Jaco Van Der Merwe

By Jaco Van Der Merwe

Head of Motoring

Impressive new Suzuki Baleno heading for South Africa

Updated version of the hatchback which shares a platform with Toyota Starlet features substantial specification upgrades.

A mere two days after its global launch in India, it has been confirmed that the new Suzuki Baleno is heading for South Africa.

“The importance of the South African market to Suzuki is evidenced by the fact that we can confirm the product line-up and specifications of the all-new Baleno a mere two days after the global reveal,” says Brendon Carpenter, Brand Marketing Manager of Suzuki Auto South Africa.

The new model features plenty of upgrades from the outgoing Suzuki Baleno, which shares a platform with the Toyota Starlet. These include a bigger and stronger engine, styling enhancements and higher levels of specification.

Under the bonnet, the 1.4-litre engine makes way for the K15B 1.5-litre mill that also serves on the Vitara Brezza, Jimny, Ciaz and Ertiga. The four-pot powerplant sends 77kW/138Nm, up 9kW/8Nm from the outgoing Suzuki Baleno, to the front wheels via either five-speed manual or four-speed automatic transmission.

It also benefits from improved suspension, steering and drivetrain.

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The new Suzuki Baleno incorporates a design language the Japanese carmaker refers to as Crafted Futurism. Exterior styling changes include a wider front air intake, new three-dimensional grille and the flow of body lines. On the inside, changes include a multi-layered dashboard, contoured sears and the use of higher-grade materials.

The rear of the new Suzuki Baleno.

Various specification upgrades have been made to both trim levels, the entry-level GL and flagship GLX. With the addition of an auto box on the GL, the new range will consist of four models, GL manual and automatic and GLX manual and automatic.

The two trim levels will include the following specifications:


  • Cruise control and climate control with rear-mounted air vents
  • 7-inch touch screen infotainment system with two USB type A and one Type C charging port
  • Hill Hold Control
  • Carried over from the outgoing Suzuki Baleno in GL spec are Electronic Stability Programme, dual front airbags with ABS, EBD, BAS, leather clad steering wheel with controls for the audio, phone and cruise control systems and electric windows and mirrors


  • 9-inch high-definition infotainment system featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and a new interface with a high degree of customisation
  • 360-degree view camera system
  • Full colour Head-Up display featuring speed, temperature and other vehicle warning symbols
  • Carried over from the outgoing Suzuki Baleno in GLX spec are: six airbags, LED daytime running lights, LED projector headlights, keyless entry and a push-button start as well as two-tone 16-inch alloy wheels
The interior of the new Suzuki Baleno.

Suzuki has added five new exterior colours to the range. These are Celestial Blue Pearl Metallic, Luxe Beige Pearl Metallic, Opulent Red Pearl Metallic, Splendid Silver Pearl Metallic and Grandeur Grey Metallic.

More details on the local range, pricing, service plan and warranty information will be made available at the time of launch.

For more information on the Suzuki Baleno, click here.

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