NEW DELHI: The country’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) sees no logic in developing a BS6 diesel engine for small cars.
Earlier in 2019, Maruti Suzuki phased out the diesel engine and started to upgrade its portfolio with a BS6-complaint, K-Series engine. The auto major, with no diesel vehicles in its line-up, now aims to expand its CNG product range to bring in additional volumes.
Last, of the lot, S-Cross in BS6 avatar will be launched on July 29. In an exclusive interview to TOI, executive director sales and marketing Shashank Srivastava explained why small-displacement Diesel engines are not feasible. Here are four reasons:
1. There is absolutely no logic in developing a small diesel engine. It is less than 5% in the hatchback segment and has reduced considerably in sedans and entry-level SUV segment as now economics does not support it.
2. Reduction in the price gap between petrol and diesel fuels, increase in the cost of diesel cars with the coming of BS6 emission norms were some of the major factors responsible for the decline in diesel car sales. The cost differential between petrol and diesel cars which used to be in the range of Rs 70,000-90,000 earlier has now gone up to Rs 1.5 lakh to Rs 2 lakh.
3. The economics of running a vehicle on diesel, which was so favourable earlier, has now disappeared. Therefore there is no economic logic for buying a diesel car and that is reflected in the percentage share of diesel cars in the market. From 60 per cent a few years back it has come down to 20 per cent.
4. In small cars, the share of diesel cars is now less than 5 per cent. The only segment where the percentage of diesel cars is above 50 per cent is the upper SUV segment where buyers are not bothered by the economic viability.