Maruti Suzuki India Limited is ready to bring more fuel efficient cars to India including the hybrid cars. The company is working on an ambitious plan to launch electric cars and compressed natural gas (CNG) variants for three or four models in the domestic market. The plan is part of the company’s broad strategy to develop small cars that run on alternative fuel technology.
“We are developing electric car technology for India. But it might take us up to the next five years or more to manufacture and sell electric cars in the domestic market,” said Maruti Suzuki Managing Director Shinzo Nakanishi. “You have Honda and Toyota, which have proven, commercially viable hybrid technology cars. But internationally, they sell in small volumes. Globally, Suzuki is known as a low-cost car manufacturer selling in large volumes. We would like to achieve that for electric cars in India,” he added.
"We are working on multi-fuel variants and some models have been identified for CNG. A CNG kit currently costs over Rs 40,000 and that is expensive. Also, these cars can only be launched in 2010 or 2011, when there is a pan-India CNG filling system from companies like Reliance," added Maruti Suzuki Chairman, R C Bhargava.
Currently, Maruti sells LPG variants of 800 and WagonR and is also looking at bringing CNG models in the Indian auto market.