PrancingHorse

Diesel prices to rise in the coming months. Will diesel cars still be the flavour of choice for car buyers?

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A recent report just said that the Oil Ministry is planning to hike diesel prices by a minimum of 10 rupees over the next few months. That means diesel will no longer be the cheap fuel that it was. Car makers have also reported that the demand for diesel cars has gone down as well, they say due to the fact that buyers fear that diesel cars will be taxed more. So what do you think? Will the demand for diesel cars stay or will it fall further. Will buyers move towards petrol cars more? What would you do as a potential buyer?

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There are many theories which still say that Petrol is the way to go if you dont drive much every day. If diesel prices will go on par with petrol, I am sure it will be raining diesel cars in used car markets, just as there are petrol cars now a days.

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If the need is mostly to meet city driving, that too, from low (less than 10 km per day) to moderate use

(about 20 km per day), then it is beneficial to have a petrol car. Forget about diesel or the rate of diesel

or the taxes on diesel cars. Your need is petrol and you should ideally use a petrol car, which is cheaper

to buy and cheaper to maintain. On the other hand, if you do a lot of inter-city driving in addition to intra-city

driving and cover over 50 to 100 km daily, then the logical choice is diesel (as of now). Not that diesel is cheap.

But, diesel is better suited for long drives and for big vehicles. The reasons are many, but I will list only two.

One. Such long drives usually are full-capacity drives, mostly done in big cars (SUV/MPV/etc.,).

Usually, big cars come in diesel as they are more rugged than petrol cars. (have any one seen a Xylo or an Innova

in petrol ?)

Two. On such long drives, it is always easy to get diesel than getting petrol. I find many so-called-petrol-bunks

on highways do not sell petrol at all. Even in remote places and rural places, one can get diesel. Because, most

of the rural activities use diesel (like tractors, pumpsets, generators, etc.,) and it is relatively difficult to get petrol.

So, I feel that irrespective of govt's plans to raise diesel prices or raising more taxes on diesel cars, people will

buy diesel cars, if their motoring needs are huge and involve inter-city drivings.

Similarly, they will buy petrol cars, if their motoring needs are minimal to small, irrespective of the cost of petrol Vs diesel.

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Ramesh has covered the pros and cons of both fuels quite well. Pricing apart, I personally prefer how the modern diesels drive especially on the highways and in 'ghat' sections. The stronger lower end results in better drivability in these conditions. For users who operate their cars mostly in the city limits, a petrol car would definitely be better suited on all fronts.

Getting back to the price rise, I believe it would dent the sales of smaller diesel hatchbacks and sedans.

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I cant understand why people mostly talk about the economy of a diesel car if you see most of the hatchbacks and a few entry level sedans you would realise that the performance of a petrol is sad compared to its diesel counterpart. I have driven the ritz petrol and diesel and while the petrol feels plain throughout the power range the diesel thrills you with the turbo boost and much better torque (although you have to push it beyond 2k rpm thanks to turbo lag). The hyundai verna is another good example neatly showing that the diesel has similar power and tons of torque as compared to petrol.

However this is meant to change with the launch of eco-sport the first turbocharged petrol <10 lakhs. I am sure i would buy the petrol ecosport with all its bells and whistles rather than the good old diesel. As far as the prices are concerned in India it would just be a dream to see the price of petrol = diesel and not to mention diesel cars are more efficient and hence it would be economical if you choose to drive a lot. But there are many people who care for performance with economy for them diesel is the only choice until manufacturers come up with better petrol technology in India.

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Just kms cannot decide the use of a Diesel or a Petrol vehicle.

There are places in Delhi where just a 2km stretch takes a few hrs at peak time.So the you also need to take into account the time you spend on the road,idling .

There is still a long way to go inorder to match the prices of the two, till such time Diesel even with its high initial acquisition cost will continue to rule our roads.

Rs 1 per months for next 10 months looks reasonable enough if implemented.

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The price barrier btn petrol & diesel which is currently arround 21 Rs. Will then narrow down to 11 Rs. which is nearly equal to half! Which means that the monthly milometer criteria which is currently 1000-1500 Km will also needs to be doubled to 2000-3000 Km! This disqualifies 90% of indivisual car buyers & thats why Ford & VW are concentrating on smaller & fuel efficient petrol motors!

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Bumping up this topic after a while. Diesel prices are on a rise and there is now hardly a difference of 9 bucks and prices will continue going up while petrol prices have gone down. Do you think there will be an impact on diesel cars sales?

Diesel cars have advantage of being more fuel efficient but on the other hand have higher maintenance.

Diesel cars which once had long waiting period could probably be available off the shelf.

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Diesel cars have completed their life cycle in India, Petrol fuel automobile for passenger division will lead the cycle and remain top. Deregulation of Diesel will act as a last nail in the coffin of Diesel cars. No matter how good fuel efficient diesel car you buy, total running,maintenance and initial buying cost is far more than Petrol car.

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Yes, I also see sales of petrol cars getting stronger and stronger with diesel deregulation.

Earlier people (who don't need diesel) were still buying them because of the price difference in the fuels. It was sort of a mindset that people were willing to shell out extra at the time of buying a car (may be due to ease of loans?) and have a feeling of having saved some money when they refuel each time at a bunk.

With price difference falling, this mindset will see some change.

Also, we can already see cases in some car models where petrol is outselling diesel ones (due to better petrol engine options on offer or other case of inferior diesel options on offer).

I guess a 55-45 ratio (D to P) is where market will reach.

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I agree with Sachin here. The ratio was way off earlier somewhere close to 65-35 (D to P) which has narrowed down to almost 50-50 now.

The point here is, if you are using the car for more than 50-60 kms per day, diesel absolutely makes sense. Like PH mentioned, with the narrowing price gap, only those people who have substantial use would buy a diesel powered car.

For me, when I bought a diesel car recently, I made calculations on my daily run basis the deregulated price from the Shell fuel stations. That coupled with the EMI for a petrol variant vs a diesel variant and tentative maintenance expenses - from various owners, online information and the workshop itself.

Turned out that I still save more than Rs. 1300 a month considering all these expenses.

But these days, with the kinda traffic build up which chokes people in their cars for more than an hour for a distance as less as 10-15 kms, diesels would still make sense as they burn slow than the petrol fuel and overall you still end up saving a bit ;)

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Agree with the fellow posters above.

Petrol has lately got a boost in sales whereas Diesel sales have went downhill. I've even experienced this, as my very friend (With an average run of 1.5k p/m) bought himself a Fiesta Petrol without even thinking of the Diesel one.

I'm guessing, it would be somewhere in the ratio 60:40 to petrol in next 2 years.

Edited by LeoRahi

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Since after sometime there won't be much difference in petrol / Diesel fuel irrespective of price Petrol Cars and Diesel cars should be compared side by side with factors such as

(1) power delivery / Pickup (0-60 or 0-100)

(2) mileage (City & Highway)

(3) maintenance cost

(4) cost of ownership etc....

While driving diesel I feel very strong pull after while revving above 2000 rpm and shifting from 2nd to 3rd gear, the same feeling is somehow missing in petrol cars.

Even while driving on climbs diesel cars feel more comfortable and climb with ease while petrol car need some more efforts.

But Diesel cars need special care while maintaining as compared to petrol. Even if you don't service petrol car for some time and keep driving it, it won't trouble you but this is not the same in case of diesel. Diesel car need to be serviced and checked regularly and there are certain standard parts such as clutch plate / timing belt / etc... tend to worn out which need to be taken care of.

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According to today's Times, the oil companies now earn a profit of 35 ps per liter of diesel sold.

Finally deregulated huh!!

Was expecting a price cut announcement on their fortnightly cycle.. nevertheless.. it may happen soon.

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It isn't de-regulated yet but i can happen anytime soon.

Read somewhere today that Diesel is going to be 35paise cheaper/litre while Petrol to become expensive by 55paise/litre.

Let's see what happens in future.

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Interesting topic !! Yes it is not like few years back with huge difference between petrol and diesel today and it has got narrowed down.

In my opinion it all depends on the usage, price difference of both the variants, FE, and finally the personal choice as few like the silent petrol revving and others like the turbo kick with the new age diesel engines. So it wont change the scenario drastically though the difference becoming very close. For me I really enjoy the kick in the present diesel engines and go for it

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