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Mar 10, 2018 04:04 PM IST | Source:

This week in Auto: Govt launches national E-Mobility programme, Tata Motors unveils E-Vision

Read on for a round of all the news from the automotive industry of the past week.

Swaraj Baggonkar @swarajsb

The rollout of the e-mobility programme by Union Minister of State Power R K Singh cleared the government's stand on improving the battery charging infrastructure for electric vehicles in the country. The government noted that charging standards need to be enhanced in vehicles. Read on for a round up of all the important stories of the past week in the automotive industry.

Government launches national e-mobility programme

The programme will look to provide an impetus to the entire e-mobility ecosystem including vehicle manufacturers, charging infrastructure companies, fleet operators and charging infrastructure of service providers. The move has made many things clear for manufacturers as well as buyers of e-vehicles.

The programme will be implemented by Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL), which will aggregate demand by procuring electric vehicles in bulk to get economies of scale. These electric vehicles will replace the existing fleet of petrol and diesel vehicles. EESL had procured 10,000 e-vehicles last year and will issue a new tender very soon for 10,000 more e-vehicles to cater to the growing demand. With these 20,000 electric cars, India is expected to save over 5 crore litres of fuel every year leading to a reduction of over 5.6 lakh tonnes of CO2 emission annually.

The government is also focusing on creating charging infrastructure and policy framework so that by 2030 more than 30 per cent of vehicles are electricity vehicles. During the programme, it was highlighted that a license would not be required for establishing a charging infrastructure and the tariff for this would be less than Rs 6.

In December last year the government was committed to launching an electric vehicle policy that would have laid down thorough guidelines for adoption of e-mobility in future. However, in January there made a U-turn and stated that there was no need for such a policy, but an action plan would be initiated headed by Niti Aayog.

Tata Motors unveils E-Vision electric sedan

The larger theme from this year’s Geneva Auto Show was very similar to the Indian Auto Expo held last month. Electric mobility dominated the concept of nearly every car maker that participated in the event. From glitzy super cars to compact city hatchbacks car makers left no stone unturned to be a part of the electric revolution.

Tata Motors, which was celebrating 20 years at the Geneva Auto Show, unveiled the E-Vision, a concept electric sedan alongside the H5X and 45X concepts. Although it is a design study, if approved by members of its board, it could make it to production in about four years time. The company has not revealed mechanical or price details of the car, but pundits have positioned the E-Vision in the same bracket as that of Tesla Model 3, which is priced at USD 35,000.

This was not the first time that Tata Motors showcased a concept electric car at the annual event. In fact the Geneva Auto Expo, widely considered to be among the most popular shows worldwide, has been a breeding ground of ideas for Tata Motors. In 2012, the company had showcased the Megapixel, a compact four-seater hybrid concept with a mileage of 100 km per litre. This concept never made it to showrooms.

Ducati, Indian, BMW cut bike prices

Ducati and Indian have joined the bandwagon and cut prices of their imported bikes line-up after the government announced a massive reduction in customs duty a few weeks back.

Vehicle prices of US-based luxury cruiser brand Indian have been reduced by up to Rs 3 lakh, the fall is steeper in the case of Ducati at Rs 8.5 lakh. Last month, BMW Motorrad, the bike making division of the German luxury auto giant, had slashed prices by up to 10 percent with a maximum cut of Rs 1.6 lakh and a minimum cut of Rs 40,000.

The Indian government, last month, had cut customs duty on all fully-imported bikes by up to 25 percentage points and brought it down to 50 percent. A day later US President Donald Trump had severely criticised India’s high tax structure on imported bikes from the US.
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