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Diesel stays on Maruti radar

India’s No. 1 car maker has already announced that it will stop its diesel programme for smaller engines

By Anasuya Basu in Calcutta

  • Published 14.10.19, 12:08 AM
  • Updated 14.10.19, 12:08 AM
The company introduced its first BS-VI compliant vehicle in April 2019. It has managed to sell 2 lakh BS-VI vehicles in the six months since its introduction. Maruti now has eight models with BS-VI engines.
The company introduced its first BS-VI compliant vehicle in April 2019. It has managed to sell 2 lakh BS-VI vehicles in the six months since its introduction. Maruti now has eight models with BS-VI engines. (iStock)

Maruti Suzuki India Limited is not ruling out the production of BS-VI diesel engines with higher capacity. The company said it needed to study consumer reaction in the higher engine capacity category, based on which it will take a decision.

India’s No. 1 car maker has already announced that it will stop its diesel programme for smaller engines.

In an email interaction with The Telegraph, C. V. Raman, senior executive director (engineering, quality and supply chain) and member of the executive board, said: “Converting a smaller BS-IV diesel engine to BS-VI will substantially increase the cost difference. Our estimate is that the current price difference of around Rs 1 lakh between a BS-IV diesel and petrol car will go up to Rs 1.75-2 lakh if we upgrade to BS-VI diesel. At the cost difference, customers may prefer a BS-VI petrol variant to a BS-IV diesel vehicle, especially in the small car category.

“However, we need to study the consumer reaction in the higher engine specification. Based on customer reaction and preference we will decide whether to bring in a larger diesel engine vehicle,” Raman said.

The company introduced its first BS-VI compliant vehicle in April 2019. It has managed to sell 2 lakh BS-VI vehicles in the six months since its introduction. Maruti now has eight models with BS-VI engines, including the Alto 800, the Baleno, WagonR (1.2 L), Swift, Dzire, Ertiga and the recently launched XL6 and S-Presso.

Reiterating that BS-VI compliant vehicles will not have operational issues running on BS-IV fuel, Raman explained: “The main difference between BS-IV and BS-VI fuel is the sulphur content. BS-VI petrol cars from Maruti Suzuki have been tested with BS-IV fuel and there is no operational concern. Also, BS-IV vehicles can continue to run on the BS-VI fuel.”

“However, it is different in the case of diesel vehicles. A BS-VI diesel vehicle cannot run on BS-IV fuel as the system is highly sensitive to higher sulphur in BS-IV fuel. This may cause faster deterioration and poisoning of catalyst,” Raman added. 

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