What Tesla’s entry would bring to India?

Tesla recently announced its entry in the Indian market and with it came the massive morale boost and hype around the adoption of Hybrids and Electric Vehicles.

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Sarangarajan VElectric vehicles and Hybrids are not only just more economic with increased fuel efficiency and decreased energy costs but they are also more eco-friendly as they have a significant reduction in their green-house gasses emissions over the conventional vehicles making it a perfect choice in this era of increasing global warning. Writes Sarangarajan V, Co-Founder and CTO of Skill Lync

This change in the market perception was long sought in a country like India with the third largest road network in the world. As currently there are apglobal warningproximately 253 million or more vehicles on road raising serious concerns due to the pollution caused by these vehicles. The Government has initiated multiple policies to tackle this situation and promote a positive change in people’s mind-set towards the adoption of EVs and Hybrid cars, but an internal ignition in people’s mind frames is what is needed can be a major driving force. Some of the initiatives taken up by the government are National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020, 2 phases of Scheme for faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid and) Electric Vehicles in India (FAME India & FAME-II), and EV@30 campaign.

Current Scenario of EVs in India

As of today, 50K includes vehicles with an advanced battery pack and is registered/incentivized under the Fame-II scheme as per their website. This base 50K vehicles include buses, 2,3 and, 4 wheelers. Although, it is a good number to initiate but it is futile when compared to the actual demand of EVs India needs to achieve the 100% Electrification Goal by 2030.

Based on the current population and the projected number of 4 wheelers in India, there are approximately 26000 4-wheelers for every group of a million people. Whereas, there are just 34 EVs including all 2,3 and, 4 wheelers and heavy vehicles for every group of a million people as the current contribution of EVs according to the Fame-II website. This number implies shortcomings in overcoming the massive dearth of EVs in India as, the EV infrastructure should scale up by a factor of 760 EVs for every group of a million people in the next 9 years to match with 2020’s number of non-EV cars.

Now, in order to support this scale, a massive amount of capital investment is the need of the hour. Multiple further policies will be required by the government to curb these mandates in order to promote and catapult the technological advancements required to support and back this much-needed development.

Required Developments

Electric Vehicle ChargingThe first problem that needs to be addressed and highlighted is to figure out a delivery pipeline for the primary energy source viz. the Battery. It is imperative that factories are set up in India supplying batteries to various brands both Local and Global for the making of totally locally built units or CKD units of their EVs. India must aim for the sun to land on the moon, we must put in our every effort to be able to establish at least one factory by the end of 2022, which will be equivalent to the ‘Tesla Gigafactory’ in order to be able to achieve the scale up by a factor of 760 EVs for every group of a million people in the next 9 years to match with 2020’s number of non-EV cars. Once established, privatising the industry later on will also help boost the competition and its various branches as company that produces the cheapest battery will win.

Secondly, setting up servicing units and developing new products around battery technology to help support the huge number of EVs in the future is also required. Building and scaling up the network  of charging stations is also required to support the increasing demand for Evs. It is not unimaginable, that someday companies try to Replicate the ‘Uber and Ola model’ but instead of the Taxis, they will be focusing on the smart ways of identifying the concentrated geographical demand and cater to tht demand through their portable charging stations.

Apart from the aforementioned components such as batteries and related products, the other components that are typically found only in EVs can still be serviced by a conventional service centre and hyper-local mechanic shops.

There is a massive dearth of EVs in the Indian market and with much awaited entries of global players like Tesla, the advancement process for this is only expected to ameliorate.