India's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India on Tuesday introduced its new 1.5-litre DDIS 225 Diesel engine in its seven-seater people mover Ertiga just days after it announced it would phase out all its diesel cars in April 2020.
Developed in house, the new 4-cylinder engine replaces the 1.3-litre multijet diesel powertrain that was sourced by Maruti from Italian carmaker Fiat. The new engine has a peak torque of 225Nm @1500-2500rpm, maximum power of 95bhp@ 4000rpm and fuel efficiency of 24.20 kpl. The outgoing 1.3-litre diesel engine developed 89bhp of power and 200 NM of torque. It came with a 5-speed manual transmission and had a marginally higher 25.47 kpl fuel economy. The engine needed to be replaced as it could not be made compliant with the new BS VI emission norms that kick in from April 1, 2020. Last month, Maruti had introduced the same engine in its mid-size sedan Ciaz.
Available in three variants, the diesel Ertiga is priced at Rs 9.86-11.20 lakh and is mated to a 6-speed manual transmission. The company has discontinued the base diesel variant of the outgoing version that was priced at Rs 8.85 lakh and added a new variant at the top of the trim.
"Considering the requirements of evolving customers, the Next Gen Ertiga is now offered with new 1.5-litre Diesel engine. The new engine is a perfect combination of performance and refinement," said R.S. Kalsi, Senior Executive Director, Marketing and Sales, Maruti Suzuki India. "It showcases Maruti Suzuki's commitment to provide products aligned with customers aspirations. We are sure this new engine option will strengthen the popularity of Ertiga in the urban MPV (Multi purpose vehicle) segment."
Ever since it was given a full life-cycle refresh in November 2018, Ertiga has been one of the runaway hits with sales of over 40,000 units in Nov-April period, a growth of over 150 per cent compared to the same period last year. It has a 39 per cent share in its segment.
While announcing its plans to phase out its diesel models, Maruti had put in a caveat that it will consider the option of making this 1.5 litre diesel engine compliant with the new emission norms, subject to demand from consumers. Diesel cars will become significantly more expensive from April 2020 due to newer components like diesel particulate filter being added to the car. The additional cost is likely to wean consumer away to the cheaper petrol alternatives but MPVs and SUVs (Sport utility vehicle) are still likely to have significant takers for the diesel versions.