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Honda will not produce diesel engines in India from February 2023 | Autocar India

Written by Rashmi

Amaze and Metropolis to lose diesel engine choices; price of upgrading the present engine to strict RDE norms not justfiable.

Honda will cease providing the choice of a diesel engine in its India line-up from early subsequent 12 months, sources have informed our sister publication Autocar Skilled. Honda at present has 4 diesel-powered fashions on sale in India; these embody the Metropolis, Amaze, Jazz and the WR-V.

  1. Honda will cease making all forms of diesel engines in India
  2. Presently manufactures 1.5-litre and 1.6-litre diesel engines
  3. Upgradation prices to adjust to RDE norms not possible

Honda bids goodbye to diesel engines in India

Forward of the implementation of the Actual Driving Emissions (RDE) norms in India from April 2023, the Japanese carmaker will cease manufacturing of its 1.5-litre i-DTEC diesel engine that’s at present being provided within the Amaze, Metropolis (fifth technology) in addition to the WR-V crossover.

The brand new RDE norms, which name for giant investments in diesel engines to improve them to satisfy the stiff new emission rules, have led to the axing of a number of diesel fashions throughout manufacturers. As an illustration, the Hyundai Grand i10 Nios and Aura compact sedan silently gave up on a diesel engine providing earlier this 12 months, whereas the premium i20 hatchback is lined up subsequent to lose this feature.

Clients in India can nonetheless purchase diesel-powered Hondas till the top of March 2023, however the firm plans to exhaust its diesel stock in showrooms throughout the nation earlier than the extra stringent emission requirements kick in, precisely three years after BS VI emission norms have been mandated from April 1, 2020.

Honda Automobiles India has already stopped producing diesel-powered Jazz, WR-V in addition to choose variants of the Amaze compact sedan. Moreover, the carmaker is within the strategy of phasing out the present technology Jazz, WR-V and Metropolis (fourth technology) in the end of time because the three fashions are nearing the top of their lifecycle. The remainder of the portfolio will see the top of lifetime of diesel variants between December 2022 and February 2023.

Autocar Skilled studies that after the implementation of BS VI emission norms in April 2020, 21 p.c of Honda’s complete automotive gross sales got here from the 1.5-litre diesel powertrain. This share, nonetheless, has additional declined to solely 7 p.c of its complete gross sales on account of a shift within the buyer’s choice in the direction of petrol-powered automobiles. HCIL registered gross sales of about 30,000 to 35,000 models of diesel autos between CY2020 and CY2022.

Honda launched the 1.5-litre diesel engine – christened ‘i-DTEC’ – in India in 2013 with the launch of the first-gen Amaze compact sedan. The corporate states that the BS VI-compliant engine has a licensed gas effectivity of 24.7kpl within the Amaze manual-transmission variant, whereas it delivers 24.1kpl within the bigger Metropolis sedan. Within the WR-V crossover, this 1.5 diesel powerplant supplies a licensed gas effectivity of 23.7kpl.

Full cease on made-in-India Honda diesel engines

Aside from stopping the manufacturing of the 1.5-lit diesel, sources have revealed that HCIL will even stop manufacturing and exports of the 1.6-litre diesel engine from March 2023. At current, India exports this 1.6-litre powerplant to Thailand to be used within the Honda CR-V in abroad markets, together with Thailand and the Philippines.

The 1.6-litre diesel which is made in India for export functions will even be axed.

It’s learnt that HCIL’s suppliers have been notified about this deliberate phase-out of those diesel engines properly upfront, and the corporate will cease producing them at its plant in Tapukara, Rajasthan.

Ditching diesel in keeping with international development

Honda’s resolution to drop diesel from its portfolio could be understood to be in keeping with total market tendencies. Over the previous few years, main carmakers in India in addition to abroad have already exited or outlined their plans to maneuver away from the diesel-engine phase, significantly within the small-displacement (sub-2-litre) class the place the technological price of conforming to much more stringent emission requirements is comparatively excessive.

Over the previous decade, the share of diesel autos in India has fallen sharply from the height of 54 p.c to 20 p.c, and the shift accelerated after the BS VI Part-I emission norms implementation. The contribution of diesel in hatchbacks and sedans has virtually vanished, with SUVs now accounting for a lion’s share of the demand.

Whereas the likes of Hyundai, Kia, Mahindra & Mahindra and Tata Motors proceed to supply a diesel various within the compact and midsize SUV segments, the Japanese OEM brigade has, nonetheless, given up on diesel, and is as a substitute specializing in hybrid powertrain know-how.

Harder standards with RDE norms

The upcoming RDE norms will job OEMs to satisfy the emission targets, significantly these listed for particulate matter (PM) and nitrogen oxide (NOx) within the BS VI pointers, now within the real-world driving situation somewhat than simply being on an engine check bench. This could successfully imply the requirement of a near-optimal emissions efficiency in various geographical eventualities throughout India.

Trade consultants say that it might, subsequently, necessitate implementing applied sciences like selective catalytic discount or SCR (additional NOx discount), which is at present utilized in high-displacement engines and can show extraordinarily price inhibitive, significantly for diesel engines as much as 1,500cc displacement.

Honda, nonetheless, will proceed to concentrate on its famend i-VTEC petrol engine know-how with the 1.2-litre and 1.5-litre, naturally aspirated petrol engines powering the Amaze and Metropolis fashions, respectively, in India. It should additionally concentrate on the newly launched strong-hybrid drivetrain within the Metropolis e:HEV.

In the meantime, Honda is engaged on bringing a brand-new SUV to the Indian market across the center of 2023 to regain its market share that has seen a major drop previously few years because of the lack of a robust SUV product portfolio. The brand new midsize SUV will include each petrol and strong-hybrid powertrains. Honda hopes the hybrid know-how will compensate for its exit in diesel, although it stays to be seen how competitively the 1.5-litre hybrid engine (which is dear within the Metropolis) could be priced.

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Rashmi