Sales of Maruti-Suzuki Wagon-R crosses 15 Lakh units in India

It was 1998. The conventional mindset of prospective car-buyers in India was shattered by a tall-boy from Korea called Santro which, in the process, started nibbling at big chunks of Maruti's market share. The top honchos at Maruti Udyog Limited, which is how Maruti-Suzuki was called then, had to bring in something to challenge the Korean upstart Hyundai. The prevailing 'kei' car regulations in Japan meant that they had a whole lot of Suzuki models to choose from for the job. That's probably how the Wagon-R found its way to India, with Maruti launching it in the country in 2000.

It wasn't exactly an electrifying launch so to say, with Maruti's 800 and Zen proving to be way more popular than the new Wagon-R in the initial days and weeks. Gradually, visitors to Maruti showrooms started realizing the practicality of Wagon-R's tall-boy styling and the space and comfort it offered in such a small footprint. Popularity rose, sales soared and soon the Wagon-R was a regular fixture at the top of the sales charts. Sales zoomed past 1 Lakh units in financial year 2003-04, followed by 5 Lakh and 10 Lakh milestones in 2007-08 and 2011-12 respectively. Earlier this week, cumulative sales of the car crossed 15 Lakh units, a milestone that puts the Wagon-R amongst the all-time best-selling cars in India.

Almost 15 years after launch, the Wagon-R is still a best-seller and is close on the heels of Maruti-Suzuki's other top-sellers, the Alto, Swift and Dzire. With still a full month to go, Wagon-R's sales has already exceeded 93,000 units in 2014. For it's part, Maruti-Suzuki has ensured that the car stays fresh and relevant, by doling out facelifts, new variants and limited editions at regular intervals. The second-generation model was launched in 2010-11 and the upmarket 'Stingray' variant was launched last year.

The 998 cc K-series engine under the hood of the current Wagon-R generates a maximum power of 68 PS @ 6200 rpm and a peak torque of 90 Nm @ 3500 rpm. CNG and LPG fuel options are also available, making the Wagon-R a versatile option in the fuel-conscious small car segment. With sales showing no signs of slowing down, we are sure this tall-boy from Japan is set for more milestones in India.

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