Last night, Suzuki launched the all-new Ertiga for the Philippine market. As it aims to build on the success on the outgoing model, we had a few questions for Suzuki and how they aim to build on the momentum from last year. After all, Suzuki managed to defy the market's downward trend by actually posting higher sales than 2017 in 2018.
Speaking to Keiichi Suzuki, Suzuki Philippines general manager for automobiles, he said that a lot of time and development was put in the second-generation Ertiga. In fact, he added that as soon as the first-generation model was launched five years ago, they began work on the all-new model we see now. That being said, their work isn't finished even with the launch of the 2019 Ertiga. There is more to come.
The Suzuki Ertiga is up against the likes of the Honda Mobilio and Toyota Avanza, but they don't have a model that will go head to head with the Honda BR-V, Mitsubishi Xpander, or Toyota Rush. However, that could change soon. Suzuki said that the prospect of a higher-riding version of the Ertiga is being studied. He didn't mention specifics but the outlook appears to be good. Also, he didn't mention a timeline so it could still be a long time before it reaches production, if it's green-lit, that is.
On that note, it appears that Suzuki is pretty far in the high-riding Ertiga's study. Earlier this year, a patent photo leaked out and showed the rear of a more rugged-looking Ertiga. It has cladding on its rear bumper, and it also came with a pair of roof rails. India could be the first market to get it, provided Suzuki pushes through with development.
As for the rest of Suzuki's range, Keiichi Suzuki said that there will be more HearTect platform vehicles coming soon from the brand. HearTect is Suzuki's newest modular platform which currently underpins the Swift, Dzire, and the recently-launched Ertiga. Does this mean the Vitara and Ciaz will be next? It's still far out into the future, but it is a possibility nonetheless.