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Petrol prices hiked by Rs 3.38/litre, diesel up by Rs 2.67/litre

NEW DELHI: Petrol price was hiked on Wednesday by a steep Rs 3.38 per litre and diesel by Rs 2.67 a litre, reversing a two-month declining trend.

Petrol will cost Rs 63.47 a litre in Delhi from midnight tonight, up from Rs 60.09 a litre, said Indian Oil Corp, the nation's largest fuel retailer.

Similarly, a litre of diesel will cost Rs 52.94 a litre as against Rs 50.27.

The hike in fuel price, necessitated by a 13 per cent rise in international oil rates in the last fortnight, comes on the back of four reductions.

Rates were last cut by Rs 1 per litre in case of petrol and Rs 2 in diesel on August 16. The four reductions in last two months had led to the price of petrol in Delhi coming down by Rs 5.56 a litre and Rs 4.92 per litre in case of diesel.

"During the current fortnight, crude oil prices in the international market have witnessed a steep increase by 13 per cent (over USD 5 per barrel) compared to previous fortnight, with a corresponding increase in the international prices of petroleum products.

"The current level of international prices warrant an increase in prices of petrol and diesel, the impact of which is being passed on to the consumers," IOC said in a statement.

IOC and other state-owned fuel retailers, Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL) and Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd (BPCL) revise petrol and diesel price on 1st and 16th of every month based on international oil rate and foreign exchange ratio in the preceding fortnight.

"The movement of prices in the international oil market and Rupee-US Dollar exchange rate shall continue to be monitored closely and developing trends of the market will be reflected in future price changes," IOC added.

Source: Petrol prices hiked by Rs 3.38/litre, diesel up by Rs 2.67/litre

Aug 31, 2016
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Maruti sales rise 12.2% in August

NEW DELHI: Country's largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki India BSE -1.43 %</a> (MSI) today posted a 12.2 per cent rise in total sales in August at 1,32,211 units as against 1,17,864 units in the same month a year ago.

The company's domestic sales for the month stood at 1,19,931 units, up 12.3 per cent from 1,06,781 units in August 2015. 

Sales of mini segment cars, including, Alto and WagonR, however, declined by 5.8 per cent to 35,490 units as compared to 37,665 units in the year-ago month, MSI said in a statement. 

The company said sales of the compact segment comprising Swift, Estilo, Ritz, Dzire and Baleno increased by 9.9 per cent to 45,579 units in August this year as against 41,461 units in the year-ago month. 

MSI said sales of its compact sedan Dzire Tour declined by 5.9 per cent during the month under review at 2,986 units as against 3,172 units in August 2015. 

Sales of mid sized sedan Ciaz rose 49.5 per cent to 6,214 units during the month. 

Sales of utility vehicles, including Gypsy, Grand Vitara, Ertiga, S-Cross and recently launched compact SUV Vitara Brezza surged over two-fold to 16,806 units in August this year from 7,836 units in the corresponding month last year.

Sales of vans – Omni and Eeco -- rose 2.7 per cent to 12,831 units in August this year as compared to 12,491 units in the same month of the previous year. 

Exports during the month rose 10.8 per cent to 12,280 units as compared to 11,083 units in August last year, MSI said.    

The company also sold 25 units of its light commercial vehicle Super Carry during the month. 

Source: Maruti sales rise 12.2% in August 

Aug 31, 2016
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After bringing in luxury SUVs, Jeep plans locally-made vehicles in price band of Rs 10-20 lakh

NEW DELHI: Jeep, the iconic US automobile brand that on Tuesday entered India officially with SUVs costing upwards of Rs 70 lakh, has plans to locally make vehicles that are being developed with the Indian buyer in mind. With the price tag expected to be as low as Rs 10 lakh, these models in the works will be pitched against the likes of Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, Hyundai Creta and Ford EcoSport.   

Italian-American automaker Fiat Chrysler's plan is to build the Jeep brand in India initially with luxury vehicles such as the Wrangler and Grand Cherokee, and then roll out the locally made models. The Delhi showroom price of the Wrangler it launched on Tuesday is Rs 71.59 lakh. The Grand Cherokee costs Rs 93 lakh to Rs 1.14 crore. Both are imported as completely built units. 

According to five people in the know of the company's plans, a C-segment Jeep, which is internally codenamed 556, is expected to be launched around August next year and exported to several right-hand drive markets as well from India. 

It is likely to be benchmarked against the BMW X1 and priced at Rs 15-20 lakh. Then, there will be a more ambitious B-segment Jeep SUV internally codenamed 526, stretching less than four meters and costing upwards of Rs 10 lakh, giving direct competition to the Vitara Brezza and EcoSport. 

The company confirmed the plan to produce the C Jeep from 2017, but didn't comment on products beyond that. Kevin Flynn, managing director of Fiat Chrysler India, declined to comment on specific price points for localised Jeep, but said: "The locally made Jeep will be attainable for a significant part of the market." 

On the potential of exporting vehicles from India, Flynn said: "We are optimistic and believe that India still wants to leverage its strengths and stands behind its Make in India programme and being a much sought after manufacturing location.

"  $280 million investment so far 

The company has already brought in two vehicle line directors from Italy and the localised project is taking concrete shape. The first few hundred units of the C Jeep will be made by the end of the year and Fiat will test those before rolling it out of the manufacturing line in Ranjangaon on the outskirts of Pune from the second half of 2017. 

The company has so far invested $280 million (Rs 1,880 crore) in the new factory to produce the premium Jeep models. The vehicles will be sold through 10 outlets. 

Fiat Chrysler is likely to position the B-segment Jeep at a little premium over existing sub-4 metre SUVs such as the EcoSport and Vitara Brezza and below the likes of Creta and Mahindra Scorpio. The vehicle will be packaged with loads of features.

"The smaller B Jeep is a mini-Renegade SUV and it is created largely for markets like India. The company is planning on annual volumes of about 40,000 to 50,000 units, with some portfolio going to exports market," said a person involved with the company, speaking on the condition of anonymity. 

Gaurav Vangaal, senior analyst for forecasting at IHS Automotive, said after the India-made Ford EcoSport's success in the developed world, Jeep's plans of exporting premium vehicle from India is another feather in the cap of the country as a manufacturing base. 

"The quality of vehicles made in India is second to none and it is being duly rewarded by global carmakers, who are bringing in compact premium vehicles, especially SUVs. The plan not only enables them to tap the large Indian market, but by combining exports volumes, it allows companies to enjoy economies of scale and pass on the benefit through attractive pricing," he said. 

Source: After bringing in luxury SUVs, Jeep plans locally-made vehicles in price band of Rs 10-20 lakh 

Aug 31, 2016
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Mahindra & Mahindra to continue selling 1.99 ltr engine SUVs in Delhi/NCR

NEW DELHI: Home grown auto major Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) will continue selling XUV500 and Scorpio  with 1.99 litre engine in Delhi/NCR till the "dust settles" after the Supreme Court order lifting the ban on 2,000 cc and above diesel vehicles earlier this month.  

Hit by the Supreme Court ban in December, the Mumbai-based automaker had launched a 1.99 litre version of its mHawk engine series earlier this year.  

The apex court however lifted the ban earlier this month, though with one per cent environment cess.  

"For the time being we are continuing with 1.99 litre engine for two reasons. First there is no compromise that the customer has for the 1.99 litre engine therefore there is no reason for us to change to 2.2 litre engine," M&M Executive Director Pawan Goenka told reporters here. 

"Second, we don't know what the final judgement would be (SC on 2,000 cc and above diesel vehicles). Right now it is an interim judgement. So we don't want to go back to 2.2 litre and then when some judgement comes again move to 1.99 litre engine," he said. 

He was talking to mediapersons on the sidelines of 56th Annual Session of the Automotive Component Manufacturers Association (ACMA).

If need be, the company could move to 2.2 litre engine overnight, Goenka said. 

"Till the dust settles, we can make a decision if we want to continue with the 1.99 litre engine or go back back to 2.2 litre one," Goenka said. 

On whether the one per cent environment cess imposed by the Supreme Court will have any impact, Goenka said: "This is one subject where the industry is fully aligned. Industry is unanimous that there is no justification to single out diesel for pollution problem in Delhi."  

"By imposing any kind of cess you are in a sense saying that even if you are meeting the regulations you still need to pay a penalty," he added.  

One per cent cess is not going to make any difference either way as it will not deter the customers from buying a vehicle nor it will help take on pollution in a big way, he said. 

"This is a sort of interim decision the apex court has taken and industry has agreed because it is better have one per cent cess than not to be able to sell products. So we had no option but to accept this suggestion and move on with it," Goenka said.  

When asked if the company would like this cess to be abolished going ahead, Goenka said: "Off course yes.

" M&M is also looking to reworking strategies for its two- wheeler business as it has not been able to achieve desired success in the vertical so far.  

"Two-wheeler has not given us what we expected it to deliver but we are still working on it, we have not given up on two-wheeler segment by any stretch of imagination. The strategy with what we started has not delivered. We are working on a new strategy," Goenka said. 

Source: Mahindra & Mahindra to continue selling 1.99 ltr engine SUVs in Delhi/NCR

Aug 30, 2016
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Maruti launches Swift variant priced upto Rs 6.86 lakh

NEW DELHI: Maruti Suzuki BSE -1.55 %  India today launched a new limited edition variant of its premium hatchback Swift priced up to Rs 6.86 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi).

 The new variant -- Swift Deca, comes with touch screen multimedia system with bluetooth, exterior styling kit, sporty body graphics, football themed seat covers and interior styling kit.

The variant will come in two trims -- priced at Rs 5.94 lakh and Rs 6.86 lakh respectively. 

"Since its launch, Swift has been one of the best performers in our portfolio and helped us strengthen leadership in premium hatchback segment...Swift Deca carries forward the sportiness and performance quotient associated with the brand," R S Kalsi, Executive Director, Marketing &amp; Sales, Maruti Suzuki said. 

Source: Maruti launches Swift variant priced upto Rs 6.86 lakh

Aug 30, 2016
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