As the deadline for the implementation of BSVI emission norms is looming large, India’s top car manufacturer Maruti is all set to come up with the BSVI-compliant version of its top-selling car Alto. Maruti Suzuki is preparing to deal with one of the biggest challenges that it will soon be facing in its 37-year dominant run in passenger car market in India.
Maruti Suzuki Alto has created a new milestone by selling 35 lakh cars in 2017-18 breaking its own record both in wholesale and retail. Now, the company is also working on building a future-oriented variant of its top-selling Alto car by enabling it with BSVI compatibility.
The Indo-Japanese car manufacturer has already started working on turning its workhorse, the 800 & K10 of Maruti Suzuki Alto, into BSVI-compliant machines. Maruti Alto is currently available in two versions - Alto 800 & Alto K10 and the said variant is expected to hit the market before 2020. RS Kalsi, the senior executive director of Maruti Suzuki, said, “The BSVI version of the Alto would be ready well before the (April) 2020 deadline.”
The Maruti Alto is currently available in both petrol and diesel variants. The 796cc and the 998cc variants of petrol engines of the Alto siblings will be modified to work efficiently on cleaner BSVI fuel in order to emit lower CO2 emissions. The Alto 800 and the Alto K10 run on the same powertrains as the Maruti Celerio, Maruti Omni and Maruti WagonR. Once the up gradation of both the engines is done, the other cars in the fleet of Maruti that draw power from these powertrains will also follow with the similar emission norms.
However, switching from a BSIV- to BSVI-compliant engine will increase the prices of the Alto siblings by Rs 10,000 to Rs 20,000. It is going to be one of the biggest challenges that the company will have to face in its entire time on the Indian roads. The Alto price range currently starts from Rs 2.51 lakh and go up to Rs 4.19 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). When it comes to internal combustion engines, diesel engines are reportedly harder to make cleaner to run in comparison to petrol engines, which may add on to the cost of BSVI diesel cars by up to Rs 1 lakh. However, the company will try to cut the costs of their cars at bay to ensure their suitability and profitability with the Indian economy.
The deadline stated by the Indian government for the car manufacturers to make their vehicles BSVI-compliant is April 2020 and so the automobile manufacturers are gearing up to meet up the requirements of the compliance before the deadline. Hyundai and Jeep are also coming up with BSVI engine variant in the SUV segment. Hyundai has announced the next generation of its 1.6-litre diesel engine, the 1.6-litre U3 CRDI that will be put in the Optima and will be showcased at the Geneva Motor Show in March 2018. There is a possibility of a significant drop in power when the revised emission norms will come into play.