Maruti Suzuki to buy diesel engines from Fiat image

India’s Maruti Suzuki will source Fiat diesel engines from the Italian carmaker’s local unit starting in January, Maruti chairman announced. The move will help reduce the long waiting period on some of Maruti’s best-selling models.

“We’ll gradually get about 100,000 engines a year from Fiat,” Maruti chairman R.C. Bhargava was quoted as saying by Wall Street Journal. Currently Maruti buys all its diesel engines from Suzuki Powertrain India, a joint venture between Maruti and its parent company Suzuki Motor Corporation.

Suzuki Powertrain will make 300,000 diesel engines this financial year through March 2012, up from 240,000 last year. The engines are made using Fiat technology. Maruti Suzuki needs even more diesel engines and plans to get them from Fiat India Automobiles. A spokesman for the company declined to comment on selling engines to Maruti, but said Fiat India „is willing to supply diesel engines to anyone who wants to buy.”

Diesel vehicles are in high demand in India, while gasoline-powered cars are slowing due to sluggish economic growth in the country. Buying engines from Fiat will help Maruti meet rising demand for its diesel-powered vehicles. Gasoline prices continue to rise sharply in India, while diesel prices are kept under check by the government. Gasoline costs 66.42 rupees ($1.27) per liter in New Delhi, with diesel priced at 40.91 rupees ($0.78) per liter.