Suzuki is looking to make big strides when it comes to electrification. While some might say they are lagging behind, the company is actually looking to electrify two of its most popular models in just a few years. This means we could be looking at electrified versions of the Ertiga and the XL7 MPVs.
According to CNN Indonesia, the country's Minister of Industry, Agus Gumiwang Kartasasmita, recently showed a presentation wherein Suzuki has already drawn plans to make the mild-hybrid versions of the Ertiga and XL7 in the country. The electrification plan will be made possible via a IDR 1.2 trillion investment (or about PHP 4.1 billion).
But when will the two vehicles be actually revealed? The Ertiga Mild Hybrid is expected to be launched sometime in 2022. Meanwhile, the XL7 Mild Hybrid is set to debut in 2023. Both vehicles will be locally manufactured at the automaker's Cikarang plant in Indonesia.
The exact specifications of the two vehicles have yet to be revealed. However, this is not the first time Suzuki made a mild-hybrid version of the Ertiga. Back in 2017, Suzuki launched the Ertiga Diesel-Hybrid for the Indonesian market. It's powered by a 1.3-liter turbo-diesel engine that is helped along by an integrated starter generator (ISG). This allows the MPV to have regenerative braking, automatic engine start/stop, and faster acceleration when under load.
With this in mind, the Ertiga and XL7 Mild Hybrid vehicles could come with a similar (or upgraded) powertrain setup. But instead of having turbo-diesel under the hood, the new mild-hybrid MPVs will likely have a naturally-aspirated engine.
While Suzuki's plan to make and sell hybrids in Indonesia is big news, they're not alone. Other brands like Toyota, Honda, and Mitsubishi also have plans to produce and sell electrified vehicles in the country. Toyota will invest IDR 28 trillion (about PHP 94.3 billion) in order to produce 10 hybrid vehicles, as well as plans to manufacture the Lexus UX300e locally.
Honda and Mitsubishi, meanwhile, will invest IDR 5.2 trillion (about PHP 18 billion) and 11.2 trillion (about PHP 38.8 billion) respectively to build electrified models in the country.
Once Suzuki launches the hybrid versions of the Ertiga and XL7, could the PH market also get their hands on the two models? Perhaps, since the automaker sources both vehicles from Indonesia.
If given the choice, would you get a hybrid version of Suzuki's popular MPV? Or will you stick to tradition?