Report - New Indian fuel efficiency norms mandates 14 percent increase in mileage by 2016-17

14/02/2014 - 14:45 | ,  ,  ,   | Karthik H

In a move that will possibly arrest the growth of SUVs in India, the Indian government has notified minimum fuel efficiency norms for passenger vehicles that are sold in India.

Maruti Alto 800 front and rear fascia
New fuel efficiency norms could mean more hatchbacks for India.

The norms proposed by the Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE) stipulate that from 2016-17, passenger vehicles must increase its mileage by 14 percent and 38 percent by 2021-22. The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways will impose harsh penalties for violations, like in the US, Germany, Japan and China.

A report on The Economic Times crunches the numbers and says that passenger vehicles - cars and utility vehicles - right now average around 16 km to the liter. The mandated average by the new norms is 18.2 km by 2016-17 and 22 km by 2021-22.

Tata Nexon Concept
The new norms could also mean lighter compact SUVs for India.

The new norms, named Corporate Average Fuel Consumption (CAFC) will be mandatory for vehicles running on petrol, diesel and any form of gas and will apply also to imported vehicles. Fuel consumption will be calculated based on the vehicle's weight and the ministry will create 8 different weight categories in order to accommodate all vehicles.

The BEE has also proposed a star-rating system, like with electricity consumption in household appliances, to indicate a vehicle's fuel consumption.

Global NCAP Hyundai i10 crash test press shot
The cost required to meet the new norms could see OEMs treating safety as a trade-off when the most popular cars in India already fail to meet basic safety requirements.

Predictably, the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), has reacted by saying that implementing these norms would be difficult and that it would entail huge costs for OEMs who are struggling in a slowing market.

This will also, SIAM says, see the cost of vehicles going up or there being a trade-off in other parameters like safety at a time when the most popular Indian cars, also the most fuel efficient, fail to meet basic safety standards.

[Source - The Economic Times]

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