NEW DELHI: Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC) today launched in the Japanese market the premium hatchback Baleno which has been manufactured in India by its subsidiary Maruti Suzuki India.

It is for the first time that MSI made model is being exported to Japan where its parent SMC is based.

SMC has launched the all-new hatchback Baleno in Japan with 1.2 Dualjet naturally-aspirated engine, the Japanese firm said in a statement.

The 1.0 Boosterjet variant of the vehicle will be launched on May 13, it added.

Maruti Suzuki MD and CEO Kenichi Ayukawa said: “Launch of ‘Made in India’ Baleno in Japan is a proud moment for all of us. This reaffirms Maruti Suzuki’s manufacturing potential and growing importance of Maruti Suzuki India Limited in Suzuki Motor Corporation’s global business strategies.

“The Baleno is a model developed with Suzuki’s expertise in building compact cars in pursuit of the ideal compact hatchback. The model embodies a harmonious and high-level combination of the elements expected in a compact car including design, comfort, and driving and safety performances.”

On the launch, Sujan R Chinoy, Ambassador of India to Japan said: “The model being launched today, the Baleno is a state-of-the-art car developed and manufactured in India through Suzuki’s excellence. It will be exported to 100 global markets including Japan. I am confident that the Baleno will prove to be a huge success in Japan.”

The company has already sold 38,000 units of the model in India since its launch in October 2015.

Maruti Suzuki had last month shipped its first consignment of 1,800 units from Mundra Port in Gujarat, where SMC has set up a manufacturing plant to supply cars to its Indian arm.

Maruti also plans to export Baleno to over 100 global markets. The company and its supplier partners have invested Rs 1,060 crore in the development of Baleno, which is being manufactured at the company’s Manesar plant.

In the domestic market, the car has been well accepted and the company has over 80,000 bookings for the model.

It competes with the likes of Hyundai i20, Honda Jazz and Volkswagen Polo and is sold through the company’s new premium network of showrooms, Nexa.