swift Range extender into production.
The cars, yes there are two cars spotted in the picture. The cars were spotted on the 5th of June, making us speculate that the cars were out for the FAME India Eco Drive, which was part of World environment day celebrations. But, it still is a speculation and Maruti Suzuki has not issued a statement about this yet.
The Maruti Suzuki Swift Range Extender is powered by a Hybrid Drivetrain which includes a 3-cylinder, 658cc petrol engine to drive the generator and electric motors to drive the wheels. The petrol engine is used to charge the battery which drives the motor at the wheels of the car. So it is like an all-electric car, but with an onboard generator, so you will never run out of charge in the batteries.
The electric motors produce 73 BHP at the wheels and the car is expected to return 48-50 kilometres for every litre of petrol when used in Hybrid Mode. When run on pure electric mode though, the batteries run flat in around 25.5 kilometres. The empty batteries would then take around 1.5 hours to recharge when plugged in to a 200V electricity socket.
If Maruti Suzuki makes maintenance and repair of this hybrid affordable to the masses, I do not see even a single reason as to why it shouldn’t be a super hit in our market. And since it is Maruti Suzuki we are talking about here, I am pretty sure that it will not be expensive to purchase and maintain.
Eagerly waiting for the launch of the Swift Hybrid.
To read more on Maruti Swift Hybrid, Click here