Automobile manufacturers in India are working overtime in order to upgrade their vehicular portfolio to meet the new BS-VI emission regulations.
While some of them are developing al-together new powertrains, some of focussed on improving their existing engine line-up.
Whatever the road the automobile manufacturer take, the costs involved in jumping from one emission standard to the other by skipping a step in-between are huge.
And in one way or the other, the input costs involved with make their way to the end consumer.
CV Raman, senior executive director (engineering), Maruti Suzuki, told to Autocar India that the costs involved in the upgradation of diesel engines are likely to make such car quite expensive.
“It’s not that we aren’t confident of upgrading a small diesel engine to meet BS-VI norms. We can fully meet all the future requirements. But there are costs involved. Whether the customer would be willing to pay Rs 2 or 3 lakh more for a selective catalytic reduction (SCR)-equipped diesel in the MPV segment is a question mark,” said CV Raman to Autocar India.
In the past, regulations set by the Government in relating to diesel driven vehicles have been very erratic. As a result of this, there has been a rising uncertainly towards oil-burners in India.
As a result of this, the sales of diesel vehicles in India, in the private vehicle segment has gone down in 2018 in comparison to last year.
40 per cent of the total PV sales in April-Oct 2017 accounted for diesel vehicles. This year, the number has come down to 38 per cent.
Not only this but due to the recent reduction in the gap between the prices of petrol and diesel cars has also led to buyers inclining more towards gasoline-driven vehicles.
With diesel vehicles set to get expensive due to the BS-VI regulations, Maruti Suzuki believes that there will be an increase in the demand for petrol as well as CNG driven vehicles.
Maruti Suzuki currently has a very strong portfolio of CNG vehicles in India. The recently introduced second-generation iteration of the Ertiga MPV will too get a factory fitted CNG variant within the next 6 months.
Currently, the Ertiga is available with a new 1.5-litre petrol engine and the older generations 1.3-litre DDiS unit. Both the engines are available with Suzuki’s mild-hybrid technology.
Source: Autocar India
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