When I was a kid, there were just three Indian vehicles I considered bad-ass, one being the Mahindra Jeep, the second was the Tata Safari and the third, was the Maruti Suzuki Gypsy. My dad owned a Safari and my dad’s best friend owned a gypsy and I never wasted an opportunity to ditch my dad’s car and jump in the gypsy whenever I could.
The gypsy has come to be known for being that proper SUV with very basic amenities in a considerably cheap price range. That worked really well in the 90’s, but definitely isn’t something that would now. The gypsy is a car that will not age well and that’s the hard truth. I used to be in love with the car but I soon came to realize how impractical it is in today’s day and age. And knowing the type of people who owned it didn’t make it any easier to like the car. The car is mostly used by government officials like the army or park officers who use it on safaris, but that is not who I am talking about. I am talking about that huge chunk of annoying Indians, for whom this car came as a blessing. The ones who could now finally buy a cheap SUV and modify it with monster truck tires and a sound system that only spits bass and Punjabi raps.
The vehicle was launched back in 1985 and has almost remained unchanged. That being said, the car did allow owners to customize it in various ways but at their own expense. The company’s biggest change to the vehicle was under the hood, when they had to change to the 1.3 liter MPFI BS4 engine in order to meet the emission standards. The primary reason to stop taking bookings, is that they will not be able to keep the Gypsy up to date with the rules that will be introduced in April 2019, that make ABS and airbags mandatory.
Bookings will stop next month and by March 2019, the SUV will be completely phased out.
But there seems to be a silver lining. This departure comes at a good time for Maruti Suzuki due to the expected release of the Jimny sometime within the next 1-2 years. The Jimmy is considered to be the company’s answer to people’s demand to put out a car that has the same essence of the Gypsy, but with today’s technology infused within it.
Header Credit – Akhil Gangadharan (Instagram)