The Indian car market has seen a significant shift towards diesel cars and petrol car sales have shrunk to previously unseen levels. The price difference between petrol and diesel is the major reason behind the major shift in customer preference. Carmakers were under prepared to respond to this huge change and have been left with a large pile of unsold petrol cars.
While many carmakers reduced production of petrol cars the demand kept on shrinking thus creating a growing stockpile of unsold petrol cars. Huge discounts and freebies did not help push sales and Maruti Suzuki is trying to reduce its burden by selling as many petrol cars in the overseas markets.
Africa has emerged as an ideal location to sell its petrol cars as demand for petrol cars in Africa continues to be high. Moreover, petrol and diesel prices are pretty much similar helping the market tilt favourably towards cheaper petrol cars.
Maruti Suzuki's petrol cars include the Alto, A-Star, Wagon R and Zen Estillo. With local demand coming down, Maruti Suzuki's only way out is to export petrol cars. The carmaker stands to benefit further by exports as the current low value of the Indian Rupee will mean it can get more money per car than in previous months.
Other Indian carmakers such as Hyundai Motors and Nissan who export a majority of their production could also boost petrol car exports considering the current market scenario.