TVS Motor Company, the country’s fourth largest two-wheeler maker, is expected to be ready with Bharat Stage-VI compliant engines by April 2019, a year ahead of the deadline, sources close to the development told CNBC-TV18.
The Chennai-based company has been prioritizing implementation of BS-VI norms and is expected to complete the testing of all BS-VI compliant models by October, said the above mentioned sources on condition of anonymity.
“It is a lot of hard work. Conversion is easy but the scale of it given the limited time frame is making the entire process a tedious one. Testing is ongoing,” said one of the sources.
The two-wheeler maker is likely to complete the production of its first batch of its BS-VI compliant vehicles by January, post which the batch will be sent to selected customers for one-month testing.
“Once the feedback is complete, more batches will be rolled out,” another source added.
TVS Motor declined to comment on the story ahead of its quarterly earnings on Tuesday.
Come April 2020, India will upgrade to
BS-VI from BS-IV emission standard. The Supreme Court has said the last date for the registration of BS-IV-complaint vehicles is March 31, 2020.
Oil companies have already been selling BS-VI fuel in Delhi since April last year.
“The larger worry is to be ready on-time and not before time as companies do not want an inventory of vehicles compliant with BS-IV norms. More importantly, industry does not want a repeat of March 2017 situation,” an industry expert said.
In March 2017, after the Supreme Court refused to extend the April 1 deadline of BS-IV implementation, automobile makers were sitting on inventory of over 800,000 units, with two-wheeler space being the worst hit. The companies had to participate in heavy discounting to clear a considerable portion of their inventory.
BS-VI compliant engines are expected to be more fuel-efficient and less polluting than its predecessors. However, they will also lead to an increase in costs, which will trickle down to the customers.
Citing cost concerns, TVS Motor’s Chairman Venu Srinivasan recently urged the government to reduce GST rate on two-wheelers.
“…More so with new safety norms and BSVI integration also around the corner, both of which will increase two-wheeler prices. It has become even more imperative to relook at the GST rates for two-wheelers to ensure social inclusion that is sustainable in the longer run,” Srinivasan had said.
In October-December period, TVS Motor sold 799,000 units of two-wheelers, 19 percent higher on year.
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