The future of automobiles is definitely electric but right now we are at such a stage in terms of technology where we just can not go all electric, in order to adapt gradually into electrification, manufacturers offer plug-in hybrid models of their regular cars. A plug-in hybrid is a part electric car in which an electric motor assists the engine to push the car forward, some smart hybrid system also use technologies like regenerative braking to charge the batteries with the motion of the car, conserving energy and keeping the environment clean. Maruti Suzuki, India’s largest car manufacturer recently announced it plans to bring such hybrid variants of their popular S-Cross and Vitara Brezza models.
The company has collaborated with Toyota with an aim to offer all-electric cars in the Indian market as early as 2020, however, Dale Wyatt, Suzuki’s UK Managing Director also confirmed that the next generation of the S-Cross and Vitara Brezza will be offered with a hybrid powertrain in both Indian and international markets. Other popular models of the manufacturer like the Swift and Celerio hatchbacks may miss out on a hybrid powertrain but as reports suggest, Maruti has started testing all-electric vehicles on the Indian soil which may indicate that smaller hatchbacks may get an all-electric drivetrain instead of hybrid technology.
Meanwhile, the S-Cross and Vitara will get three drivetrain variants in the next generation, one would use the conventional IC engine, one would be a mild hybrid system which will get a 48 Volt battery and one plug-in hybrid with an additional battery pack and electric assist. We expect Maruti to offer them with the new 1.5-litre petrol engine, which is seen on the Ciaz and while the international variants will not get a diesel engine option, Maruti may provide the Indian market with the new 1..5-litre unit which is currently under development. Maruti Suzuki has plans to sell about 15 lakh electric cars a year in India by 2030, till then hybrid cars would make much more sense, considering our country still lacks the infrastructure to support all-electric cars.