Honda to bring diesel engined cars to India: Official Word Emerges!
Honda SIEL seems to be on a resurgence of sorts. First we had superb product repositioning strategies with the Honda City Sedan and Honda Jazz Hatchback seeing big price drops on account of what Honda would like us to believe, increased localization which has led to massive cost savings. Then came the superbly priced Honda Brio, which at a starting price of INR 3.95 Lakhs, ex-showroom Delhi has all the trappings of being a best seller. Now, Honda has just come out with the most important of announcements yet, of that of Honda bringing in diesel engines for its Indian line up.
While this isn’t exactly something we hadn’t reported earlier, Honda SIEL officials openly speaking about diesel engines for Honda cars in India only means that Brand Honda is going all out to ensure that it manages to stay relevant in the Indian market by adapting itself to the growing trend of diesel engined cars outselling petrol engined cars in India owing to high petrol prices and the big difference in pricing between petrol and diesel fuel. Currently, Honda sells six models in India, the Brio, the Jazz, the City, the Civic, the CR-V and the Accord.
Of these cars, European variants of the Civic, CR-V and Accord already feature powerful and frugal common rail, turbo diesel engines. So, only three of Honda’s six cars in India actually need brand new diesel engines developed from scratch. For the record, Honda has already begun development of diesel engines on a war footing with engineers from Honda’s former F1 program actually being involved in this high stakes project. Hence, it is just a matter of time before Honda comes up with small capacity diesel engines for its Indian bread-and-butter product line up, although the firm remains tight lipped about when exactly the new small capacity diesel engines will be available.
Meanwhile, here’s official word emerging about Honda’s diesel engined car model plans for the Indian market, from Mr Jnaneswar Sen, Vice-President (Sales and Marketing) HSCI.
The Research and Development team in Japan is developing diesel engines. It is premature to say that the products will be rolled out on diesel (platform).