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According to LiveMint, Japanese auto giant Honda will continue to retail cars featuring diesel engines even after BS-VI emission norms are enforced. They are the second manufacturer, after Ford Motors, to make this statement. Honda plans to make available models with upgraded BS-VI engines in both petrol and diesel starting the fourth quarter of this financial year.
According to a senior official of Honda Cars India Ltd (HCIL), the company plans to upgrade both its diesel engines. These engines power various models in Honda's portfolio like the Amaze, Honda City, the WR-V, the BR-V, the Civic and the CR-V.
Rajesh Goel, Senior Vice President & Director, Marketing & Sales, Honda Cars India Limited, said, "From our experience, for the fuel choice among petrol or diesel, 80 per cent of customers make a rational choice based on consideration of driving distance and recovery period. However, there are still 20 per cent customers who make an emotional choice towards a particular fuel. The company will take care of these 20 per cent emotional choice buyers as well."
Mr Goel said that fuel dynamics will change after BS-VI norms are enforced, and that price gaps will increase between petrol and diesel models. He said, "But we believe the demand for diesel will not vanish immediately. Therefore, we will continue to offer the diesel models in line with market demand and gradually move towards future alternatives."
Mr Goel is confident that the move from BS-IV to BS-VI will be smooth and he says Honda's progress towards implementation of BS-VI compliant engines is on schedule. "Smooth run-out of BS-IV vehicles and switch over to BS-VI vehicles will be a key task during this financial year. HCIL will progressively introduce BS-VI compliant models from fourth quarter of this fiscal." he said.
Honda currently sells Amaze, WR-V, City and BR-V with a 1.5 litre diesel engine, while Civic and CR-V are powered by a 1.6 litre diesel powertrain. All the cars are available with petrol engine as well.
With diesel cars set to become costlier after the BS-VI implementation, industry leader Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) has said that it would discontinue all diesel models starting 1 April 2020. Tata Motors is also in the process of phasing out small capacity diesel engines from it's portfolio.
Thoughts About Honda Continuing To Retail Diesel Cars After BS-VI Norm Kick In
Kudos to Honda Cars India Limited. Now the second manufacturer who is on board. Honda understands that Indians love diesel vehicles, want diesel vehicles (even if they do not buy them). Good to see Honda putting in the effort. We find it a little strange that not one India based auto manufacturer wants to put in the effort of upgrading their entire fleet to meet BS-VI compliance. Tsk! Tsk!