Nissan Moco (Suzuki MR Wagon)

Zaheer August 1, 2011 0

A 4-seat kei car with a mini MPV body, Suzuki MR Wagon has been in production since 2001 by Suzuki. It was designed solely for the Japanese market. The vehicle was also sold by Nissan under the OEM agreement in Japan as Nissan Moco. The first generation model was launched in 2001 and since then it has been in its second generation. Maruti Suzuki in India introduced it as Maruti Zen Estilo in 2006. However, in 2009, the prefix Zen was dropped and the car became simple Maruti Estilo.

The name of the vehicle is by no means fit to the vehicle itself because the MR or RMR is an abbreviation for the rear mid-engine, rear-wheel drive layout, but the vehicle doesn’t possess this feature.

First Generation (2001-2006)

The first generation MR Wagon was launched on December 4, 2001. It was powered by a Suzuki’s K6A kei car engine featuring either a naturally aspirated (40 kW; 54 hp) or turbocharged (44 kW; 60 hp) variants. Both front-wheel drive and all-wheel drive were offered. A 4-speed manual transmission with column shift was standard in all the versions. In 2005, a hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicle was released which was built on the first generation MR Wagon. The technology used was developed by both Suzuki and General Motors.

In 2001, the concept version of Nissan Moco was revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show and was officially offered for sale on April 10, 2002. The Moco shared its engine, drivetrain, and transmission choices with the MR Wagon. The only difference between the Nissan Moco and Suzuki MR Wagon was the presence of Nissan’s ‘wing’ grille pretty much like the one seen on the Nissan Primera P12. Nissan Moco was able to achieve the 3000 to 4000 sales per month which were more than the Suzuki MR Wagon sales.

In India, the first generation model debuted in December 2006 where it was marketed as Maruti Zen Estilo. It was equipped with a larger F10D 1.1-L MPFI engine also found in the Japanese market Wagon R. In August 2009, the facelift version was released and the Zen part of the name was dropped leaving only the Maruti Estilo. Despite the fact that the facelifted Estilo was offered with a number of different modifications and enhancements over its Japanese counterpart, the sales began to decline following this transformation.

The first generation model is still offered in Indonesian market under the Suzuki Karmun Estilo name where it was introduced for the first time in January 2008.

Second Generation (2006-present)

In 2005, the second generation model was revealed for the first time at the Tokyo Motor Show as a concept version under Mom’s Personal Wagon name following its credibility and usability for mothers driving their children such as food trays, a front bench seat and pillarless suicide doors on the left side. Despite having all these features, it won’t be able to operate like actual MR Wagon. The second generation model made available to customers on January 20, while the Moco went on sale on February 1, 2006. The car also offers a new keyless entry and start system. Both Nissan and Suzuki versions shares the engine, drive and shifter choice. The gear shifter is moved to the instrument panel in contrast to previous generation. Except for front end designs, both the versions are almost similar in their exterior looks.

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