Nearly a week after previewing the Comet EV, MG Motor India has launched the base model at Rs 7.98 lakh. The bookings for this model will commence on May 15 and deliveries in the same month in select cities. This is the second electric vehicle (EV) by the Chinese-owned British marque after the ZS EV, which was launched in India in 2020.
Comet EV, which becomes the most affordable electric car in the Indian market, will be pitted against the Tata Tiago EV and the Citroen EC3 electric cars in the urban EV segment. To be available in multiple variants, MG Motor India is yet to reveal the price range of all its models.
The company is positioning its entry model as a 'viable urban mobility option' and is primarily targeting customers who prioritise a zero-emission vehicle that has a 'lower running cost' compared to ‘conventional’ vehicles.
Rajeev Chaba, president and managing director, MG Motor India, said, “With the Comet EV, we aim to empower our customers to make a smart choice without compromising on style or convenience.” He had earlier clarified that the car is aimed at customers who travel less than 100 km per day. He also indicated that the company will not be selling this car at a loss.
MG Motor India stated that the two-door electric hatchback will be equipped with a 17.3 kWh battery pack that will offer a claimed range of 230 km on a full charge. Further, charging it via the 3.3kW unit will take seven hours for 0-100 percent and five hours for 10-80 per cent. It gets a single motor that is mounted on the rear axle and has a peak power output of 42PS and max torque of 110Nm, as claimed by the company.
"In India, EVs are less than 2 percent but this number will go up. For India, the tipping point would be when the penetration levels reach 10 percent and there are more choices for consumers around the Rs 10 lakh price range," Chaba had said last week during a roundtable conference.
Ramping up production
The content localisation of Comet EV will be about around 54 percent in the initial phase, and will be enhanced to 60 percent by the end of this year. The carmaker has partnered with Tata AutoComp Systems to source batteries for the car.
MG Motor India anticipates a strong response and will be gradually ramping up production to around 3,000 units a month. It has already revealed that it has invested around Rs 800 crore to produce the car locally at its plant in Halol, Gujarat. With the launch of the model, the company is also anticipating 30 percent of its sales to come from the EV segment this year.
"The sale of electric passenger vehicles is set to rise dramatically in India, from around 50,000 units last year to probably around 125,000-130,000 units this year. During 2023, we expect 30 percent of our total sales of around 80,000-90,000 units to come from the two electric models," Chaba said, adding, “If we are fortunate, we could produce between 80,000 and 1 lakh units this year and next year our output should be 1.2 lakh units."