Honda Cars India could discontinue diesel powered cars in the Indian market thanks to the tightening emission norms. India will require all cars sold here to adhere to Real Time Driving Emissions (RDE) from 2023, and this is said to be behind Honda’s decision to axe diesel powered cars. Currently, Honda sells three diesel cars in India – the City sedan, the WR-V crossover and the Amaze compact sedan. All three cars use the same 1.5 liter all-aluminium i-DTEC turbo diesel engine with 98.6 Bhp-200 Nm outputs. This diesel engine was specifically developed for the Indian market, and is manufactured at the automaker’s Tapukara factory in Rajasthan.
Meanwhile, Takuya Tsumura, president & CEO of Honda Cars India had this to say about the Japanese automaker’s future plans,
We are now not thinking too much about diesel. It’s very hard to clear RDE with the diesel. Even in Europe, most of the brands could not continue with diesel.
Honda’s next big launch for the Indian car market will be a compact SUV. Speculations are rife that Honda will launch the HR-V in the Indian market, as a Hyundai Creta rival. An official statement regarding the SUV’s launch has come from Honda India’s CEO, who also added that the new vehicle would be launched in India next year. Here’s what he said,
We did some restructuring in the last few years and it was a bit of a tough time but I can now say it is done, the company now has a healthy constitution. I can say that we have bottomed out this year and from now on we are only going to go up. The SUV market has grown robustly and now accounts for around 50 per cent of the overall passenger vehicle segment. We are not participating in that segment. We are confident that with the launch of the SUV next year, we will enhance volumes. We are confident about that model…well it would be hard to become number one ..player but still there will be some demand there so we want to attack that area.
The Honda HR-V has received a full generation change globally, and is expected to be brought to India as an upmarket SUV. Both front wheel drive and all wheel drive trims could be launched here. However, the HR-V will be a petrol-only offering, and this may somewhat limit its appeal in the SUV segment, where buyers prefer diesels.