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This week in Auto: Suzuki to launch EV in 2025, Bajaj to launch new company for EVs, Mahindra recall SUVs and more

Here is a complete round up of all the big news of the automotive space this week

July 24, 2021 / 10:02 AM IST

Electric vehicles are certainly gaining momentum in India. From setting up new companies to announcing entry into the segment to readying a bouquet of products; established brands and companies are formulating strategies as demand for such products gathers steams. More on this later in the copy but first here is a complete round up of all the big news of the automotive space this week.

M&M recalls 600 vehicles

Mahindra & Mahindra has announced a recall of less than 600 vehicles that were made at its Nashik factory for replacement of their diesel engines suspected of premature wear.

The limited batch of vehicles manufactured between June 21 and July 2, 2021, were fed with contaminated fuel, the Mumbai-based company stated.

Suzuki to enter EV market in 2025

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Suzuki Motor Corp will enter the electric vehicle market by 2025 starting in India, Nikkei reported on Monday.

The automaker plans an all-electric compact model to be made available for around 1.5 million yen ($13,626) after government subsidies are taken into account, the Nikkei said.

Aprilia working on a 350cc bike

Italian race bike manufacturer Aprilia is working on a 300c-350cc motorcycle for India based on a completely new platform which is slated for debut in the next 2-3 years.

The platform which will spawn a range of motorcycles is targeted at the mid-capacity segment of bikes which is gaining momentum not just in India but outside the country as well.

Audi launches e-tron

German luxury carmaker Audi on Thursday launched three all-electric SUVs under its e-tron range with prices starting from Rs 99.99 lakh kicking off its electrification journey in the country.

The three all-electric SUVs -- e-tron 50, e-tron 55 and e-tron Sportback 55 -- are priced at Rs 99.99 lakh, Rs 1.16 crore and Rs 1.18 crore respectively (all prices ex-showroom), Audi India said in a statement.

Bajaj Auto to set up new EV company

Bajaj Auto will set up a wholly-owned subsidiary to tap growth opportunities in the electric and hybrid two-wheeler, three-wheeler and light four-wheeler categories.

The proposed authorised capital of the 100 percent subsidiary company will be Rs 100 crore and the paid-up capital being proposed is Rs 5 crore.

Is Maruti Suzuki late to the EV party?

Suzuki Motor Corporation (SMC), the parent company of India’s largest carmaker Maruti Suzuki, has committed to launch its first electric vehicle (EV) in 2025, starting in India, as per a Japanese daily. This EV could be priced below Rs 10 lakh.

While no further details are available on this SMC recently announced joining hands with Toyota, Daihatshu, and others for developing electric small commercial vehicles for the Japanese market. Most likely, Toyota and SMC will work together for the proposed EV for India.

By 2025 India will have more than a dozen EVs in the non-luxury four-wheeler segment. Tata Motors will most likely lead the pack with 8-9 models which is in line with its commitment of having 2 launches every year. Mahindra & Mahindra, the country’s fifth-largest passenger vehicle player, is slated to be second with at least 3 EVs. Hyundai, MG Motor and Ola Electric are some of the other brands that are slated to launch EVs by 2025.

Maruti Suzuki has been testing several EVs for the past three years in different driving conditions across the country. A modified Wagon R is the test car for the company which Maruti Suzuki has ruled out for a commercial launch.

Despite the late entry, Maruti Suzuki may not be at the losing end after all considering the massive retail reach and the manufacturing know-how of the company. Maruti Suzuki has the largest number of dealerships in the country. It also has the biggest database of car buyers who would be the primary target for the up-gradation to EVs.

With years of manufacturing experience, Maruti Suzuki has the advantage of keeping costs under control and this would be seen for its EV venture as well. The initial buying cost followed by the limited drive range are the two biggest impediments for consumers for switching to EVs.

However, with battery costs falling further coupled with new innovations in technology, these two apprehensions should give way to buyer confidence, say, manufacturers.
Swaraj Baggonkar
first published: Jul 24, 2021 10:02 am

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