Indian Car Makers headed towards diesel free future

March 08, 2019 11:02 AM

The stage is set as the future holds something else for the automotive industry. Maruti and Mahindra are making out plans to go completely diesel free in the future. Our planet will soon be on the verge of devastating climate change and this has led to stringent emission norms across the globe. Also, a complete dependency on fossil fuel puts us in a tough place. India has one of the highest carbon emissions in the world.

Being the largest car manufacturer in the country, Maruti has decided on to reiterate its strategic approach. They are in talks with the parent company Suzuki and making minds whether they should completely cease their diesel engine manufacturing. Also, the company has plans to promote alternative fuel like CNG. Homegrown manufacturers like Mahindra and Mahindra are gradually shifting towards electric power. Manufacturers like Volvo have ditched diesel engines in the international market. Volvo’s product lineup in the US consists of petrol and electric powered vehicles only.

Pawan Goenka, the Managing Director of Mahindra said, “What happens post-BS-VI is a question that everybody asks. I have said that for small SUVs, and small cars, probably there will be a significant switch towards petrol, but for large SUVs, I think it will be diesel. Where the line is drawn between mid and large, we do not know. A 1.2-liter engine will certainly become more petrol. A 2-liter engine will certainly be diesel. The 1.5-1.6 liter is on the edge and where it goes we don’t know,".

Goenka also said that 20-30% of the sales are generated by the diesel variants. Although, if you have a better engine in the lineup then you don't need to worry all along. There are also other factors like investors are currently lining for manufacturers who are willing to take action in accordance with environmental risk.

This shift is happening due to two major reasons. Initially, the gap between the price of petrol and diesel was substantial but later it was left to a difference of 7.1%. As we all know that the diesel variants are considerably expensive in comparison to their petrol counterparts. Therefore, this led to people prefer petrol cars over diesel ones. And with the introduction of BS-VI emission norms, a lot of car makers are going to ditch diesel engines.

There are also talks that Maruti Suzuki is thinking of completely removing diesel-powered vehicles from its lineup. The company is investing heavily in CNG technology across its products lineup. Also, Maruti is looking at a proposal to run CNG stations at its authorized workshops. The company has 7 CNG powered vehicles in its portfolio.

Sources have confirmed that Fiat India will no longer be able to manufacture a 1.3 diesel engine unit for Maruti. The decision is taken because of the BS-VI norms that are about to be implied.  Fiat’s diesel engine doesn’t meet the emission norms and for Fiat has no plans to upgrade its diesel engine to meet the norms. With the current scenario, Maruti will produce its own 1.5-liter diesel engine this year.


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