EV market is electrifying, but it needs a spark

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Sameer Ranjan Jaiswal can point a finger at why electric vehicles are not preferred in a country where fossil fuel prices can be stratospheric. It was realized that Jaiswal had resumed.

The Bengaluru-based engineer had set up e-bike rental service Fe Bikes in 2018. He soon realized a gaping hole in this nascent market. So in 2020, he started a charger to network low-cost EV charging stations through grocery stores, cafes, and tea shops.

Jaiswal recalls his friend Shwetabh Soni’s experience of misconduct – “a proud owner of an electric scooter” who used it every day for the commute to his office. In January 2019, Sony had to travel almost twice the normal distance at work. On his way back, his scooter ran out of the battery, leaving him stranded in an unfamiliar area. Sony requested nearby shopkeepers to allow a portable charger to connect to a power unit in their shops. No one was willing to help. Soni had to push the vehicle towards her house. It took him four hours. Jaiswal says, “That day he decided never to use an electric vehicle again in his life.

Bike and Scooter Demand

All government support can go to waste if the focus remains on electric cars, experts say. Most electric mobility schemes and incentives are not suitable for two-wheelers and three-wheelers, making electric two and three-wheelers 99% of EV sales, says Jaiswal.

Three companies

Online delivery services have already created a market for electric two and three-wheelers. For example, e-commerce chief Flipkart had said in August 2020 that it would implement full electric mobility by 2030. Flipkart has started deploying two-wheeler and three-wheeler EVS at several delivery places, says Mahesh Pratap Singh, head of Flipkart’s Sustainability and Social Responsibility. “We have more than 500 EVs in our logistics fleet and adoption is growing every month.”

Export capacity

While China dominates the EV mobility market, the epidemic has caught the world’s eye on the east Asian giant’s options. Experts say it would not be far from saying that India could become a leading EV manufacturer and exporter with a naj in the right direction. But committed research and development, capital, and support from the public and private sector are required.

Swapnil Jain, CTO, Ether Energy, says India has the potential to lead the EV two-wheeler market globally, just as China leads the global smartphone market. “Indian companies have already made their presence felt in the global automobile segment. Brands like Bajaj and Hero MotoCorp have a strong two-wheeler presence in Latin America, Africa, the Middle East, and South Asia. We can now leverage the same expertise to promote and sell EVS to the global market.

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