Maruti Suzuki, India’s largest carmaker, has said that carbon dioxide emission by its fleet of vehicles is the least among peers, so it is comfortably placed to meet the upcoming CAFE norms. Maruti has achieved low emissions without having a single fully-electric model in its fold.
CAFE, or Corporate Average Fuel Economy, is a set limit on the total emission of carbon dioxide by not just one model of the manufacturer but its entire fleet. These norms are directly related to the overall fuel consumption of the vehicles, forcing manufacturers to improve the fuel efficiency of their offerings.
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The CAFE-II norms, which are set to be adopted on April 1, 2023, have provisions to recover penalties from the carmakers in case they fail to comply with the norms. The penalties could be `25,000 or `50,000 on each vehicle of the manufacturer.
Speaking to analysts, Rahul Bharti, general manager corporate strategy and investor relations, Maruti Suzuki India, said, “Maruti has the least fleet carbon dioxide emission in the entire Indian car industry, despite all the global players present here. It will get better with time. This year will be better than last year. We are comfortably positioned on CAFE (norms).”
The Delhi-based maker of the Baleno and the Brezza said that the company is “comfortably positioned” to meet the new norms. There will be some cost impact due to the transition but it will not be as significant as those seen during the transition to BS-6 from BS-4.
Companies that have diesel models in their portfolio have a greater penalty risk. Diesel models will also have a much steeper jump in overall costs after the transition to the new norms, say manufacturers.
“We understand that on diesel there will be a sizeable (cost) impact. And this is one of the reasons why we had taken the call on diesel much earlier (of discontinuation),” Bharti added. Maruti does not offer any diesel options; it has only petrol, CNG and petrol-hybrid models.
Having an electric model in the line-up directly brings down carbon dioxide emissions at the overall level. A petrol-hybrid model can generate 50% more fuel economy than conventional petrol-only models, thereby helping the company to boost the total fuel economy.
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Maruti, which has the largest fleet in the country with more than a dozen models, recently launched its first strong hybrid model, the Grand Vitara, which gives a combined mileage of 28 km/litre.
With regard to penalties, Bharti said that the matter is under discussion and there needs to be more clarity on its implementation.
“It is still a subject under discussion but our understanding is that it will need more detailing and a framework of rules to be implemented. We will have to understand the details,” Bharti said.