Rumours were rife for more than a year that Maruti would launch a low-cost hatchback during the 2012 festive season. However, the car was just an upgrade to the existing Alto, called the Alto 800. Although the car looks similar to the Alto, there are evident changes, especially inside the cabin, that have given an identity that’s easily recognizable. Step inside and you are greeted by an all new dashboard. Silver inserts on the dashboard look good and plastic quality has been improved as well. There are quite a few storage spaces as well. The rear seat offers a marginal increase in legroom, courtesy of the scoops made on the back of the front seats. The 800 cc motor has undergone substantial changes too. Thanks to the new short skirt pistons, increased compression ratio and the longer air inlet system, torque is better by 11 percent. Riding on high profile narrow rubber, the Alto 800 is no driver’s car. The vague steering and average braking make the Alto 800 a car strictly for city usage. Despite all the drawbacks, the sticker price of Rs 2.44 lakh and a mileage of 22.74 kpl make this car a very practical one.