A Financial Express newspaper report states that Maruti will launch a diesel-powered Eeco in 2016. The Maruti Eeco diesel will be pitched as a commuter van, competing (in terms of price and application) with the Tata Ace Magic and the Mahindra Maxximo.
The Eeco diesel will be marketed predominantly in rural and semi-urban markets as a last mile transporter. While the van is currently available with a petrol engine as well as CNG, only about 15 cities in India retail CNG, that is turning out to be a very expensive fuel option. In Tier II and Tier III areas especially, diesel continues to be the natural choice of fuel.
A Maruti official told the newspaper that the share of rural markets in total sales currently stands at 32 percent, which is an increase from 28 percent two years ago. Cars such as the Wagon R, Alto, Omni and Eeco are top sellers in these markets, the official revealed.
A company source says that the Eeco will gradually replace the Omni. The source further said that the diesel engine for the Eeco will be the very same diesel engine that will be used in Maruti's upcoming LCV codenamed Y9T. This engine, which is likely to be an 800 cc two-cylinder motor, will be Maruti's first self-developed diesel engine as the brand currently relies on Fiat for its diesel powertrains.
[Source - Financial Express]