Take a peek at the streets, and you’d realize they are brimming with the Maruti Suzuki Ertiga, but I have always wondered why. I get that it is the cheapest alternative for anyone looking to buy a wholesome family MPV and the only MPV to offer a factory-fitted CNG kit, but how does it manage to sell so well? Luckily, I grabbed the keys for the all-new Maruti Suzuki Ertiga CNG that had come to us for a test and headed out to answer my questions.

Now before I begin, I must point out that this isn’t the same Ertiga as the current ongoing model; instead, Maruti has made a few subtle tweaks to the exterior, added a new ZXi trim option and, most importantly, added a new 1.5-litre DualJet petrol motor that offers more mileage than before. So let’s head out on the open roads and put the Ertiga CNG through its paces, shall we?

2022 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga CNG-Exterior Design of the Ertiga CNG

Ertiga (1)

Let me give you guys a few minutes to figure out the changes on the exterior of the 2022 Ertiga CNG. Couldn’t find it could you? Let me help; the most significant difference on the front is the new grille with the more striking chrome blades. Furthermore, two new paint shades are also available, Splendid Silver and Dignity Brown – and a new set of dual-tone alloy wheels. Finally, there’s a chrome band to the boot, but most of the important changes aren’t immediately visible.

2022 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga CNG-Interiors of the Ertiga CNG

Ertiga CNG (4)

Just like the exteriors, the changes in the interiors are also barely noticeable. It being the top-spec ZXi variant, things such as the new beige/light grey upholstery and darker wood trim are fitted. Features such as the keyless entry, the 7-inch touchscreen infotainment screen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. This system misses out on Maruti’s connected tech and a reverse camera, something quite a few owners wouldn’t appreciate, but rear parking sensors are offered.

Ertiga CNG (5)

Updates are made even to the driver’s display, where it now houses a coloured TFT display that showcases your CNG level and the CNG-to-fuel ratio, along with the other usual information. The CNG level can also be seen in one of the two fuel dials that are distinctly marked.

Ertiga CNG (3)

Just like before, the passengers of the Ertiga will appreciate the space offered on the inside, with the second row being adjustable for recline and can be moved forward or backwards. Moreover, third-row passengers wouldn’t feel too cramped on the inside even after adding the large CNG tank. The only downside is that the CNG tank occupies most of the trunk space available, so carrying anything larger than a small handbag would require you to fold the third row of seats.

2022 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga CNG-Driving and Performance

The Ertiga CNG is powered by a new 1.5-litre K15C dualjet petrol motor producing 100bhp in petrol mode, while in CNG mode, it drops down to 87bhp. However, the engine doesn’t feel sluggish and slow. Instead, it offers pretty abundant power when driving within the city. The Ertiga CNG always starts in petrol mode, and the switch to CNG feels seamless. One can only notice which mode they are driving in if they look at the central TFT display. The torque figures in the petrol mode are 136Nm, while in CNG mode, it goes down to 121.5Nm, and the Ertiga CNG can only be opted with a 5-speed manual gearbox.

Ertiga CNG (6)

The Ertiga is fitted with a 60 kg water equivalent CNG tank, the segment norm, which should accommodate 8 to 10 kgs of gas per tank up. Being factory fitted, it’s well-integrated too. Moreover, during my test, I managed to drive nearly 200 kilometres on one tank of CNG, and it cost me only Rs 706 to fill up 7.5 kilograms of CNG. Overall, the Ertiga CNG feels just the same as it did previously to drive, but the mid-level powerband of the engine has improved marginally, which many owners would appreciate while driving in the city. The gearshifts are smooth; moreover, due to the tall gear ratio, you don’t have to keep shuffling between gears. Bear in mind that the Ertiga CNG might start to feel slightly sluggish with all passengers and load, but that is a common occurrence in most MPVs.

2022 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga CNG-Verdict

Ertiga CNG (7)

Quite frankly, after spending the entire day with the Ertiga CNG, I now understand why Maruti has such great sales numbers for the Ertiga CNG. Glossing over the obvious fact that this is the only MPV in India sold with a factory-fitted CNG kit, overall, it proves to be the complete package any family would require. It has the space to keep the wife happy, the features to keep the kids happy, and most importantly, it now has the fuel economy and grunt to keep the husband happy. And as a family, when they are paying Rs 11.54 lakh (ex-showroom, India) for the ZXi variant, they realize that they don’t have to break the bank to achieve their dream of owning their own mobility. This makes it quite an enticing deal for any new MPV owner.

2022 Maruti Suzuki Ertiga CNG-Specifications for the Ertiga CNG

Engine: 1.5-litre K15C dualjet petrol
Power: 100bhp (Petrol), 87bhp (CNG)
Torque: 136Nm @4400rpm (Petrol), 121.5Nm @4200rpm (CNG)
Gearbox: 5-Speed Manual
CNG Tank Capacity: 60 L (Water Equivalent)

Price: Rs 11.54 lakh (ex-showroom, Maharashtra)

For- Mileage, Space
Against – Build Quality, Boot Space

To read the review of the Maruti Suzuki XL6, click here.