India will move to Bharat Stage 6 or BS6 emissions regulations from April 1, 2020. With new emissions norms kicking in, new technology will be needed to keep emissions in check, in particular for new diesel engine vehicles. While it will be easier for petrol engines to meet BS6 emission standards with largely upgraded ECUs and engine mapping along with some exhaust after-treatment, the diesel cars will need a whole new type of technology in order to reduce emissions. These new add-ons are said to increase the prices of diesel cars even further and increase the gap between a new petrol car and a new diesel car by nearly 2.5 lakh rupees if taken into consideration something like a premium hatchback, subcompact sedan or entry-level compact sedan.
Speaking to NDTV on the sidelines of Maruti Suzuki's annual press meet, R.C.Bhargava, Chariman, Maruti Suzuki Limited said that the gap between a new petrol and a new diesel car after BS6 norms come into play will be as high as Rs 2.5 lakh for Maruti Suzuki cars. He also added that the sentiment towards diesel cars in general was lower and that the car buying public was slowly moving towards petrol cars once again and that trend would only continue once BS6 comes into play.
The increase in cost will mainly be because of the fact that new diesel cars will have to add several new layers into the diesel after treatment such as a DPF or a Diesel Particulate Filter and more importantly, the SCR system or Selective Catalytic Reduction system. What the SCR essentially does is inject DEF or diesel exhaust fluid or in simple terms, urea into the exhaust gasses thereby reducing the levels of NOx or Nitrogen Oxide.
Automakers like Maruti Suzuki have already announced its plans to have a BS6 vehicle range by the end of 2019 barring maybe one model while the likes of the new Tata Motors Harrier already comes with a BS6 compliant engine too. Luxury car makers too have already started launching BS6 ready cars in India. Mercedes-Benz, for example, was the first ever automaker to launch a BS6 ready car in India. Automakers are also pushing strongly for hybrid and electrification in order to reduce pollution and make cars more fuel efficient.