MOTORING NEWS - A report by an Indian publication, Livemint, has revealed that Toyota and Suzuki have signed a joint deal on a couple of projects to benefit both Japanese car manufacturers.
Set to start towards the end of May next year, the tie-up is about Suzuki developing a new engine with technical assistance from Toyota and Denso. It also stipulates Toyota will be able to sell cars engineered and manufactured by Suzuki.
The two companies are reported to have reached an agreement regarding the first cross-badged car. The Baleno will get a Toyota badge in India where 20 000 to 25 000 cars will be supplied by Suzuki from its factory in Gujarat.
Aside from switching logos, the five-door hatchback will go through some subtle design changes, such as sligthly revised headlights and taillights along with an updated front grille.
It is not clear whether this affects our market. Suzuki and Toyota have declined to comment.
Speculation suggests the Baleno won't be the only car to be sold under two different brands, as Suzuki will also allow Toyota to sell the Vitara small crossover, while the Corolla sedan may carry the Suzuki logo in India. The partnership between the two companies will not be limited to the Indian market.
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