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Old 11th October 2007, 13:52   #1
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Post Diesel's European roadmap in india

11 Oct, 2007, 0256 hrs IST,Nandini Sen Gupta, TNN

As diesel vehicles hit top gear in India, its tech suppliers are also betting big on this market. Like CRDi maker Bosch, Honeywell Turbo Technologies is also stepping on the gas in India. In a chat with ET AutoMania, managing director India Sanjay Sondhi discusses why turbo chargers make perfect sense for your cars. Excerpts:

full article here :

Diesel's European roadmap in india- Auto-Specials-The Economic Times
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Old 11th October 2007, 16:21   #2
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I disagree with his drawing an analogy to Europe. There are some significant differences between why diesels are so popular in India, and the same in Europe. To start with, diesel is MORE expensive than petrol in some parts of the EU. Even where it is cheaper, the difference is not as much as in India. One of the major reasons behind diesel popularity in Europe is the additional tax benefits that come with small diesels. Of course, diesels are more fuel-efficient and that only extends the cost savings more. But I do feel that European drivers are amongst the most mature worldwide. And a good number of them buy diesels for the better driveability. This popularity may also have something to do with European car makers being more competent at diesels than petrols!

In India, a significantly lower price per liter is primary reason to diesel success. This is due to government subsidies, and we have seen the government reducing the price differential in recent times. Also, average Indian driving distances are far shorter than say....in the Europe or the States. Thus, there is a significant % of the market that simply does not want a diesel at all. That said, common-rails in an increasing number of cars (especially small) will undoubtedly increase diesel popularity in India even more.

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In 1998, only 3% of all cars in india were diesel. in 2006, that number went up to 25-26% (according to our internal data). So it’s following the trend as in Europe. India has long battled with the concept of dirty diesel which has now largely disappeared due to CRDi and turbo chargers.
He has missed the real reason. An overwhelming majority of car sales in India are from small cars. And in 1998, there simply weren’t enough options available for a diesel small car!! For instance….Indica deliveries itself started in 1999 while the Palio D, Swift Diesel etc. arrived much later. The reasons didnt have as much to do with "dirty diesel" as it did with limited availability.

Last edited by GTO : 11th October 2007 at 16:23.
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Old 11th October 2007, 18:19   #3
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I agree with GTO.

If the reason for slow growth in the diesel car market was the "dirty diesel" thing, how do one explain, the likes of Merc getting their new diesels into the country at that time? As far as I know (dont have statistics to prove), Merc has always sold more diesels than petrols.

Diesel car options were minimal and was rarely available to the small car buyer. Maruti had lost complete confidence in diesels after the ZEN and Esteem D saga.

Manufacturers except Tata who's core competency was diesels opted to play safe with petrol and sideline diesel.

Another major deterrent was the premium on the diesel car. I know diesel engines are more costly to build and maintain, but does that justify the price difference of over 70-80000 Rs??

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Old 12th October 2007, 15:06   #4
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Quote:
Maruti had lost complete confidence in diesels after the ZEN and Esteem D saga.
LOL!! The sales as well as the cars themselves were outright disasters.
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Old 12th October 2007, 15:17   #5
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Quote:
Another major deterrent was the premium on the diesel car. I know diesel engines are more costly to build and maintain, but does that justify the price difference of over 70-80000 Rs??
True, But for most people it pinch when they pay more for every gas fill than to pay the Rs.80,000 upfront. Also what I noticed in Kerala is that more people prefer Diesels though they drive less and the running mileage do not justify the diesel cost savings. And most of them do so not because they feel that diesel cars are more drivable than petrol siblings.
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Old 12th October 2007, 15:42   #6
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In Europe fuel itself costs a lot whether diesel or petrol. So they do like the efficiency of diesels. In U.S they were put off by the black smoke and also because petrol used to be dirt cheap.
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Old 12th October 2007, 16:23   #7
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I think diesel has a good potential in India considering the difference in cost between Petrol and diesel. This does not exist in any european countries. Another main factor is that europeans have good roads and we don't... In bad roads Diesel has an edge over petrol in fuel efficiency.

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
LOL!! The sales as well as the cars themselves were outright disasters.
I would not agree that it was a disaster. May be it was not a hit bcz of poor marketting...
My friend's ZenD (Introductory model - Sep 1997) ran 3,25,000 Kms before breaking down. It gave 17 Kmpl just before breaking down even when driven through country roads. In highways it used to give 26Kmpl during good times. The only maintenance was
1) Regular oil change
2) Changing front bush kit set every 30,000 Kms (200 Rs)

He had a pump problem when the vehicle was 1,25,000 Kms, So he fitted in a TVS Lucas pump removing the old one. This cost Rs.3500.

Considering the other diesels which breakdown in <1 Lakh Kms, i find this Zen with Pugeot engine very reliable.

-Sethuram

Last edited by ksethuram : 12th October 2007 at 16:24.
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Old 12th October 2007, 16:53   #8
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Diesel vehicles have become very popular in Europe and their market share has increased from a little over 10% in 1980 to 46% in 2005. In some countries in Europe such as France and Austria, diesel vehicles account for over half of all cars. In North America, however, diesel powered cars account for less then 0.5% of the total market. These vehicles enjoyed a brief burst of popularity in the 1979-1984 period, but in 2004 only one manufacturer (VW) offered diesel light-duty vehicles in North America. In US, diesel has not succeeded historically because of reduced power (Americans typically higher powered, bigger engine cars), increased noise and higher vibration.
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Old 12th October 2007, 17:05   #9
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In many EU countries such as France, Germany, Netherlands; diesel has lower excise than unleaded gasoline. UK has equal excise.

IEA data for June 2007 indicates per litre (in euro) cost for diesel (D) and gasoline (RON 95) or P:

France 1.064 (D), 1.311 (P). Excise amount in this is 0.426 (D), 0.589 (P)
Germany 1.083 (D), 1.255 (P). Excise amount in this is 0.47 (D), 0.655 (P)
Italy 1.126 (D), 1.289 (P).
UK 0.919 pound (D); 0.949 pound (P)
US $0.674 (D); $0.574 (P)
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