Up until and after the Dieselgate scandal that broke in 2015, diesel carried a reputation of being a 'dirty' fuel and has been thought to be primarily used for commercial transportation, rather than personal. However, the modern diesel engine delivers a proposition that is hard to resist – namely fuel efficiency and low carbon dioxide emissions (nitrous oxides and sulphates still require quite a bit of reduction though!); along with low-end torque, making driving more effortless. Some of the newer diesels also have a fun-to-drive aspect. These engines are more capable of withstanding the rigors of high compression and ensuring the longevity of the motor. They also require less maintenance, while maintaining a higher resale value.
Fuel efficiency is still one of the foremost factors that drives the Indian consumer, when it comes to buying a car. Hence, here’s our list of the 10 most fuel efficient diesel cars currently on sale in India.
Though the figures quoted ahead are ARAI certified, they do not reflect real-world efficiency figures as those tests are conducted in the lab under ideal conditions.
1. Maruti Dzire (Diesel) – 28.4kpl
The fastest-selling vehicle in India is also the most fuel-efficient vehicle on sale, today. Thanks to its 78hp, 1.3-litre, DDiS diesel engine mated to a lightweight body, the Dzire can go an impressive 28.4km on one litre of diesel. The Dzire is a class leader for various reasons, such as its styling and build quality, roomy cabin and equipment list – in addition to Maruti’s excellent after-sales network. Priced from Rs 7.24 lakh (on-road, Delhi), it is no wonder it won our six-car compact sedan comparison.
Maruti announces service campaign for new Dzire
2017 Maruti Dzire long term review, first report
2017 Maruti Suzuki Dzire review, test drive
2. Maruti Ciaz (SHVS) – 28.09 kpl
The Ciaz has been an extremely strong seller in the compact sedan segment, holding up well against the segment pioneer, the Honda City. A lot of the Ciaz’s positives include its plush cabin, peppy performance and the extremely fuel-efficient mild hybrid SHVS diesel engine producing 89hp and delivering a compelling 28.09kpl. It is priced at Rs 9.09 lakh (on-road, Delhi)
Maruti Ciaz long term review, final report
2015 Maruti Ciaz SHVS diesel hybrid review, test drive
3. Maruti Baleno – 27.39kpl
Maruti’s first premium hatchback, the Baleno, has been yet another class leader in its segment, when pitted against the Hyundai i20 and Honda Jazz. The Baleno is a well-rounded vehicle and offers customers an array of equipment, premium styling as well as superb fuel efficiency. It is priced at Rs 7.47 lakh (on-road, Delhi)
2015 Maruti Baleno long term review, final report
2015 Maruti Baleno review, road test
4. Honda Jazz – 27.3kpl
The Honda Jazz blends clever interior packaging, legendary Honda reliability and a frugal fuel economy that has made it the car to look out for in the severely contested premium hatchback segment. The 1.5-litre diesel engine is powerful enough for the Jazz and as a bonus, also ensures it foots low fuel bills. The on-road price, Delhi is Rs 8.19 lakh.
2015 Honda Jazz review, road test
Honda India sees future for diesels beyond 2020
5. Tata Tiago – 27.28kpl
Tata recently rolled out the 1 lakh Tiago from its factory, in Gujarat. With a spacious, well-appointed cabin, aggressive price tag, European styling and an impressive ARAI fuel efficiency rating of 27.28kpl, the Tiago offers great value-for-money motoring. The on-road, Delhi price is Rs 4.46 lakh.
2017 Tata Tiago long term review, final report
Tata Tiago review, test drive
6. Maruti Ignis – 26.8kpl
The Ignis is a quirky little crossover, which is refreshingly different with its plethora of customization options and 'tall boy' design that harks back to Suzukis of yore. It unsurprisingly features an extremely fuel-efficient engine. Powered by the same 1.3-litre diesel engine that features in many other Marutis, the Ignis continues to be a potent combination of premium features, comfort and fuel frugality. Its on-road price, Delhi is Rs 7.40 lakh.
2017 Maruti Ignis long term review, first report
Maruti Ignis vs Grand i10 vs KUV 100 diesel comparison
2017 Maruti Ignis Alpha AMT launched at Rs 7.01 lakh
7. Ford Figo (Diesel) – 25.83kpl
The successor to the previous-gen Figo, this refreshed Figo from Ford has been a sales success, thanks to its long feature list, safety kit packaging and the 1.5-litre diesel engine under its boot that delivers 25.83kpl – which means the Figo ensures low fuel bills and is extremely frugal. On-road Delhi prices for this car start at Rs 6.39 lakh.
Ford Figo facelift spied in India
Ford Figo review, road test
8. Ford Figo Aspire (Diesel) – 25.83kpl
The compact sedan sibling of the Figo, the Aspire gets everything right, much like its hatchback sibling; including the big fuel efficiency number and the addition of a boot – both have increased its practicality. The on-road, Delhi prices for the car start at Rs 7.60 lakh.
Ford Aspire facelift spied
2017 Ford Figo Aspire long term review, first report
9. Honda Amaze (Diesel) – 25.8kpl
While it hasn’t been a great sales success, Honda’s compact sedan has won much acclaim for its spacious cabin and punchy 1.5-litre i-DTEC Earth Dreams diesel engine which delivers great fuel efficiency, for its class. It has recently received a facelift – Honda armed it with sharper looks and better features, making the Amaze an even greater value proposition. Prices for the Amaze on-road, Delhi start at Rs 7.54 lakh.
Next-gen Honda Amaze to be plusher and more spacious
Honda Amaze facelift review, test drive
Honda Amaze diesel long term review second report
10. Honda City (Diesel) – 25.6kpl
The compact executive sedan segment leader now features an aluminum, 1.5-litre, i-DTEC diesel engine that is hugely fuel-efficient and offers a good low and mid-end performance. It’s a great car, both to drive as well as be driven around in. Honda refreshed its iconic vehicle, earlier this year, with more features and an all-new top-end variant. Price of the Honda City on-road, Delhi is Rs 12.71 lakh.
Honda to launch six all-new models in next three years
2014 Honda City long term review first review
Take a look at our most fuel efficient petrol cars list here.