Suzuki’s Indian unit to stop selling diesel vehicles next year
By Atul Ranjan
NEW DELHI, NNA- India’s largest passenger vehicle maker, Maruti Suzuki India Ltd., a subsidiary of Suzuki Motor Corp., will phase out its diesel-powered models by April 1, 2020, to meet the country’s stricter emissions norms.
On the same date, India’s Bharat Stage VI, or BS VI, the most advanced emissions standard for automobiles equivalent to the European Union’s Euro-VI norms, come into effect. No new motor vehicles that only meet the less stringent emission standard BS-IV can be sold or registered from then.
Suzuki will discontinue the production of its existing BS IV-compliant diesel-run cars including the light commercial vehicle (LCV) model Super Carry.
“From April 1, we will have no diesel cars on sale,” Maruti Suzuki India Chairman R.C. Bhargava, said at a news conference on Thursday.
The cost of upgrading the diesel LCV to comply with the new emissions standard will be high, so the automaker has decided to discontinue it from next year, Bhargava said.
According to the company, diesels currently account for 23 percent of its overall sales volume in the country.
The automaker, which controls more than 50 percent of India’s passenger vehicles market, said it has already started the process of upgrading all its existing BS IV-compliant gasoline models to BS VI to meet the April 2020 deadline.
Under the BS VI regime, demand will shift toward gasoline-run vehicles as happened in the European market when the stricter emissions standard was introduced, according to Bhargava.
Photo caption: Maruti Suzuki India Chairman R.C. Bhargava speaks at a news conference in New Delhi on Thursday. (Photo: Maruti Suzuki)