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Wednesday / 28 February 2024
HomeFeaturesSuzuki Fronx vs Baleno – Which is selling more in South Africa

Suzuki Fronx vs Baleno – Which is selling more in South Africa

The Suzuki Fronx has been a big hit in South Africa since its launch approximately six months ago, with sales that are on par with many of the brand’s other popular options.

The Fronx is the Japanese company’s latest crossovers, entering the country in August last year in the wake of the Vitara Brezza’s cancellation.

It is one of the only crossovers in South Africa that can still be bought for less than R300,000, which is possible due to the fact that it is based on one of the carmaker’s existing models – the Baleno hatchback.

Hatchback or crossover?

Crossovers and SUVs have seen a huge surge in popularity in recent years at the expense of hatchbacks and sedans, and the Fronx is one of the latest examples of a brand attempting to capitalize on this shift in tastes – with great success.

The following table shows a monthly sales breakdown of the Fronx’s sales compared to its Baleno sibling since the former launched in South Africa in August last year:

Month Suzuki Baleno sales Suzuki Fronx sales
August 2023 407 units 302 units
September 2023 409 units 527 units
October 2023 490 units 415 units
November 2023 414 units 547 units
December 2023 399 units 257 units
January 2024 625 units 391 units
Total: 2,744 units 2,439 units

The Baleno has sold more, but the margin is surprisingly close, bearing in mind that the hatchback starts at R247,900 while the crossover retails from R288,900.

That R41,000 price difference is much more pronounced at this end of the market than it would be for other segments, and yet many people are evidently willing to stretch their wallets to pick up the SUV despite the two cars’ similarities.

For context, the Fronx and Baleno use the same 1.5-litre petrol engine with a choice of a five-speed manual or four-speed automatic gearbox, and even have the same GL and GLX trim levels with near-identical equipment lists.

The Fronx’s main advantage comes down to its improved ground clearance of 170mm instead of 150mm, as the pair are otherwise very similar. The crossover’s dimensions are not much bigger than the Baleno, and it actually has a smaller boot of 304 litres vs 314 litres before the rear seats are folded.

Nonetheless, consumers have shown that they are interested in SUVs and are willing to pay a premium to get their hands on one if they can.

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