Petrol v/s Diesel Cars Sales – 2019

2019 was a historic year of sorts for the automotive industry in India. It not only saw one of the worst YoY declines; but the shift towards Petrol models deepened too. There have been 2 primary reasons for the shift towards petrol vehicles –

  1. The price gap between Petrol & Diesel fuel price gap is just Rs.7.71/l as of today (considering Petrol price of Rs.70.04/l and Diesel price of Rs.62.33/l – Delhi)
  2. BS-6 transition has made a lot of OEMs (say Maruti, Renault, etc) to move to Petrol only models as they do not have the infrastructure/technology/investment readiness to manufacture diesel engines.

Near to 67% of the cars sold in 2019 had a petrol heart (engine). The dominance of the Petrol Models is bound to go to the next level in 2020 as the entire portfolio of country’s biggest automaker (Maruti Suzuki) shall have petrol-only models. However; companies like Hyundai, Ford, Kia, MG, etc are going aggressive on diesel models to gain from the situation. Will Maruti’s decision to exit diesel models be a wise one? We’ll have to wait and watch for that.



  • Maruti sold over 3.3 Lakh diesel vehicles in 2019 and the diesel models contributed over 22% of Maruti Suzuki’s volumes in the previous calendar year! Nation’s Biggest Car maker also did not have a presence in the EV domain – However; news are floating around that Maruti is readying Wagon-R EV for launch in 2020 at a competitive price point.
  • EV’s contributed to only 0.1% of the overall passenger vehicle sales in India. Going by the trend, there is a long way to go before Electric Vehicles catches up the fossil fuel counterparts. Lost cost EV and Electric Infrastructure are the need of the hour and shall be strongly backed by the government as well.
  • Hyundai managed to sneak in 27.3% sales from Diesel models and is expecting to increase the share in 2020 as Maruti is out of the race. Also the futuristic Kona was able to contribute only 0.1% of Hyundai’s sales in 2019.
  • Mahindra emerged to be the biggest EV manufacturer of 2019! Majority of the volumes was pushed by e-Verito and the EVs contributed to 0.4% of Mahindra’s volumes. Mahindra always had the first-mover advantage in the EV space post acquisition of Reva. However; the volumes are still not considerable and should go even higher.
  • Kia was the first OEM to bring in BS6 diesel in the Indian sub-continent and it reaped the benefits of its early entry into the space. Over 45% of Seltos’s sold in 2019 borne a diesel heart.
  • Dependency on petrol-powered models was extremely high for Renault, Honda & Maruti. Also Mahindra, Toyota & Skoda were highly dependent on Diesel-powered models.




Rank of OEMs wrt Petrol Models contribution –

Rank of OEMs wrt Diesel Models contribution –

Petrol v/s Diesel Cars Sales Data

First of all; we wish our readers a very Merry Christmas! While we have been very active in sharing monthly 4-wheeler & 2-wheeler sales data; a lot of our readers have been asking for the fuel-wise split to get a better understanding of how the sales fare for the respective fuel options. As data is not regularly available; we have been inconsistent in sharing the same. However; the latest iteration of our report analyses the fuel split for the cars sold from April 2019 to October 2019. The 7 months time frame considered shall give us a clear perspective of the sales fuel wise and the OEM-wise data is as shown below.


  • Petrol models contribute the king’s share in the sales and over 67% of the cars sold in India were gasoline powered. Almost 33% of the cars sold were powered by diesel engines and only Alternate fuel cars (Hybrid/Electric) contributed a mere 0.1%!
  • India’s biggest carmaker Maruti had 78.1% of petrol-engine cars sold and 21.9% of cars sold were diesel. Maruti raised a lot of eyebrows when it announced that it is going to sell only petrol powered cars from April 2020 – However; it is reconsidering the strategy as it cannot put the 21.9% sales at stake which it is still getting. Blockbuster models like Brezza are still diesel-only models and losing out on diesel can erode its Market Share pretty heavily.
  • Hyundai’s dependency on diesel cars was higher than Maruti and 27.6% of cars from Hyundai’s stable was diesel-powered. Hyundai has anyhow announced that it is going to bring BS6 diesel engines from next year and is not shying away from the powertrain. Hyundai also made the move to explore the electric cars market with Kona and is selling just 45 units/mth. But; Kona shall give Hyundai a first-mover advantage and shall also enhance Hyundai’s brand image for selling a full fledged electric car.
  • Mahindra’s dependency on diesel is magnanimous. ~93% of Mahindra’s were diesel cars! No wonder M&M bought 50% of Ford India’s stake that shall give it the required technology on petrol cars and expand its lineup accordingly too.  M&M has been betting big on electric cars and the Reva takeover gave it the competitive edge as well. 42% of electric cars sold in India were a Mahindra and signs of getting Electric-KUV & Ford models shall help it leverage on the same.
  • More than 51% of Seltos sold in India were powered by Petrol Engines. Having GT line in petrol has helped Kia gain higher sales in Petrol portfolio.
  • More than 10% of Hector sold was powered by the Hybrid powertrain! Also almost 42% of Hector’s were powered by a petrol engine. It clearly shows why Harrier lost out on sales even though it has been such a capable product (Harrier doesn’t have either Petrol or Hybrid powertrain on offer).
  • Surprisingly Renault was the OEM which was dependent on Petrol models the highest! As Duster’s sales have dwindled; and majority of the volumes are inclined from Kwid & Triber (which are petrol only models) – the inclination on petrol portfolio is at all time high.