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Maruti Suzuki has discontinued the BS4-compliant Baleno RS hatchback until mandatory introduction of strict BS6 emission standards as of April 1st 2020. Earlier in 2017, the Baleno RS made its debut solely with the 1.0-liter Boosterjet turbo petrol engine from Suzuki. It was the honest attempt by the brand to penetrate the less popular Indian market hot-hatch segment.
With the exception of the likes of the Tata Tiago JTP and the discontinued Abarth Punto, India's hot-hatch market may not have a proper portfolio of driver-focused hatchbacks compared with global standards. Standard turbo-petrol hatchbacks with a more sporty appearance in the Indian scenario and no internal modifications to back up the' hot-hatch' name generally come under the label. The Volkswagen Polo GT TSI and, of instance, the Maruti Baleno RS are prime examples of this.
This way, ultimately the Baleno RS became a market failure for the company. In the sportier version of the regular Baleno hatchback prospective buyers of Maruti Suzuki products could not see a desirability factor. In comparison to the old Swift RS which came with a few cosmetic updates in a tasteless combination of paint and graphics, the fact that Maruti Suzuki at least tried to make the' RS' logo a little important by hiring another power plant deserves some recognition.
The Maruti Suzuki Baleno RS hires a 1.0-liter three-cylinder turbo petrol engine in its outgoing BS4 configuration that churns out torque of 102bhp and 150Nm. In contrast the new stock Baleno BS6 avatar comes with two versions of the tested 1.2-liter NA four-cylinder petrol engine: 82bhp (standard) and 89bhp (mild-hybrid). The torque is the same for both 113Nm and a 5-spee configurations.
Maruti Suzuki officially moves its focus away from diesel engines, at least in the lower price ladder segments. The BS4-compliant 1.3-liter four-cylinder diesel engine from FCA may not stay on the market for a long time for the same reason. In reality, earlier this month even FCA officially stopped producing "the national diesel engine." Sometime in the future we would like to see the Boosterjet engine making a comeback in a new BS6 avatar.