Maruti Suzuki has updated the Celerio and Celerio X with new safety features. This move is to ensure that the Celerio and the Celerio X confirm to the Bharat New Vehicle Safety Assessment Program (BNVSAP) norms, which have come into effect from the 1st of April 2019. The updated Maruti Celerio and Celerio X models now get front driver and passenger airbags, front driver and passenger seat belt reminder, ABS, rear parking sensors, central locking and speed alert system as standard. The upgraded Celerio’s prices start from Rs. 4.31 lakhs, ex-showroom Delhi and those of the Celerio X start from Rs. 4.81 lakhs.
The Maruti Celerio hatchback rivals the likes of the Hyundai Santro and the Tata Tiago. The Celerio X is a rugged looking version of the car, with body cladding and other styling bits. Both cars get a 1 liter-3 cylinder petrol engine as standard. This motor makes 67 Bhp-90 Nm, and is known for its refined, rev happy nature. 5 speed manual and AMT options are available with this engine, which also powers other entry-level cars from Maruti such as the WagonR and the Alto K10. The Celerio was available with a twin cylinder turbodiesel engine for a brief period. Low levels of refinement in the Celerio Diesel made customers reject it, prompting Maruti to discontinue the car.
To make up for the lack of a diesel engine in the Celerio line-up, Maruti has the CNG-Petrol dual fuel variant on offer. The CNG option is available only with the regular Celerio, in the VXi and VXi (O) trim. Sometime in 2020, we expect most budget cars in India to move away from diesel engines, towards petrol, CNG and LPG powered engines. This is because the new, Bharat Stage 6 emission norms will kick in from April 2020, and these norms will make diesel engined cars a lot costlier thanks to the expensive emission control equipment that diesels will need in order to meet the much stricter norms.
This would make small diesel cars too pricey, and customers are likely to shift towards petrol, CNG and LPG cars. Car makers are likely to speeden this shift by dumping diesel engined powered small cars. Also, the Indian government has plans to set up a wider network of LPG and CNG dispensing stations across the country in order to facilitate the move away from diesel engined cars in the affordable car segments. Some manufacturers like Tata Motors, Maruti Suzuki and Mahindra are also planning to introduce a slew of electric vehicles, most of which will be based on existing car models. Maruti for its part, will introduce the WagonR Electric in 2020. However, it will be a while before customers begin opting for electric cars and move totally away from the internal combustion engine. Until this happens, CNG and LPG powered cars are expected to act as a bridge.
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