The go-to van for commercial purposes in India, the Omni and Eeco have served well and with the new design for the minivan it may do better for personal use.
The Maruti Suzuki van has been an integral part of the motor industry in the country, initially with the Omni and later with the Eeco, the van has supported innumerable other industries and businesses. Launched all the way back in 1984, and going through major changes the Omni dominated the MPV segment for a very long time until the economy opened up and let other global manufacturers enter. Then came the Eeco which was introduced in 2010 and till today remains the only proper van to be sold in the country, but the design is old now and Suzuki might be looking to upgrade it considering the tough competitions that commercial vehicles from Mahindra and Tata are posing.
In Japan, the native country of Suzuki, the company makes something called the Every Wagon, which is a renamed version of the earlier Suzuki Carry on which the Omni was based. Soon the design may be headed for India, this van is much higher than either Omni or the Eeco, which plays an important part because the seats are bigger and better, so the headroom is necessary. The front fascia is bold, with the large grille that looks similar to the Suzuki Stingray along with the boxy shaped headlamps, both are placed much higher on the front which gives the car a bigger stance.
On the inside, it resembles the current gen of Suzuki vehicles, but the gear shift is mounted on the front of the dash, clearing the area in the middle of the footwell, making it possible to seat even three in the front. The vehicle in its standard form comes with separated seats, all four which makes configuration inside the van very easy, but for India the van will come with bench seats or an empty cargo area. It features better interiors than the present car, although not tilting towards the luxury side. Touch infotainment systems are available too.
The Every Wagon uses a VVT engine which is turbocharged to make 63hp which is weaker than the Indian Eeco, but it may be expected that Maruti will bump up the power at least for the commercial versions. Currently not having any competition, in its particular segment the Eeco has performed well, and provides very standard performance suitable for fleet operators. With the new design from Japan, the van may gain traction with non-commercial buyers, if it is brought here with the same features it is sold with in Japan like the comfortable seats and infotainment systems.
The Eeco is currently sold in India starting INR 4.5 lacs and goes up to 6 lacs for the CNG variant, the new vehicle should be priced similarly. Though this Every wagon starts at Rs. 11 lakh in Japan.
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