The arrival of BS6 emission norms has killed a lot of fantastic small capacity diesel-powered cars from Maruti Suzuki, Renault, Volkswagen, Skoda, Toyota and Nissan. Add to it, the departure of locally-made cars Ford cars from the Indian car market means that there are very few compact cars with small capacity diesel engines available in India.
This huge change in the dynamics of the diesel-powered small car segment has completely changed the list of ten most fuel-efficient diesel-powered cars in India, which is now as follows:
The number one position in this list of most fuel-efficient diesel cars in India is now held by the Hyundai Aura. The sub-four metre compact sedan was brought in as a replacement to the Hyundai Xcent and is a decent seller for Hyundai to date.
The Hyundai Aura is powered by a 1.2-litre three-cylinder diesel engine, which produces 75 PS of power and 190 Nm of torque. This engine gives 25.4 kmpl with the 5-speed AMT and 25.35 kmpl with the 5-speed manual gearbox it has on offer.
A list that was dominated by Maruti Suzuki is now seeing leadership from Hyundai, for the next car in this list is the new Hyundai i20. The third-generation Hyundai i20 ditched the old 1.4-litre oil burner for a new 1.5-litre diesel engine, which it shares with the Hyundai Venue.
With a maximum power output of 100 PS and a maximum torque of 240 Nm, the diesel-powered Hyundai i20 offers a fuel economy of 25.2 kmpl. This version of the i20 is available only with a 6-speed manual gearbox.
Another mass-market carmaker that stuck to its diesel plans in the BS6 era is Tata, and the Altroz happens to be its most affordable and efficient diesel car on sale. The Tata Altroz has already won many accolades for its design and Global NCAP 5-star rating, and the next jewel in its crown is its exceptional fuel economy.
The 1.5-litre four-cylinder diesel engine of the Tata Altroz returns an ARAI-rated economy of 25.11 kmpl. Available with a 5-speed manual gearbox, this engine pumps out 90 PS of power and 200 Nm of torque.
Hyundai Grand i10 Nios
The hatchback derivative of the Hyundai Aura, the Grand i10 Nios might be smaller and lighter than the former but is surprisingly less efficient.
The Hyundai Grand i10 Nios gets the same 1.2-litre three-cylinder diesel engine as the Aura, and here too, this engine breathes out 75 PS of power and 190 Nm of torque. However, the Grand i10 Nios returns a slightly lesser fuel efficiency of 25.1 kmpl with its 5-speed manual gearbox. The Nios is also offered with a 5-speed AMT for its diesel variants, the ARAI-claimed efficiency of which is unknown.
ALSO READ: 10 Most Fuel Efficient Petrol Cars in India
The Hyundai Verna received a facelift just before the BS6 emission norms kicked in, and with this, arrived a new 1.5-litre four-cylinder diesel engine under its hood.
With maximum power and torque outputs of 115 PS and 250 Nm, this new engine might not be as powerful as the previously available 1.6-litre diesel. However, where the Verna has seen a massive improvement is the fuel efficiency. With this engine, the Hyundai Verna returns 25 kmpl with the 6-speed manual gearbox and 21 kmpl with the 6-speed automatic gearbox.
ALSO READ: Top 10 Low Price Cars With Sunroof in India
Following Hyundai and Tata, Honda is the third carmaker in the mass market segments to offer a small-capacity diesel engine for its cars. The most fuel-efficient diesel-powered Honda car on sale right now is the Honda Amaze, which ranks 6th in the list of most fuel-efficient diesel cars in India.
The Honda Amaze gets a 1.5-litre diesel engine under its hood, which gives 24.7 kmpl with the 5-speed manual gearbox and 21 kmpl with the CVT gearbox. Interestingly, while the engine paired with the manual gearbox makes 100 PS of power and 200 Nm of torque, the one paired to the CVT delivers lesser power and torque outputs at 80 PS and 160 Nm respectively.
Coming up next in this list is Honda’s latest offering in India, the all-new fifth-generation City. Post the discontinuation of Civic and CR-V in the Indian car market, the Honda City is now the flagship product from the carmaker. In this latest iteration, the Honda City might have received massive changes in and out, however, under the hood, it continues to be more or less the same as before.
The 1.5-litre diesel engine of the Honda City, which still makes 100 PS of power and 200 Nm of torque, promises to deliver 24.1 kmpl. This version of the City is available only with a 6-speed manual gearbox.
The Kia Sonet has created a lot of ripples in the Sub-four metre compact and has given its competition some sleepless nights with its high demand among Indian car buyers. This smallest offering from Kia in India is available with a wide range of powertrain options, including both manual and automatic variants of diesel.
The 1.5-litre diesel engine of the Kia Sonet returns 24.1 kmpl with the 6-speed manual gearbox and 19 kmpl with the 6-speed automatic gearbox. This engine has been tuned differently with both gearbox options – while it makes 100 PS of power and 240 Nm of torque with the manual gearbox, the automatic variant is more powerful with 115 PS of power and 250 Nm of torque on tap.
The Honda WR-V might not have been as successful as its competitors in the sub-four metre compact SUV/crossover segment. However, this jazzier version of the Honda Jazz gets substantial revisions to its styling on the outside and an added versatility of an optional diesel engine.
The oil burner is the same 1.5-litre diesel engine which is there in the City and Amaze as well. Available with only a 6-speed manual gearbox, this engine in the WR-V makes 100 PS of power and 200 Nm of torque, and ensures a fuel economy of 23.7 kmpl.
Ending up the list is the distant cousin of the Kia Sonet, the Hyundai Venue. The Venue shares its platform and the hugely versatile list of powertrain options with the Sonet. This list includes the 1.5-litre four-cylinder diesel engine as well.
While the engine in the Venue puts up the same numbers – 100 PS of power and 240 Nm of torque, it delivers a slightly lesser fuel economy of 23.3 kmpl. However, unlike the Sonet, the diesel-powered Hyundai Venue misses out on the 6-speed automatic gearbox and is offered solely with a 6-speed manual gearbox.
ALSO READ: Top 10 Low Maintenance Cars in India