India EV News: Government and Market Update

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India EV News: Government proposes to hike customs duty on imported electric vehicles in Budget 2020 to promote indigenous manufacturing; Kinetic Green, BPCL in e-mobility partnership to plan India-wide battery swapping network; Electric vehicles in various segments launched in India around AutoExpo 2020

The NRDC India EV News is a selection of news highlights about electric mobility in India.

National Government

Budget 2020: Government proposes to hike customs duty on imported electric vehicles

Imported electric vehicles are set to become costlier as Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced an increase in customs duty on various kinds of such vehicles, as the government pushes to promote local production.

"Under 'Make in India' initiative, well laid-out customs duty rates were pre-announced for items like mobile phones, electric vehicles, and their components. This has ensured a gradual increase in domestic value addition capacity in India," Sitharaman said while presenting Budget 2020-21. (...) (Yourstory, 1 February 2020)

Government To Drop Registration Fees For Buying EVs

Minister of heavy industries and public enterprises, Prakash Javadekar has said that the government is proposing to scrap registration fees for EVs. It will also use the Union Budget to give an additional income tax deduction of Rs 1.5 lakh on interest paid on loans taken to buy EVs. (...) (Electronics B2B, 13 February 2020)

Reserves of lithium, required for producti`on of EV batteries, found near Bengaluru

Good news for the Electric Vehicle (EV) sector as reserves of lithium have been discovered in Mandya, 100 km from Bengaluru in Karnataka. The quantity is estimated to be 30,00 tonnes of Li2O. While this comes as welcome news, the reserve is small as compared to major producers such as Chile with its 8.6 million tonnes reserve, Australia with 2.8 million tonnes, Argentina with 1.7 million tonnes, and Portugal with 60,000 tonnes. (...) (The Economic Times, 18 February 2020)

Startups look to outpace OEMs in India’s electric vehicle space

Opportunities around the electric mobility ecosystem are classified into three broad categories: product manufacturing, EV charging infrastructure and services. Startups in electric mobility cater to all the three opportunity areas as new business models are starting to emerge. Startups are betting on their advantages of nimbleness and adaptability to edge past conventional manufacturers. Ather Energy and Tork Motors are among a handful of startups that have strong financial backing from high profile investors. (...) (Livemint, 5 February 2020)


State Governments

Tata Motors To Supply Tigor EVs To Gujarat Vij Under EESL Tender


Tata Motors has announced a partnership with Uttar Gujarat Vij Company Ltd. (UGVCL), and under the partnership, the automaker will be deploying its Tigor EVs. The electric sedans will be supplied in Gandhinagar and Ahmedabad in Gujarat and is part of the company's tender with EESL. The first batch of cars were flagged off by Minister of Energy, Saurabhbhai Patel and Mahesh Singh, Managing Director, UGVCL, along with a host of other dignitaries at the ceremony. (...) (NDTV, 16 February 2020)

Industry seeks clarity on electric vehicle roadmap, Telangana

The state government Telangana said that despite not having a policy, it has guidelines in place and has been receptive of companies willing to invest in Telangana.

Kinetic Green founder and CEO Sulajja Firodia Motwani said, “We were very bullish on Hyderabad as it is a very large two wheeler and three-wheeler market but nothing much has happened in the last one year as there is no clear policy framework.” Michael Liu, chairman, Dao EVTech, said that the Telangana government should also abolish road tax on EVs like Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka.

Industries & IT principal secretary Jayesh Ranjan pointed out that the state government has guidelines in place and has been able to attract four battery manufacturers in the state and is also hopeful of clinching two mega OEMs in the coming days. (...) (Time of India, 29 January 2020)

IOC to set up EV charging stations across Kerala

Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) is also developing an integrated fuel complex in Thiruvananthapuram with LNG storage, production and dispensing of CNG and a retail outlet for dispensing petrol, diesel, lubricants and CNG. As a part of its green initiative, Indian Oil is setting up electric vehicles (EVcharging stations across Kerala, said V C Asokan, chief general manager and head of Kerala office, Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) Ltd. Asokan also stated that two EV charging stations in Kerala and 14 more stations will be set up soon. (...) (Economic Times, 25 February 2020)

Tata Power plans to have 700 EV charging stations by 2021

Tata Power has signed MoUs for setting up commercial EV charging stations at HPCL, IOCL, and IGL retail outlets. The company has already installed 100 fast charging stations in various cities. In Mumbai, the company has already set up 30 station, which it expects to increase to 200 by next year. (...) (Livemint, 17 February 2020)


EV Motors India inks pact with BSES Yamuna Power charging infra in Delhi

Electric vehicle startup EV Motors India (EVM) signed an agreement with BSES Yamuna Power Ltd. (BYPL) to set up and operate charging stations for electric vehicles at select locations under the jurisdiction of BYPL. EVM has launched its public EV charging outlet under the brand 'PlugNgo' in DLF Cybercity, Gurugram and seeking to install over 6500 charging outlets, each with multiple charging stations, spread across cities, businesses and residential complexes of India, over the next five years. (...) (Economic Times, 24 February 2020)

 EESL partners with BSNL to install 1,000 EV charging stations across India

Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), for the installation of 1,000 public EV charging stations. Under this partnership, EESL will set up public charging stations in BSNL sites in a phased manner across the country. (...) (Economic Times, 18 February 2020)

Kinetic Green, BPCL in e-mobility partnership; plan India-wide battery swapping network with IIT Madras IoT tech

Kinetic Green Energy and Power Solutions, which manufactures electric vehicles, and public sector oil and gas major Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) have signed an agreement for the launch of ‘e-Drive’, an electric vehicle mobility solution based on swappable battery technology. Kinetic and BPCL have developed the solution in association with IIT Chennai for a comprehensive IOT based system. The system monitors the battery and station, which are IoT enabled and linked to an app. (...) (Autocar Pro News Desk, 3 February 2020)

Top Electric cars showcased at the Auto Expo 2020

Electric mobility is the future. And we got a glimpse of it at the 2020 Auto Expo. Some of the top electric cars which caught the attention from India’s biggest biennial stage included Volkswagen ID Crozz, Mahindra eKUV100, Mahindra eXUV300, Renault Zoe EV, Renault K-ZE, Tata Sierra, Tata Nexon and Altroz EV, MG Marvel X, Kia Soul EV, Mercedes-Benz EQC 1886, Haima E1 etc. (…) (, 11 February 2020)

New EV Launches

JBM launched electric bus ECO-LIFE e9

JBM Auto launched electric bus ECO-LIFE e9, powered by fast charging lithium batteries, at the auto expo 2020. It can run 125-150 kms in a single charge, depending on the city's traffic conditions, the company said. (...) (Business Standard, 5 February 2020)

Cellestial E-Mobility unveils new electric-tractor with battery swap and regenerative breaking

The Hyderabad headquartered start-up Cellestial E-Mobility, rolled out a new, and its first E-tractor with performance metrics that match 4X of the equivalent Diesel-powered tractor. The company targets to build 8000 tractors in the next 36 months . (...) (Indiaweb2, 12 February 2020)

Auto Expo 2020: Mahindra eKUV100 launched in India; price starts at Rs 8.25 lakh

Mahindra & Mahindra launched the eKUV100 in India at the Auto Expo 2020 for a starting price of Rs 8.25 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). The price includes the FAME benefits. The eKUV100 electric vehicle comes with a 15.9 lithium-ion battery, that can be charged from 0-80 per cent in 60 minutes. The claimed range of the EV is 147 km. (...) (Indiatoday, 5 February 2020)

Toyota unveils self-charging hybrid EV Vellfire at ₹79.5 lakh

Toyota Kirloskar Motor (TKM) unveiled the Vellfire, the new luxurious self-charging hybrid electric multi-purpose vehicle in India. It is a 7-seater luxurious minivan comes with two electric motors and a hybrid battery to control emissions.

The company has already sold more than 6,00,000 units globally and has introduced Vellfire in CBU form, priced at ₹79.5 lakh ex-showroom. (…) (The Hindu Business Line, 26 February 2020)

Pure EV launches electric scooter EPluto 7G, priced at Rs 79,999

Pure EV, a startup incubated at the Indian Institute of Technology, Hyderabad, launched its high speed electric scooter 'EPluto 7G', at a price tag of Rs 79,999 (ex-showroom). As the EV maker claims, this scooter will offer a long range, a top speed of 60 kmph and battery warranty for 40,000 km. (...) (Economic Times, 10 February 2020)

Ather 450X launched at Rs 99,000: India’s quickest electric scooter cheaper than Chetak, iQube

The new Ather 450X has been launched in India at a price of Rs 99,000 (ex Showroom Bengaluru). The new model that is being touted as a ‘super scooter’ gets multiple improvements over the Ather 450. Starting with the performance, the newly launched Ather 450X can do a sprint from a standstill to 40 kmph in just 3.3 seconds as against 3.9 seconds time on the Ather 450. (...) (Financial Express, 28 January 2020)

Nexzu Mobility enters e-bicycle segment, launches 3 variants

E-scooter manufacturer Nexzu Mobility, formerly Avan Motors, announced foray into the fast growing e-bicycle segment with the launch of three variants -- Roadlark, Aello, and Rompus. The three vehicles are priced between ₹25,000-37,000, a company official said. Equipped with lithium-ion batteries that have an average lifecycle of 750 charges, the e-cycles can be fully charged in 3-4 hours, the company said.. (...) (Hindustan Times, 18 February 2020)

Compiled by Charu Lata and Preeti Gulati.

Note: The linked articles and excerpts in this post are provided for informational purposes only and do not necessarily reflect the views or positions of the Natural Resources Defense Council.