The History of Maruti Alto

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History of Maruti Alto

1st Generation Alto

Maruti Alto is an all-time favourite hatchback in India. The journey of Alto starts in India by 27th September 2000 and from the date, Alto has gone through many iterations and still a successfully running model on the Indian roads. The first generation of Maruti Alto is the Indian built version of the 5th generation Alto by Maruti Suzuki.

The history of Alto starts with the Japanese carmaker Suzuki in 1979. Suzuki built Alto under Kei (Japanese vehicle category for small highway passenger automobiles) The Alto now available in the market is the eighth generation of Alto. From the beginning, the USP(Unique Selling Point) of Alto is low price and high fuel economy.

Before going into the details of the Alto and its history, let us have a bird's view on the creator of Alto The Suzuki.

  • 1909 - Michio Suzuki founded the company Suzuki Loom Works in Hamamatsu, Japan
  • 1929 - an Invented new type of weaving the machine and started exporting
  • 1937 - As a part of business diversification, Suzuki decided to invest in the automobile industry and within 2 years first car prototype was born.
  • 1941 - The first car generated power of 13 bhp with a displacement of less than 800 cc. It was a liquid-cooled, four-stroke, four-cylinder engine car.
  • 1951 - By the time of the second world war and the years after Suzuki faced a major turn down in business.
  • 1955 - Suzuki Suzulight is the first successful automobile from the house of Suzuki with a front-wheel drive and four-wheel independent suspension.
  • 1958 - The Suzuki adopted its famous ‘S’ mark as corporate emblem

Suzuki continued their success saga to date and still counting. The Suzuki manufactures automobiles, four-wheel-drive vehicles, ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles, motorcycles, marine engines, and different small internal combustion engines. Suzuki had branched out to the medical field also.

Now, we can have to drive through the generations of Suzuki Alto

1st generation - 1979


1st Generation Alto

The first generation was introduced in May 1979 and was a 3 door cargo version of the Fronte( Sedan model of Suzulight van, introduced in 1962) model with a folding rear seat. Alto was powered with a T5B two-stroke 539 cc engine with 3 cylinders and produced a power output of 21 kW at 5500 rpm. Alto was a sensation and a market success with its low price.

2nd generation - 1984


2nd generation alto

The second generation of Alto was introduced in September 1984. The design was from the famous GM M- platform and has a power output of 47 kW. The 2nd gen Alto was the first five-door commercial in japan of its kind and was available with foldable rear seats.

3rd generation - 1988


3rd generation Alto

The third generation of Alto hit the roads in September 1988. This was the last model of Alto associated with the Fronte model. The main attraction of the model was its sliding door on the driver side.

4th generation - 1994


4th generation Alto

The fourth generation of Alto was introduced in November 1994. By the introduction of Wagon R, Alto had lost a major market share. So when came up with the 4th generation, the design concept was to stick with simplicity as of a basic car. They were not exported and instead the time Indian built Maruti Zen was exported to foreign market under Alto Badge.

5th generation - 1998


5th Generation Alto

The fifth generation of Alto came to light in 1998. This generation of Alto is the forefather of Indian built Maruti Alto. The design was more rounded.

6th generation - 2004


6th Generation Alto

The sixth generation of Alto was introduced in 2004. There was a visible design change along with upgrades. The bonnet and headlamps were curved down at the front and were given the looks of a cute little car.

7th generation - 2009


7th Generation Alto

The seventh-generation was first introduced in the Tokyo Motor Show 2009. It was equipped with a 660cc engine with a 5-speed manual and 4-speed automatic transmission option.

8th generation - 2014


The eighth generation of Alto introduced in Japan in 2014 with a handful of enhancements. The design was of retro and with a reduced weight of around 60 kg compared to the previous generation. Suzuki had introduced a new technology named “Suzuki green technology” for the body and engine to achieve better fuel efficiency. The 8th generation Alto claims a mileage of 37 kmpl.

From the 5th generation Alto, the Indian built Maruti Alto was born. Let us have a look at the Maruti Alto and its upgrades and facelifts happened.

1st generation - Maruti Alto - 2000


The 1st generation of Maruti Alto was introduced on 27th September 2000. This model was inspired by the 5th generation of Suzuki Alto

2nd generation - Maruti Alto - 2012


The second generation of Maruti Alto was introduced on 16th October 2012. The 2nd generation came up with a new name as Alto 800. This was a total revamped model both internally and externally. Alto 800 completely replaced the first generation Alto out of the market. The new Maruti Alto 800 comes with an improved fuel efficiency of 24.7 kmpl.

The K-series - 2015


Alto K 10

In 2015 Alto k10 is introduced in the Indian market with a 1.0-liter K10B engine with better performance and fuel economy. The Alto K10 facelift is available with a 5-speed manual and automatic transmission types.

As the BS6 norms are rolling out by 2020, hope Maruti will come up with the popular model with required changes.

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