Maruti’s New Infotainment System Debuts In 2022: What To Expect
Modified On Dec 01, 2021 10:41 AM By Sonny
It could be offered on as many as six new Marutis due to launch in 2022
Maruti has a flurry of new products coming up next year, eight to be precise. Some of these have already been spied during testing, revealing design-related details. One such element spied was of particular interest -- a new touchscreen infotainment system.
The current crop of Maruti cars -- from the Alto to the S-Cross -- offers the same Smartplay Studio infotainment system with the 7-inch touchscreen display. While it is usual for carmakers to be consistent with their tech across portfolios, this level of commonality across price points makes the higher-end Maruti’s seem dated.
But the carmaker seems to have recognised this shortcoming, which brings us back to the new system we’ve spied on some of the upcoming models like the facelifted Baleno or the new Vitara Brezza. It may even be limited to models competing at a premium price point, including Arena and Nexa cars. We’ve also seen a version of this new infotainment system on the all-new Suzuki S-Cross for European markets.
Here’s everything we know to expect from Maruti’s new infotainment system:
A larger display
The most visible change is that the new system will feature a larger touchscreen display. While the 7-inch unit is acceptable on budget-centric compacts, other segments have moved up a size, and Maruti needs to catch up. For example, its largest rival, Hyundai, now offers an 8-inch touchscreen unit from the Grand i10 Nios to the Verna, while the i20 and Creta get 10.25-inch displays. Even the new Renault Kiger and Nissan Magnite feature an 8-inch unit. Based on the units spied, it’d be fair to assume that Maruti’s new infotainment is larger too and could be a 9-inch display as debuted on the new S-Cross.
Advanced connected car technology with remote functions
Connected car tech was only recently introduced to the mass market segments but has already become a staple for any premium model’s top variant. Maruti’s current tech suite, Suzuki Connect, offers telematics services such as vehicle tracking, security and safety alerts, vehicular information, and driving analytics. This information can be tracked via the corresponding smartphone app. The Smartplay system also offers additional services such as navigation, music, news, sports, and finding points of interest (PoI) by installing partnered apps.
The new system should add remote functionalities to the list of connected car tech features. It would include operating the climate controls, engine start/stop, door lock/unlock, and the horn and lights via the smartphone app. This infotainment system will likely be capable of over-the-air updates for navigation and other built-in applications.
Maruti’s new infotainment system should expand some of the vehicular functions to be voice-enabled as well. This could include setting the climate controls, opening a sunroof, asking about news, setting a destination for navigation, and controlling the media playback. These are features offered by rivals in the same segments that Maruti competes in. For example, Hyundai’s connected car tech can be activated via the “Hello Blue Link” voice prompt, while Honda has integrated Amazon Alexa into the City’s connected car tech suite.
The new infotainment system should support wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay like the one in the new Euro-spec S-Cross, making it easier to use. It has become common in most recent models, often as standard with the infotainment system. The current Smartplay Studio still requires you to connect your smartphone via USB cable to use those features. Not only would it help declutter the central console area, but it can also create an inclusive experience for all passengers in the car. Maruti may even offer a wireless charging pad, another feature already provided by most of its rivals.
New look, familiar UI
The dashboards spied for the upcoming Baleno and Vitara Brezza with the new infotainment seem pretty similar. While the current Smartplay system is usually housed inside the dashboard, the new system’s display has a freestanding design that sits atop the central AC vents. This change in the positioning and shape of the new infotainment system already gives it a fresh look over the current system. At the same time, Maruti is likely to use a similar design theme for the UI of the new system as the current Smartplay Studio to maintain a sense of brand familiarity for the buyers.
More details regarding Maruti’s new infotainment system are sure to surface as we get closer to the launch of its new models. While we know there are eight car launches slated for 2022, we do not know what sequence they will be arriving in. This new system will likely debut on the facelifted Baleno or the new Vitara Brezza in India before being rolled out on other premium offerings like the Ciaz, S-Cross, and the upcoming Hyundai Creta rival.
1 out of 1 found this helpful