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Wednesday, Jul 10, 2002

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BPCL launches `premium' fuel

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Mr Ram Naik, Minister for Petroleum & Natural Gas, with Mr Mur li Deora, MP, at the launch of `New Generation' petrol by Bharat Petroleum Corporation in Mumbai on Tuesday.

MUMBAI, July 9

BHARAT Petroleum Corporation Ltd on Tuesday introduced petrol blended with fuel additives for premium class cars such as Honda, Ford, Hyundai and Maruti and two-wheelers such as Fiero.

BPCL is the first oil company in the country to market this premium fuel, company officials said.

The petrol, which will be sold under the brand name Speed, will be available at all Pure for Sure retail outlets. Priced at Rs 1.25 per litre above ordinary petrol, the fuel will be available in Mumbai, to begin with, followed by Delhi, Kolkata and Chennai and Bangalore. The product is customised for premium vehicles using fuel additives for enhancing performance.

"This is part of the on-going efforts of oil companies to provide customers with quality product at reasonable prices," said Mr Ram Naik, Union Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, at a function to introduce the product held here today.

BPCL has sourced the additives to be mixed in petrol from Chevron Oronite, a Chevron Texaco company and will be imported from Singapore. The company has targeted initial sales of 50 kl per outlet per month, said Mr S Behuria, Chairman and Managing Director, BPCL.

"The world over, this premium blend of petrol costs about 10 per cent higher than ordinary petrol. But in India, keeping in mind that this is the first time that we are introducing this product and that Indian consumers are more price conscious, we have priced it only marginally higher," Mr Rajiv Chaturvedi, Executive Director, BPCL, said on the sidelines of the function.

The company will be test marketing the product in Mumbai for the next three months, Mr Chaturvedi said.

With a large number of luxury cars plying Indian roads, there is a growing demand for fuel additives to enhance vehicle performance.

BPCL along with Iftex, a private company, already markets Bharat Iftex additives through its retail network.

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