Now the car behind me doesn’t need an introduction, it’s one of the most popular vehicles sold in India, and it also held the title of the highest-selling car in India. It is claimed that nearly 100 units of this are sold every hour, which means that by the time you are done reading this review, Maruti Suzuki would have already sold plenty of these. So although it needs no introduction, as an auto reviewer, it’s my job to introduce you to this all-new Maruti Suzuki Alto K10.
2022 Alto K10 – Design Talk
Let us begin by talking about the overall design of the Alto K10 because you guys really love it already, don’t you? Personally, I like the compact dimensions that it has retained while also slightly modernizing its looks. Towards the front, the design is tweaked with a newly designed headlight, a massive hexagonal grille, and a tweaked front bumper with fake budges that mimic ducts at the front. Shifting my focus to the side profile of the Alto K10 and the first thing you are bound to notice are the 13-inch steel wheels with a plastic wheel cover. Furthermore, it bears some resemblance to the Celerio, which is good if you ask me.
Nonetheless, you have a sharp shoulder line running across the vehicle’s width and a body line towards the bottom of the Alto K10, which adds some pizazz to an otherwise bland side profile. Of course, now there are subtle ways of cutting costs and not-so-subtle methods, and the plastic mirror caps are certainly something of the latter. The rear, too, is quite simple, with the biggest talking points being the funky-looking taillights and two parking sensors in the redesigned rear bumper.
2022 Alto K10 – Stepping Inside
Swing open the doors and the interiors, and you’ll be welcomed by a sea of change. For starters, the dashboard design is revised, and the overall layout of where everything went is also changed. Just like you’d expect from a car of this price point, the plastics are hard and feel cheap but the build quality feels quite robust. Talking about features, we Indians love our features and to keep the masses happy, Maruti has added a few things, such as a 7.0-inch touchscreen with its Android Auto/Apple Carplay and Maruti’s SmartStudio. For the driver, there is a digital speedometer with steering with audio controls, which does make the interiors slightly more modern. But honestly, Maruti could have added more features such as auto folding OVRMS, power windows in the rear and not just the front and also an exterior boot release, but again, they chose not to, and most people wouldn’t even mind it.
While people might neglect all those things, pitchforks would have been raised if Maruti had tampered with the space offered inside. With the new Heartect architecture, the dimensions of the Alto K10 have increased compared to its older sibling. All that space now amounts to wider and deeper footwells. The front and rear seats offer great support and have good cushioning, and even the rear seats have just enough recline to make you feel comfortable enough. Just like before, three passengers would struggle to sit in the rear seat owing to the lack of shoulder room. But even tall passengers would not be left wanting for knee room and headroom at the back. Furthermore, thanks to the large windows, the passengers in the rear wouldn’t feel cramped up either. Last but not least, to transport your luggage, a 214-litre boot which can be expanded by folding down the rear seats to make more room if you have to.
2022 Alto K10 – How does it drive?
For 2022, the changes on the Alto K10 are not only on the outside; the powertrain has also been changed. It now comes with the 1.0-litre Dual Jet petrol with 66bhp and 89 Nm. There’s not much in the way of sound deadening, so the motor is always audible, but vibrations through the wheel and pedals are very well controlled. This can be had with a 5-speed manual or the 5-speed AGS (automatic) transmission. ‘Kitna Deti Hai?’ that is the first question we all have, don’t we, and even, in this case, it might be lingering in your head. Maruti claims that the Alto K10 can do 24.39 km/l in the manual guise or 24.90 km/l in the automatic guise.
With that out of the way, let us focus on the driving aspect of the Alto K10. Talking about the performance, it feels like a small peppy Maruti but that is about it. It won’t blow your mind away, but it has quite a decent amount of grunt to make you wiz through city traffic and also, out on the highway, the engine can keep you cruising at highway speeds with ease. I got to experience the 5-speed manual only, and to my surprise, the clutch was light, allowing for smooth gear shifts. Also, owing to the long gear ratios, you don’t need to keep shuffling between gears since power is readily available in every gear. If you have been a passenger in the older Alto K10, you will agree with me that earlier the suspension setup wasn’t the best. But now, with a revised suspension, the Alto K10 doesn’t feel rough anymore, even on bad patches of road. It makes the car feel a whole lot planted and doesn’t unsettle easily.
2022 Alto K10 – Is it safe?
Ah, here is something Maruti Suzuki is known to be notorious for. With the Alto K10, they have tried to show the people that they take safety seriously. For instance, you get disc brakes at the front and drums at the rear, ABS and EBD, but most importantly, the government-mandated dual airbags for the front are all offered. But I feel Maruti could have gone a step further and added a rear de-fogger, dimming rearview mirrors and maybe more. Nonetheless, this will be answered only when the results for the crash test arrive.
Verdict – Should you buy one?
Having not driven the Alto K10 before, I always wondered why it was so popular, but now I have that answered. With prices starting at Rs 3.99 lakh and going to Rs 5.48 lakh, it certainly is pretty cheap and offers a value-for-money proposition for people looking to buy it. Since I am spoilt with luxury in most cars I review, I will complain about the bare minimum features that Maruti gives with the Alto K10, but for someone looking to not shell out their life savings to buy a car, this makes complete sense.
Putting it in simple terms, anyone looking to buy their first-ever vehicle or a family upgrading from a motorcycle to a car will undoubtedly see the Alto K10 as an attractive offer, and I, for one, will agree with them on that. Indeed is a bargain that is actually quite a value for money.
Engine – 1.0-litre Dual Jet petrol
Power – 66bhp @5500rpm
Torque – 89Nm @3500rpm
Gearbox – 5-Speed Manual/5-Speed automatic
Fuel Economy – 24.39km/l (Manual)/24.90 km/l (AMT)