The recent news which could be the biggest breaking in the future of the automotive industry in India is that Maruti Suzuki seems to be working on ethanol-powered vehicles! Due to the BS6 norms coming in, Maruti completely ditched the diesel car lineup. With almost a year ahead of the decision, we can definitely say that diesel is not coming back to India as far as Maruti’s lineup is considered.
In a recent content piece, Autocar India confirmed that Maruti is eyeing the production of ethanol-powered flex-fuel vehicles in India. This is because Kenichi Ayukawa who is the CEO of Maruti Suzuki India Limited said that apart from developing EVs, they are actively working towards pursuing ethanol as the Indian government has already announced flex-fuel. It would be great to see we expect cars to run on the flex-fuel really soon.
However, upon asking for timelines, we would agree on what he said. Research takes time and introducing a completely new fuel and making it customer-friendly at the same will be a tricky task and will of course, take a lot of time and effort. Talking about the lineup, the upcoming flex-fuel Maruti Suzuki cars will join the lineup along with the already existing petrol and CNG cars which means we can be worry-free about CNG being a long term prospect. It definitely is!
The shift towards Maruti Suzuki introducing ethanol-powered vehicles will also make other automakers curious to break into the competition. Suzuki, the parent brand also has got nothing in terms of flex-fuel engines in their portfolio so it will definitely be a great thing to witness how Suzuki researches on flex-fuel and then MSIL makes it feasible for the Indian market!