The country's largest car-maker, Maruti Suzuki India, on Friday launched five of its models in CNG versions, including the best-selling Alto.
The other four models introduced with the alternative fuel option are compact cars Estilo and WagonR, multi-purpose vehicle Eeco and mid-sized sedan SX4.
The CNG variants of these five models are priced between Rs 3.23 lakh and Rs 7.47 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi)
The move comes at a time when the company's market share has slipped below 50 per cent this fiscal. It has undertaken many steps, including launching a 1,000-cc version of the Alto and an automatic transmission variant of its A-Star hatchback, to regain the lost market share.
"The development is significant on multiple counts. This is the first instance when a car manufacturer has developed and launched factory-fitted, technologically superior CNG engines in India," Maruti Suzuki India (MSI) Managing Director and CEO Shinzo Nakanishi told reporters here.
"The company's big ticket entry into the CNG fuel segment augurs well for the environment," Nakanishi added.
MSI launched the CNG variant of the country's best-selling car, Alto, at Rs 3.23 lakh.
The CNG version of the Estilo will come for Rs 4.05 lakh, while the WagonR variant will be offered for Rs 4.11 lakh. The CNG version of the Eeco is priced at Rs 3.64 lakh, while the SX4 variant will cost Rs 7.47 lakh.
According to the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers, MSI sold 2,82,488 cars during the April-July period, translating into a 47.68 per cent share in the overall 5,92,405 units market. In the year-ago period, MSI had a 53.13 per cent share of the 4,40,069 units car market, with sales of 2,33,811 units.
Last week, Nakanishi had said with the launch of these five new CNG cars, the company expects to increase its market share to over 50 per cent again.