Fiat to supply diesel engines to Maruti
E-mail

Fiat and Suzuki Motor Corporation have reached an agreement for the supply of Fiat’s 1.3L MultiJet 75hp BS-IV Small Diesel Engine produced under license by Fiat India Automobiles Limited (FIAL), the joint venture between Fiat and Tata Motors, to Suzuki’s affiliate company Maruti Suzuki India Limited (MSIL).

FIAL will supply up to 100,000 1.3L MultiJet 75hp SDE engines per year to MSIL starting
from January 2012 for a period of three years.

The production of the 1.3L MultiJet 75hp engine for MSIL will start in the fourth week of
January at FIAL’s Ranjangaon plant near Pune in Maharashtra State.



These volumes will be in addition to the 1.3L MultiJet SDE engines already licensed by

Fiat and manufactured by Suzuki Powertrain India Limited.

This Fiat’s Multijet 75 bhp motor can truly be called India’s national diesel engine as it powers as many as many as five cars viz. Fiat Punto, Maruti Swift, Maruti Swift Dzire, Maruti Ritz, Tata Vista. The same engine in a slightly reduced capacity with a cylinder chopped off powers the Chevrolet Beat Diesel and in a more powerful avatar with a bigger sequential turbo generates 90 bhp and in that mode powers the Fiat Linea, Tata Manza and now the Maruti SX4 Diesel.

The diesel hot hatch segment has been experiencing a three way fight for the market share between the Maruti Swift, Tata Vista and the Fiat Punto. The market share also seems to be divided quite in the same order.

This is in spite of the fact that MSIL has been struggling with a very long waiting periods for the diesel variants of the Swift and the Swift Dzire with the petrol variants virtually available off the shelf.

What this agreement will do is bring that waiting time for the Swift and Dzire diesel down by a significant amount. Also, with the launch of the sub-4 meter Dzire round the corner, the already fantastic price point of the Dzire will get even better. So we see Maruti virtually dominating the hot hatch and  entry level diesel sedan segment in the years to come.

It has been quite sad that the Multijet engine which has been powering Fiat’s competitors really well has not been able to propel the sales of its very able offerings, the Punto and the Linea to that extent. Their JV with Tata Motors is also not sailing over the smoothest waters. This agreement will provide the company with the much required financial boost, sadly, a lot will be at the cost of strengthening the competition.

Hence, we see this agreement between FIAL and MSIL as a very very significant one.

We now hope that this provides the required financial impetus to FIAL to consolidate its own position in the Indian car market with a better market share.