Mahindra & Mahindra has been the market leader in the UV segment for a long time but is now facing competition from Maruti Suzuki and Toyota. Mahindra is currently working to develop new petrol engines that will power Mahindra vehicles in the future, to fulfill the rising demand for petrol vehicles.
Diesel vehicles are taxed higher than petrol-powered vehicles in India, which has caused a sudden rise in demand for such vehicles. The narrow gap between the price of the petrol and diesel fuel is also one of the biggest factors in the decline of the demand for petrol vehicles in India. Most of Mahindra’s products are powered by only diesel engines, which has caused a decline in the market share in the UV segment. The manufacturer used to control 58 per cent of total sales in the segment in 2012-13. Its market share has come down to 40% in 2017-18.
Currently, only the Mahindra XUV500, Mahindra TUV300 and the Mahindra KUV100 get an option of a petrol engine. Rest of the products are sold with the only diesel engine options. Even though Mahindra offers the 2.2-litre engine with the XUV500, it is available with an only automatic variant. The engine itself is not as refined as petrol engines should be, and was launched after the rising demand for petrol-powered vehicles in the market.
Mahindra is now working to introduce petrol engines across their range of products and is developing various capacity engines for the same. The Indian government has set a 2020 deadline for the enforcement of the BS VI emission norms in India. It is expected that a lot of manufacturers will move away from diesel engines completely in the future due to the strict emission norms, which are quite difficult to meet with a diesel engine.
Interestingly, Mahindra will soon launch the S201 sub-4-meter compact SUV in the market that will take on the Maruti Vitara Brezza and the Ford EcoSport. It will get a powerful 1.2-litre turbocharged petrol engine that generates a maximum of 140 Bhp, which will be a class-leading power output. The engine has been developed with Mahindra’s subsidiary – SsangYong.