Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Facelift First Drive Review

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800  Test Drive

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Overview

If ever there was a car that could be labelled an ‘undisputed king’, the Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 is it.

Ever since its arrival in 2012 as a modern-day equivalent of the original 800, this cutesy looking hatch has played the role of India’s favourite small car. However, what this also means is that the Alto 800 is nearly half a decade old now and that the small car goalposts have well and truly moved over that period. So much so that buyers now seek high-end convenience and as many features for as little outlay as possible. Keeping that in mind, Maruti Suzuki has given the Alto 800 a mild facelift, one that comes with a revised front-end look, reupholstered interior, couple of vibrant colours and most importantly, a more efficient engine. Check for car loan interest rate.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Style

The front fascia is where the majority of the changes have been done. Rather going for the thin chrome grille with body colored slat, the carmaker has given a solid piece of plastic that neatly flows between the headlights and the airdam. Due to the updated front, the car looks wider in proportion. The headlamps cluster now features amber-colored housing for the turn indicators. The automaker has included fog lamps which were not there in the earlier model.

The side profile is similar and showcases the simple straight shoulder line. The rear end features crystal-like tail lamps and some sculpting which are carried forward from the previous model. The bumper design is also the same with the space for registration plate carved out at the bottom. Overall, there are changes at outside but to find out what’s everything new, you need to be an Alto fan.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Space

One needs to bend quite a bit to get into the Alto, but once seated, you’ll appreciate how engineers liberated a decent amount of cabin space from the tight exterior dimensions. Visibility from the driver’s seat is good but the window line at the shoulder point could have been lower. Though, the Alto 800 does feel bare-basic and built to a price point, the build quality throughout the cabin is consistent. There’s space for all your knick-knacks in the centre console and it even accommodates a one-litre bottle. However, the door pads are good for documents or other slim accessories only.

On the plus side, Maruti has updated the 2016 Alto 800 with fresh fabric schemes and a new rear head-rest design. While the front seats do offer a firm and rudimentary amount of back support, they hardly propose any thigh and lateral support, and are also totally flat and devoid of any contours. The crouching position, with the low seat and high floor line can get tiring over long drives. It is the same story with the rear seats too and there’s just the elementary amount of cushioning, headroom and legroom to get the commute done with. Three adult passengers should be a tight fit here.

Variants offered by Maruti Suzuki on the Alto 800 2016 version are Std, LX, LXi and VXi. Each of these variants is now also available with an ‘O’ version, which adds a driver airbag as an extra safety feature. On the whole, features that now make to the Alto 800 2016 model are the integrated music system with two front speakers, aux and USB, an accessory socket, rear parcel tray, rear console bottle holder, remote keyless entry, driver airbag in all ‘O’ versions, and a rear door child lock. For more details on Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 check Aryavarta

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Performance

The 796cc petrol motor and 5-speed manual gearbox from the old car have been reserved for the facelifted model. This is the same 3-cylinder unit that’s been around for many years and in its latest application, puts out 47bhp at 6,000rpm and 69Nm of torque at 3,500rpm. That doesn’t translate into a rapid, tyre-smoking small car by any means, but the combination fares well where it matters i.e. the daily grind.

There’s considerable torque low down the rev range, so driving in stop/start traffic or overtaking within city limits is not an issue unless the car is fully loaded. The engine is not only suitably torquey in low and mid-range but also very refined – it’s comparatively less noisy under heavy acceleration than the Kwid or the Redi-Go. In fact, the Alto 800’s upper hand in performance was apparent during our small car shootout wherein it was noticeably quicker than the Kwid and the Eon, hitting the 0-100kmph mark in 17.09 seconds and taking just 13.30 seconds in 20-80kmph roll-on in third gear.

For a micro runabout, the electrically-assisted steering is a bit heavy but there’s a lot of feedback to be had. The Alto 800 handles really well for a budget small car, with the steering being decently responsive. As expected, the car requires small yet constant corrections to keep straight at highway speeds but for the most part, the steering is swift enough to feel agile and nicely weighted for that all-important reassuring feel behind the wheel. As for the ride quality, the facelifted model feels just like old car. What this means is that you get a very flat low-speed ride with minimum vertical movements over poor stretches. Make no mistake, the Alto 800 is stiffly sprung and as you up the pace you can sense sharp jolts over bumpy roads.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Driving

Maruti’s Alto 800 also rolls quite a bit, and the slim tyres don’t really inspire a whole lot of confidence in one. That aside, the brakes are adequate to get the job done at reasonable speeds with an appropriate amount of feedback. At slower speeds, the ride quality with its stiff suspension setup translates into a lot of vertical movement over undulations, and bumps can be felt and heard with a jerk. Increase the speed and the car tends to ride flatter over slight undulations, but any bumps or potholes can be felt in the cabin with some uncomfortable vertical movement. In fact, driving over a series of small speed breakers (rumblers) without slowing down can get the car displaced from the intended line of motion, and needs extra caution.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Safety

The braking responsibilities of Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 are well taken care of by disc brakes in the front and drum brakes at the rear. The safety features of the car include 2 airbags for the driver and co-driver. What comes as standard is the ABS with EBD, engine immobiliser, speed alert system, headlight levelling, high mounted stop lamp, speed belt reminder and reverse parking sensors. The all-new Alto 800 is offering tubeless tyres for maximum protection on any type of road. The front wipers and washer are 2 speed and intermittent for front mirror cleansing. The car also features RR seatbelts ELR type for better safety.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Cost in Ahmedabad

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 On-Road Price in Ahmedabad ranges from 3,04,978 to 4,42,867 for variants Alto 800 Standard and Alto 800 LXI CNG Optional respectively. Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 is available in 10 variants and 6 colours. Below are details of Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 variants price in Ahmedabad. Check for Maruti Alto 800 price in Ahmedabad at Autozhop.

Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 Conclusion

There’s not much persuasion needed to convince one that this segment now looks fresh thanks to the Renault Kwid and Datsun’s Redigo. Of course, Maruti’s little update job on this car may have just earned it some more time on the buyers list. However, our market is now all the more ready for products like the Kwid and Redigo, as they tick off the aspirational and emotional quotient within one. Nevertheless, the Alto 800 is a tried and tested package, with bullet-proof reliability and a predictably wide service network. But, will this be enough to retain customers or loyalists? Only time can tell.

Maruti Alto 800 is offered in 4 variants they are STD, LX, LXI, and VXI. Taking a quick glance at the pricing, its base variant is priced at Rs. 2.51 Lakh, LX trim is tagged at Rs. 2.83 Lakh while the top spec CNG LXI optional is available at the price tag of Rs. 3.78 lakh. Its mid-range, as well as the top selling variant LXI, is tagged at Rs. 3.09 lakh, all prices ex-showroom, Delhi. Maruti 800 competes against the entry-level hatchbacks including Hyundai Eon, Renault Kwid, and Datsun Redi-GO.

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