The Baleno sits above the Swift in Suzuki’s line-up. It’s 3995mm long, 1745mm wide and 1470mm high - so longer and wider than its baby brother, but with a slightly lower roofline. It trumps the Swift on boot space with 355 litres, a figure that’s also well clear of the capacity offered by the Ford Fiesta or a VW Polo.
The new car sits on an all-new platform that’s likely to underpin a new baby SUV and the successor to the Swift. It features MacPherson struts at the front and a torsion beam set-up at the rear.
The engine line-up for the Baleno comprises Suzuki’s 1.2-litre Dualjet motor with 89bhp and 89lb ft, and the firm’s new 1.0-litre three-cylinder turbocharged unit, dubbed Boosterjet. It produces 110bhp and 125lb ft of torque between 2000 and 3500rpm.
The Baleno line-up also gets a mild hybrid edition - called SHVS, it mixes an integrated starter generator with the 1.2-litre engine, and helps the Baleno to move away from a standstill. Suzuki claims the system also gives a smoother restart in stop-start situations, because the engine uses starter generator’s belt-drive start instead of a conventional starter motor.
The standard transmission is a five-speed manual, although the Dualjet is also offered with a CVT gearbox and the Boosterjet is available with a conventional six-speed automatic. The Dualjet SHVS hybrid is the cleanest model in the line-up at launch, with CO2 emissions of 93g/km. The regular manual Dualjet emits 101g/km, while the more powerful Boosterjet manual emits 103g/km.