Maruti Suzuki Baleno, the popular premium hatchback from the Indo-Japanese carmaker, recently crossed the one lakh domestic sales milestone. Launched in October 2015, the Baleno has completed a year in the Indian car market and has been one of the top-sellers in Maruti Suzuki’s line-up. In addition to domestic sales, 33,800 Baleno cars have been exported from India to global markets like Japan and Europe.

The Baleno, which is exclusively manufactured in India, is also the first car to be exported from the country to Japan. Maruti Suzuki plans to export the car to 100 international markets. Apart from Japan, the vehicle is being exported to Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Latin America.

Sharing his views on this latest feat, Maruti Suzuki’s Executive Director Marketing & Sales, R S Kalsi, said, “Baleno is one of the big success stories of the Indian auto industry. Baleno carries our new design philosophy and is equipped with several high-end features and technologies like Apple CarPlay that have attracted young customers. Our engineers have ensured that built on an innovative new platform, Baleno offers superior ride and handling, besides best-in-class fuel efficiency. Safety features like dual airbags and ABS with EBD are standard in Baleno – another first for this segment. It is truly a symbol of Make-in-India.”
The point to be noted here is that rival Hyundai i20, launched in August 2014, achieved the same feat in about the same time, which shows both the cars have been quite popular among buyers. Besides the one lakh Baleno cars sold, many customers have placed orders for the car and it currently commands a waiting period of four to six months depending on the variant. Commenting on that Kalsi said, “I express gratitude to all these customers. This reflects their trust in Baleno. We have optimised our production so that we can deliver their cars in the committed timeframe while ensuring the highest levels of quality”.

The Baleno has also played a key role in increasing the popularity of Maruti’s premium dealership outlet – NEXA Experience, which exclusively retails the Baleno and S-Corss. Maruti also plans to launch a performance-spec version of the car, Baleno RS, which is expected to go on sale in India later this year.