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Diesel car sales plummet to 5 year low this fiscal

Diesel car sales in India 2015

With disparity in prices of petrol and diesel reducing, customer preference has been witnessing a slow but steady shift in trend in favor of petrol cars.

Sales of diesel carsĀ in India have hit a five year low this fiscal (till May 2015) with only 33% of cars sold in the domestic market are powered by the cheaper fuel. In 2012-13 fiscal, diesel car sales peaked with a proportion of 47%.

Diesel car sales in India 2015

Owing to declining demand for diesel variants, Maruti shelved its plans to set up second diesel engine plant.

This downturn can be attributed to factors such as reducing price gap between petrol and diesel as automotive fuels (additional cost of over INR 1 lakhs for diesel variant compared to petrol variant of same model is no longer justified) and policies like NGT ban which prevents diesel vehicles that are more than 10 year old from plying NCR roads. The NGT ban resulted in drastic drop in resale value of diesel cars.

From January 2013 to June 2015, the price difference between petrol and diesel fuels has reduced by nearly INR 4 rupees per litre. As things stand now, diesel is just INR 16.03 per litre more expensive than petrol. Deregulation on diesel by the government has resulted in increased price. The price difference is poised to come down further in the future.

OEMs like Maruti, Ford, Honda, GM, VW and Mahindra who rely on their diesel models are reporting sales decline. So, the production split has now tilted in favor of petrol models. It’s estimated that the diesel car sales will stabilize at 25-30% on a long term with upcoming new compact crossovers as the main contributors.

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About the author

Sagar Patel

Sagar Patel

A first drive in a manual rickety old van was enough to pave the road forward for Sagar Patel. When not driving or riding, his dexterity shifts gear to voice passion through words via reviews, and news, all the while, closely monitoring updates from the auto industry.

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