In an exclusive report, we can reveal that Maruti Suzuki has commenced the production of the Toyota Belta at its manufacturing facility in Manesar as it is spied in red colour. The Belta is part of the rebadged exercise under the partnership with Suzuki and is the third model to be spawned out of this strategy following the Glanza (badge engineered Baleno) and the Urban Cruiser (rebadged Vitara Brezza).
The badge engineering exercise has certainly helped in Toyota expanding its domestic portfolio following the implementation of the stringent BSVI emission standards as a host of vehicles were discontinued. The Belta is the rebadged version of the Maruti Suzuki Ciaz midsize sedan and since the production has begun, we can expect the launch to happen in the coming weeks.
The Toyota Belta is expected to be priced competitively against a range of C-segment sedans such as Honda City, Hyundai Verna, Skoda Rapid, and Volkswagen Vento. It will be interesting to see the future of the Yaris sedan as it currently sits in the same space. Just as other badge-engineered cars, the Belta will have exterior changes to differentiate itself from the Ciaz.
It gets visual updates in form of a different grille with the inclusion of a Toyota badge and is likely to get a set of newly designed alloy wheels in the Toyota Belta. The Maruti Suzuki Ciaz is offered in Sigma, Delta, Zeta, Alpha and S variants and the Belta could be retailed in multiple trims as well.
The existing Ciaz is based on the lightweight Heartect platform and expect no changes to the underpinnings in the upcoming Belta. On the inside, only minor changes can be expected and the features list will almost replicate that of the Ciaz as a SmartPlay touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility, a semi-digital instrument cluster, steering wheel with mounted controls, dual front airbags, ABS with EBD, etc will likely be available.
As for the performance, the same 1.5-litre four-cylinder K15B petrol engine producing 104.7 PS maximum power at 6,000 rpm and 138 Nm of peak torque delivered at 4,400 rpm will be present. The powertrain is linked with a five-speed manual transmission or a four-speed torque converter automatic unit in the Ciaz and expect a similar engine/gearbox combo in the Belta with identical fuel efficiency figures.