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Indian market will soon bid adieu to a dozen small diesel vehicles


India, March 2, 2019 :  With effect from  April 2020 and the Indian market will bid adieu to close to a dozen compact cars, SUVs and sedans that run on diesel. This happens at a time when diesel vehicles are already losing enthusiasm due to the narrowing price gap between petrol and diesel fuels, the rising pollution problem and the anti-diesel blow from the regulators and courts.

According to people within the know, Fiat’s 1.3-litre multi-jet diesel engine, which powers Maruti Suzuki’s fastselling models SwiftDzireBaleno and Vitara Brezza, will see the end of production by December this year.

The similar engine also powers Tata Motors’ Bolt and Zest. Mahindra & Mahindra’s 1.2-litre diesel that powers the KUV, Volkswagen’s 1.5-litre plant on the Polo, Vento and Rapid and Toyota’s 1.5-litre engine are all set to see the end of life by April 2020. In other words, these will not be upgraded to satisfy the Bharat Stage-VI emission rules that will come into force on April 1, 2020.

Already, the share of diesel cars has slipped to a decade low of about 20% of passenger vehicles in the nine months through December 2018. As the nation moves towards the cleaner BS-VI engines, the automakers are going to axe numerous compact diesel cars from their portfolios.

Small diesel engines can be upgraded to satisfy BS-VI rules, but that will make them unviable on small cars, say manufacturers. The cost of converting a small diesel engine to BS-VI will range from Rs 1.3 lakh to Rs 1.5 lakh per unit, said RC Bhargava, chairman of Maruti Suzuki (as compared, this cost for a petrol engine would be Rs 25,000-30,000). Already, the diesel engine is costly by Rs 1-1.2 lakh. So, with BS-VI changes, the vehicle will cost around Rs 2-2.5 lakh more than the petrol variant.

Small diesel engines will get concealed, mentioned Pawan Goenka, Managing Director of Mahindra & Mahindra. The mid-size engines will likely be extra gasoline primarily based, however diesel will proceed, and the massive ones won’t be affected, he added.

 

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