Since almost 20 years, the Maruti WagonR is a fixture in our lives. The ‘tall boy” has seen 3 generations and 7 models in this time. The hatchback was loved by small families throughout this time.
Even though the last generation WagonR was in showrooms for nine years, it kept finding a place in the top 10 cars every month. Why was the original WagonR so beloved? This is a brief history about the WagonR’s transformation over its two decades of existence. Also Read: Suzuki Alto Price in Pakistan
The WagonR was launched in India in December 1999 to counter the Hyundai Santro. It offered a lot more space and can accommodate taller people. The WagonR was also equipped with power steering, power windows, and an engine of 1061cc that produced 67 PS of power and 12.9 kmpl of fuel efficiency. These features may seem small now but they were a big deal back then.
In 2003, a minor facelift was made to this model. It received a chrome grille and body-colored bumpers (yes they were big back then). Clear-lens tail lights were also added. The interior of the WagonR received a beige dashboard and lots of storage space. It was a 2-spoke steering wheel with sliding controls for AC and heater.
However, the Major facelift was completed in 2006, seven decades after the original. The DUO variant was the biggest and most significant change in WagonR history. The WagonR LPG is now an option. The car’s front styling was completely redesigned and refreshed. The headlamps were redesigned and swept back, as was the grille. It now has horizontal slats with chrome inserts.
LPG was available as a factory fitting. The LPG tank was neatly hidden in the boot and left space for luggage. This was available with the F10D engine versions, which still produced 67PS of power. It gained popularity quickly with its efficiency of 14 km/kg. Safety was another important step. The WagonR received an ABS and driver airbag update. Also Read: Suzuki Alto VXR Price in Pakistan
The all-new WagonR was launched by Maruti on April 23, 2010. The new WagonR was built on a completely new platform. It features a 998cc KB10 cylinder engine with aluminum construction. Maruti Suzuki A-Star. It also offered CNG as a fuel option. It produced 58 PS of power in the CNG variant, and 62PS at 6200rpm with its LPG variant. Maruti later made this the key selling point of its famous advertisement ‘Kitna deti Hai?’.
The car’s original design was retained, but it was completely redesigned to be more upmarket. The WagonR’s wheelbase and length increased to match the Hyundai i10. It received major updates in terms of features with new additions such as ABS, fog lamps, and defoggers. It was a huge hit on the market, thanks to the updated interiors that lasted until the last WagonR.
January 14, 2013 saw the first facelift for this generation. There were cosmetic changes. The vehicle received a narrower grille and new bumpers with larger vents. It also got a new housing for the fog lamp. These changes were made by Maruti to reduce wind noise at higher speeds.
The famous dual glovebox was replaced by a manual day/night IRVM and an integrated Eagle Wings music device with integrated USB-in and AU-in ports. In 2015, this variant was upgraded to an automatic ‘AGS’ variant.
The WagonR Stingray was perhaps the most bold looking and, dare I say, the closest to the Japanese Kei, car. The flagship WagonR Stingray was launched on August 21, 2013. The all-new chrome-finished grille and segment-first projector headlamps, gunmetal gray alloys, side skirts and roof-mounted rear wings made it look premium. These features aren’t even on the 2019 WagonR. Also Read: Suzuki Cultus Price in Pakistan
The cabin was finished in all-black with a tilt-adjustable leather wrapped steering wheel, steering mounted audio controls, Stingray-themed seat clusters, and an electrically adjustable OVRMs. A multi-information display was available for the driver, which displayed information such as distance to empty, fuel efficiency, and instant. The engine’s claimed efficiency was also increased to 20.5 km/l for the kitne deti public.
The Stingray was later renamed to the WagonR VXi+ version on January 27, 2017. The features remained unchanged, but the Stingray badge had to be dropped..