The Supreme Court had temporarily banned the sale of large diesel cars in New Delhi in December. Car manufacturers like Mercedes-Benz, Mahindra and Toyota argued that their models were environment friendly as they adhered to emission norms. However, the Supreme Court decided that the ban will continue.
Vehicles with diesel engines with over 2000cc have been banned since 16 December, 2015. Mercedes-Benz are hit the hardest with 10 vehicles in their range being affected by the ban, from the A-Class to the S-Class diesel models. Mahindra has lost sales on their Scorpio, Bolero and XUV500 models. Toyota has lost out on their popular Innova and Fortuner models.
During the hearing, the car manufacturers argued that their cars don't pollute much. At this, Chief Justice of India, TS Thakur responded saying, "Do your cars emit oxygen?" The Court agreed to hear the plea of automobile manufacturers looking to lift the ban upon production of evidence that their cars pollute less or equal to the petrol cars. The Supreme Court has banned the entry of trucks from NH2, NH10, NH58 as well as SH57. At the same time, the Supreme Court allowed the entry of commercial vehicles which are Delhi bound only on the payment of pollution charge.
The firm stay on the ban will prove difficult for the car manufacturers means they will have to look for alternatives. There were rumours of Mahindra downsizing engines in the Scorpio and XUV500. Furthermore, there were talks of Toyota bringing back the petrol Innova.