Quadricycles: the new segment in Indian auto scene

Friday 14 December 2012, 10:20 AM by

For those unfamiliar with 'Quadricycle', the term actually means a four-wheeler automobile with a small motor of size positioned between a passenger car and three-wheeler. The Government of India has already given a go ahead to the quadricycle segment. The relatively unknown class of vehicles have no obligation to meet the emission and safety norms of a regular passenger car and actually have their own set of regulations.

The Ministry of Roads has also constituted a committee, in order to examine all technical aspects of vehicles to be built for the quadricycle segment. The committee considers all the safety and emission norms to be levied on quadricycles, which could prove beneficial for the Government of India to announce a regulating policy for such vehicles in the country. At present, the quadricycle segment is operational only in European auto markets with Renault Twizy being one of the few examples.

The quadricycle scenario in the country is slightly obscure at present and just one vehicle could be called a true blood that ticks all the boxes to be eligible for this segment. That vehicle is Bajaj Auto's RE60 four wheeler quadricycle, which the company showcased at the New Delhi Auto Expo held in January 2012. Few others auto majors operating on Indian turf have also expressed interest in quadricycle segment, such as Mahindra and Mahindra Limited (M&M), Piaggio and TVS Motor Company.

Regarding the new class of vehicle, Rajiv Bajaj, Managing Director (MD), Bajaj Auto believes that a quadricycle cannot be compared with a regular car and feels that there is a complete segment differential. According to Bajaj, a quadricycle gives out about 50 per cent CO2/km emission as compared to a normal car, while delivering an impressive fuel efficiency around 35 km per litre.

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