Following a similar announcement by Mercedes-Benz India, Audi will now add some more petrol power to its line of cars in India. Luxury car buyers primarily opt for diesel variants, and thanks to the anti-diesel regulations that came into play over the past year, brands like Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz lost out a large share of their projected sales.
To counter this, many carmakers are introducing petrol variants and as per a statement by Audi India chief Joe King, all of the brand’s models will be offered with petrol engines by Q1 2017.
The German automaker estimates that it stands to lose around Rs 760 crore in revenue this year due to the looming uncertainty over the government’s stand on diesel engines even after the ban in the capital was revoked. The loss has also been compounded by the 4 per cent cess levied on luxury cars and SUVs during the union budget, which has also hindered purchase decisions to some extent.
Audi India is set to launch the all-new A4 this year and it will be offered with a petrol engine. Models like the A3, A6, A8 are available with the option of a petrol motor, but the Q3, Q5 and Q7 SUVs are not. This has had a particularly bad impact on the Q7, which is one of Audi’s most popular models in India.
Evidently, the lack of petrol options is limited to Audi’s ‘Q’ range. This is largely because SUV buyers generally prefer diesel engines for their superior torque delivery and fuel-efficiency. While adding petrol engines to the range will give buyers the gift of choice, it will be interesting to see how this translates on the sales charts.