If someone is looking at buying a diesel car, there can’t be a better time. Ahead of the BSVI norms that take effect on April 1, 2020, passenger vehicle makers are pulling out all stops to woo the buyers in a bid to beat the price hike of 8-15 per cent on diesel models.
Based on the engine size and body type, the gap between the acquisition cost of a diesel vehicle and its gasoline counterpart, which is close to Rs 110,000 to Rs 115,000, is expected to go up to Rs 170,000 to Rs 200,000 once the new emission norms kick in.
Depending on the make and model, buyers of diesel variants can avail of several benefits ranging from a hefty exchange bonus, cash discounts, and extended warranty. The offers come amid one of the worst and prolonged slowdowns that the automobile industry is witnessing.
Auto sales in India have been on a decline for the past 13 months. Companies are hoping to minimise the decline in volumes with the sales push during the festive season. The two-month-long festive season began with Ganesh Chaturthi on Monday.
“I think, this is best time to buy a BSIV diesel car,” said Shashank Srivastava, executive director, sales and marketing, Maruti Suzuki India. Rajan Wadhera, president automotive sector, Mahindra and Mahindra, also agreed. If one is looking to buy a diesel vehicle, personal or commercial, the time is now,” said Wadhera.
So far, the schemes and offers on diesel hasn’t yielded much results, he said. Most buyers are oblivious of the sharp increase in price that will happen after BSVI, he added.
With the exception of the XUV3OO, Mahindra has offered up to Rs 40,000 on its entire line up of diesel variants.
Maruti, which plans to phase out variants powered by small diesel engines (1.2 litre), announced a five-year extended warranty scheme on the Alto, Brezza, Swift, Dzire and Eeco models last month. Besides, the extended warranty buyers can get benefits up to Rs 100,000 on the diesel variants of the aforementioned models.
Srivastava said the scheme launched last month had led to a 5 per cent increase in company’s diesel car sales in August compared to July. The idea behind launching a scheme was to assure and repose confidence among the buyers. Maruti will continue to honour the service commitments of the BSIV diesel variants, said Srivastava.
Share of diesel vehicles in total passenger vehicles sales has been shrinking year-on-year (YoY) and is expected to reduce further after the implementation of BSVI.
The share of diesel vehicles, which was 58 per cent in 2012, has been coming down YoY. It ended the calendar year 2018 with 37.9 per cent. Year-to-date it is 34 per cent and therefore,
in all likelihood it will end the year lower than last year, Srivastava said, adding besides the higher acquisition cost of the vehicle the reducing price gap between diesel and fuel will also make diesel unviable.