India’s Top 10 fuel efficient CNG cars in 2022

by Saptarshi Mondal, Autocar India 27 Aug 2022


Maruti Suzuki’s current order backlog of 126,000 CNG-powered cars is evidence of the popularity that CNG vehicles in India are currently enjoying. The CNG models itself make up for 33 percent of Maruti's nearly 400,000 pending orders.

While other OEMs like Tata Motors and Hyundai Motor India also offer CNG models, they do not offer as expansive a line-up of CNG models as does Maruti with seven models across the hatchback, sedan and MPV segments. Here, we take a deep dive into the Top 10 most fuel efficient CNG passenger vehicles in India, with ARAI-certified fuel efficiency figures.

1. Maruti Suzuki Celerio – 35.60km/kg
The Celerio CNG is currently the most fuel-efficient CNG vehicle in India. Powered by the same 1.0-litre K10C as the Wagon R, the Celerio CNG returns a marginally better fuel economy of 35.60km/kg. In CNG-spec, the Celerio produces 57hp and 82Nm of peak torque – identical to the Wagon R. Maruti Suzuki offers the Celerio CNG only on the mid-spec VXi trim priced at Rs 669,000. The Celerio is the most fuel-efficient hatchback in the country in both its CNG and petrol guise.

2. Maruti Suzuki Wagon R – 34.05km/kg
While the Wagon R is available with two engine options – the 1.0-litre K10C and the 1.2-litre K12C – it’s only the former that’s offered in CNG-spec. The engine produces 57hp and 82Nm in CNG-spec and has a claimed fuel economy of 34.05km/kg. Offered in two trims – LXi and VXi – the Wagon R CNG is priced between Rs 642,000 to Rs 686,000.

The Wagon R CNG comes with a 60-litre fuel tank, but unlike its petrol-counterpart, it does not get an idle start-stop system.

3. Maruti Suzuki Alto 800 – 31.59km/kg
Maruti Suzuki recently launched the third-gen Alto K10 in India, but the second-gen model continues to be on sale with the smaller 0.8-litre engine that’s offered in both petrol and CNG guise. The 796cc, three-cylinder engine produces 40hp and 60Nm of peak torque in CNG-spec and has an ARAI-claimed fuel economy of 31.59km/kg. This makes it the least powerful CNG powered vehicle in the country, but it is also the most affordable at Rs 503,000, and is available in a single LXi (O) trim.

The new Alto K10 with its 1.0-litre K10C engine will also be offered with a factory-fitted CNG kit in the near future, and could be even more efficient than the 0.8-litre version.

4. Maruti Suzuki Dzire CNG – 31.12km/kg
The Dzire CNG is powered by the same 1.2-litre K12C engine as the newly launched Swift CNG, and while power and torque figures are identical on both models, the Dzire CNG is marginally more efficient with an ARAI-claimed figure of 31.12km/kg. This is despite the additional weight over the Swift hatchback. The Dzire CNG rivals the likes of the Aura CNG (28.5 km/kg) and the Tigor CNG (26.49km/kg), and while it is both more efficient and more powerful, it is also the most expensive of the lot.

Similar to the Swift, the Dzire CNG is also available in the mid-spec VXi and ZXi trims and is priced between Rs 823,000-891,000.

5. Maruti Suzuki Swift CNG – 30.90km/kg
Launched earlier this month, the Swift is the newest model in Maruti Suzuki’s line-up to be offered with a factory-fitted CNG kit. It is powered by a 77hp, 98.5Nm, 1.2-litre, 4-cylinder engine in CNG-spec, and returns an ARAI-certified fuel efficiency of 30.90km/kg. That makes it more efficient than its rivals Hyundai Grand i10 Nios (28.5km/kg) and Tata Tiago (26.49km/kg). The Swift CNG is also the most powerful of the lot.

The Swift CNG is available in the mid-spec VXi and ZXi trims and is priced from Rs 777,000 to Rs 845,000, and is the only model in its class that can be availed on a subscription basis.

6. Hyundai Grand i10 Nios CNG – 28.5km/kg
With Hyundai officially pulling the plug on the Santro hatchback, the Grand i10 Nios is the brand’s only budget hatchback on sale today. With a CNG kit that’s offered on Magna and Sportz variants, the Grand i10 Nios starts from Rs 716,000 and goes up to Rs 769,000, making it the most expensive hatchback among rivals. The hatchback is powered by a 1.2-litre, four-cylinder engine that puts out 69hp and 95.2Nm in CNG mode, and 83hp with 113Nm in petrol-only mode.

But even with a 60-litre CNG tank onboard, the Grand i10 Nios offers a claimed mileage of 28.5km/kg, which is marginally better than the Tiago iCNG.

7. Hyundai Aura – 28.5km/kg
Similar to the Grand i10 Nios, the Aura has been on sale in India for more than two years now. During this period, Hyundai introduced the CNG version of the Aura which is offered in S and SX trims that cost Rs 787,000 and Rs 856,000, respectively. It is powered by the same 1.2-litre, four-cylinder engine as its hatchback counterpart, producing 69hp and 95.2Nm in CNG mode and 83hp with 113Nm in petrol-only mode.

Compared to the Tigor iCNG, the Aura CNG offers a higher claimed mileage figure of 28.5km/kg from its 65-litre tank. During our test ride of the compact sedan, we liked its premium cabin layout with multiple convenience features. However, we found the Aura’s styling polarising. Plus, the lack of front adjustable headrests with excessive lumbar support on the seats may cause discomfort while driving for long hours.

8. Tata Tiago iCNG  26.49km/kg
Tata Motors entered the CNG market early in 2022 with the Tata Tiago iCNG hatchback and the Tigor iCNG sedan. The carmaker launched the Tiago CNG in four variants including the base XE trim as well as the top-end XZ+. The aim is to suit a cost-driven buyer as well as one looking for a more premium user experience.

With the CNG tank in the boot, Tata has also retained the regular petrol tank, which has a 35-litre capacity, while the CNG tank is 60 litres, which enables you to get about 10kg of gas inside. Tata claims a mileage of 26.49km/kg of gas.

9. Tata Tigor iCNG – 26.49km/kg
Launched along with the Tiago iCNG, the Tigor iCNG is the most affordable compact sedan in the market. Sharing the same powertrain as its Tiago sibling, it produces 70hp and 95Nm in CNG mode and 86hp with 113Nm in petrol-only mode. Tata offers the CNG kit on two top-spec trims – XZ and XZ+, which are priced at Rs 784,000 and Rs 844,000, respectively.

And just like the Tiago iCNG, the Tigor iCNG too offers the least claimed fuel economy – 26.49km/kg. In our in-depth review, we appreciated the Tigor iCNG’s easy driving dynamics and Harman audio system. However, we did not like the petrol's fuel efficiency, limited boot space and claimed range. You can also check out our real world fuel economy test of the Tigor iCNG by clicking here.

10. Maruti Suzuki Ertiga – 26.11km/kg
The most expensive CNG car on sale today, the Ertiga is offered in VXi and ZXi trims starting from Rs 10.44 lakh, going up to Rs 11.54 lakh. The recently updated 2022 Ertiga is powered by a 1.5-litre, K15C engine that’s mated to a sole 5-speed manual transmission. The MPV puts out 86hp and 121Nm in CNG mode and 99hp with 136Nm in petrol-only mode.

The Ertiga CNG has no immediate rivals in the segment, making it the only 7-seater MPV with feel-good features as seen on other Maruti vehicles. With a 60-litre tank onboard, the Ertiga CNG offers a claimed mileage figure of 26.11km/kg. Despite its expensive price tag, the Ertiga offers a plush ride with seat comfort and space.

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