With the narrowing price gap between diesel and petrol, combined with an increasing difference in prices of petrol and diesel cars, around 32% car buyers bought diesel cars last year
The demand for diesel cars is definitely in a free fall. While as many as 60% of total car sales in 2011-2012 came from diesel models, the number went down to just 32% in 2019. However, in spite of this, over 93% of all Mahindra cars sold in 2019 were diesel-powered.
Last year, the homegrown UV specialist sold a total of 219,718 cars. Out of these, petrol cars accounted for just 12,447 units, while electric cars found 875 buyers. The rest of the 206,396 units that were sold were powered by diesel engines.
In an age where the focus is fast shifting from diesel towards petrol engines, the popularity of diesel models in Mahindra’s portfolio doesn’t come across as even remotely surprising as UV buyers prefer a diesel engine over a petrol one.
That said, the demand for diesel cars in India is certainly on a huge decline. A large part of this is due to the fast reducing gap in the prices of petrol and diesel. In 2011-12, the price gap between petrol and diesel peaked at Rs 31. The difference was reduced to just Rs 10.1 in 2017-18 and to Rs 7.1 in 2019. This year, it has so far averaged at Rs 6.5. In fact, in some states like that of Chattisgarh, Goa, Odisha and Gujarat, diesel is costlier than petrol. Hence, some companies have altogether dropped diesel-powered cars from their portfolio.
However, as Mahindra’s lineup comprises solely of UVs, the company will continue to offer diesel engines on all their models. Speaking on this, Rajan Whadhwa, President-auto sector of Mahindra & Mahindra, has said,“Diesel vehicles are becoming expensive due to the technology that goes in to meet the BS6 emission norms. As a result, the entry-level segment is shifting to gasoline. The value buyer is moving to gasoline but the fun, more premium buyer still wants the high torque diesel,”
Mahindra will, however, start offering even a petrol engine option on at least some of its models. While there will be a 1.2-litre petrol motor, which will be a BS6 version of the engine that powers the KUV100, there will be even a 1.5-litre gasoline option that will be launched in the BS6 era.
Data Source: AutoPunditz