Launch Drive | Suzuki Balenio
Debuted in 2015, Suzuki has launched their all-new second-generation Baleno (a vehicle we have a very fond relationship with, it was our first test car from the Suzuki brand). In the last 6 years, the model has sold over 1 million units globally with over 14 000 global sales units made per month. Fun fact, there are over 60 000 back order units for the new Baleno in India.
The five-door hatchback segment in SA is quite tough, especially for the ones priced between 220k -300k, and this is where the Baleno triumphs.
On the exterior, the Baleno has been given a new shape, with chrome accents on the front of the face which extends into the front of the face while fog lights also make an appearance. The rear then rounds off with LED taillights. The Suzuki Baleno is available in a variety of colours including five new colours.
The new colours include Celestial Blue Pearl Metallic, Luxe Beige Pearl Metallic, Opulent Red Pearl Metallic, Splendid Silver Pearl Metallic and Grandeur Grey Metallic. The popular Arctic White Pearl and Midnight Black Pearl remain part of the range.
Inside the spacious and comfortable cabin, you will find synthetic leather, and piano black accents and while a 9-inch touchscreen graces the fascia on the GLX model, the GL receives a 7-inch. The new model has Been packed with tech, from heads up displays, smartphone mirroring (both GLX and GL) as well as a 360-degree camera (GLX model) , it’s a massive leap in improvement from its predecessor. Suzuki has added a second full-colour 4.2-inch display in the instrument cluster where the driver can view a range of vehicle information sources.
Powered by a 1.5 litre naturally aspirated petrol engine, the Baleno has been given slight power increases with power now coming in at 77kW/138nm of torque. The engine is paired to either a four-speed automatic gearbox or a five-speed manual gearbox which we found to be a peach during our 150-kilometre drive from King Shaka to Hilton just outside of Pietermaritzburg. The drive is composed, and smooth and while we felt a need for a resting 6th gear, the Baleno took up the various mountain passes, highways as well as town driving with ease. One of the things we have always appreciated about the Baleno was always how frugal it was no matter what was thrown at it. We are glad to report that even in the second generation, this has not changed. We did not try an economical run during our launch drive and the best figures came out to 5.6l/100kms which is not far from the claimed 5.4l/100kms in the manual.
Pricing - 225 900
Suzuki’s popular 5-year / 200 000 km promotional mechanical warranty. This includes unlimited roadside assistance for the same period.
Pricing includes a 4-year / 60 000 km service plan and an anti-corrosion warranty of 6 years and unlimited kilometres.
The Baleno has a 15 000 km service interval.