India is one of the fastest growing economies in the world. It has experienced tremendous growth in recent years. Hence, it is about time that the demand for electric vehicles picked up in India. The focus on next-generation mobility is the main reason behind the popularity of electric vehicles in India. The National Electric Mobility Mission Plan (NEMMP) 2020 had been unveiled back in the year 2013 by the previous government led by Congress. It set things into perspective about electric cars and green mobility. Ever since the NEMMP 2020, India has been eager to adopt electric vehicles in order to become an eco friendly country.
Climate Risk Index
German Watch had released the Climate Risk Index 2020 in December of 2019. It revealed that India became the 5th global vulnerability ladder in 2018 as compared to its 14th spot back in 2017. This only makes it more necessary for India to allow electric vehicles to take over to reduce the country’s dependence on fossil fuels. Although the initial push had been made towards electric two-wheelers or three-wheelers, there is a dire need for electric cars and public transportation. Thus, many major auto manufacturers have entered the Indian market to take advantage of this untapped potential.
What Is An Electric Car?
In the simplest of words, an electric car is a car which uses rechargeable batteries for powering its electric motors rather than relying on diesel or petrol. EV chargers in India are needed for powering electric vehicles. There are three types of electric cars which are common. These are mentioned below.
- Electric cars that use on-board battery packs.
- Hybrid electric cars that are powered by batteries and internal combustion.
- Solar-powered electric vehicles.
Generally, when referring to electric cars in terms of environmental conservation and mobility, battery electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles are discussed.
What Are Automobile Makers Doing In India?
As the demand for electric vehicles skyrockets in India, more and more automobile makers are manufacturing electric vehicles that cater to the Indian market. Some of the electric vehicles launched by automakers in India include the MG ZS, the Tata Tigor EV 2019, Porsche Taycan, Mahindra e20, Mahindra e-Verito, and the Hyundai Kona Electric. However, it is important to note that there many other automobile manufacturers that have plans to enter the India market. Thus, India seems to be on the right path becoming an EV-Nation. There has also been great enthusiasm surrounding Tesla launching in India this year. Many other global automobile makers are interested in testing the Indian market.
Will Electric Cars Dominate the Indian Automobile Market?
As popularity for electric vehicles picks up in India, there is a trend where many Indians seem to prefer electric vehicles instead of conventional vehicles which are powered by petrol or diesel. This shows that there is great potential for electric cars in the Indian automobile market.
Why Electric Vehicles Are Considered A Promising Option?
When it comes to the Indian audience, industry leaders have found electric cars to be a great option. A shift to electric vehicles is expected due to the timely adoption, electrification of vehicles, and easier access to charging infrastructure. Metropolitan cities are expected to benefit from this switch tremendously as they suffer from catastrophic levels of air pollution.
Furthermore, it is important to note that the median age in India is 27 years which means that it is the younger generation that will drive the innovation, environmental conservation, and sustainability. Indigenous availability of all vital products is ensured as startups and established conglomerates collaborate through the manufacturing of batteries, components, and vehicles.
Benefits of Using Electric Vehicles
There are many advantages of using electric vehicles. At the most fundamental level, electric vehicles have a significantly lower operating cost unlike conventional vehicles that have internal combustion engines. Electric vehicles tend to be 75 to 85 percent cheaper on an average in terms of fuel and maintenance costs. This is what encourages Indian consumers who have high usage to make the switch to electric vehicles. Since it is cheaper to charge a battery rather than filling the fuel tank, electric vehicles are the future of India. Electric vehicles tend to have fewer moving components which results in a considerably lower maintenance bill. Besides, electric vehicles also offer optimal drivability and performance.
Challenges Faced In India for Consumer Adoption of Electric Vehicles
Although electric vehicles are gaining popularity in India fast, there are still old norms that need to be broken away in order to establish new consumer behavior. Consumers are anxious about the range and speed of electric vehicles. Therefore, consumers need to be educated and electric vehicles need to be promoted within the Indian automobile market. The following are some of the challenges faced by India.
- Creation of the closed-loop.
- Management of the gap between supply and demand.
- Battery performance.
- The charging infrastructure.
Battery Cell Manufacturing
India does not have adequate primary battery cell manufacturing options. Thus, there is the risk of growth in trade deficit. Currently, most of the manufacturers have to rely on batteries that are imported from Europe, South Korea, China, and Japan. Thus, the Indian market requires indigenous technologies which suit the Indian market like aluminum fuel cells.
Creation of Charging Infrastructure
There is a lack of charging infrastructure in India. It has to be a combination of existing and alternative locations. Improvement in battery swapping station will help reduce wait times for charging. This will help ensure that there is an increase in available range, a reduction in battery size, and better use of land.
Improvement in Battery Performance
The key to fueling the growth in the number of electric vehicles in India is an improvement in battery performance. It is important that batteries are produced to be more durable. Only the Hyundai Kona electric offers the highest range for a single charge. It covers 452 km which is something Indian manufacturers need to focus on.
Managing Supply-Demand Gap
In order to boost electric vehicle ownership in India, the gap between supply and demand for electric vehicles has to be better managed in the most cost-effective manner.
India is one of the most promising markets for electric vehicles. As the popularity of electric vehicles increases in the country, there are certain challenges that need to be dealt with.