Tata Motors is indeed betting big on its electric cars strategy and is now readying its first ever electric car Tata Tigor which will be delivered to the state-run Energy Efficiency Services (EESL) in phases and in the first phase Tata Motors will deliver 350 electric Tata Tigor by 30th November 2017. EESL is yet to notify the time-frame for the second phase and will do so post the completion of phase 1 deliveries. The electric cars being brought by EESL will cost them Rs 11.2 lakh per unit and will highlight the government's ambitious plan for a mass shift to electrification of vehicles by 2032.
Tata Tigor Electric will be will be rolled form its Sanand plant in Gujarat and from a leaked ARAI document being circulated on the internet claims that the electric Tata Tigor will be powered by a 85 kW electric motor and the car will also weight almost 200 kgs less than the regular Tata Tigor variants.
In the EESL tender, Tata Motors had bid for Rs 11.2 lakh including annual maintenance contract, which was Rs 2.3 lakh lower than M&M's bid. Tata Motors also offered a substantially lower running cost of Rs 0.25/km compared to Rs 1.35/km by M&M confirmed EESL.
"We will be making enough money from each of the units that we will be selling to EESL. As of now, we will be selling 6,500-7,000 units and if the other company (Mahindra) opts out we will lap up the rest of the order as well," Guenter Butschek, MD & CEO of Tata Motors said. The company is also affirmative to meet the delivery deadline of November 30 for the first phase to deliver 500 units of electric Tigor.
"All I can tell you now is that we are capable of meeting all the order requirements," said Butschek who was addressing the media at the second quarter earnings presser. In sharp contrast, it can be noted that days after agreeing to match Tata Motors' order, Pawan Goenka, managing director of M&M, had said they would lose money on every unit of its fully electric sedans it had committed to supply to EESL and that he was stumped by the Tata Motor’s pricing.
"It is difficult to comprehend the price quoted by the L1 bidder (Tata Motors) though we've been in the e-vehicle business for some time and we know the cost structure and subsystems very well.
"We will not be making any money on the cars we supply to EESL. We will be losing money on every car," Pawan Goenka had said.
The EESL contract will be executed in phases and the first phase involves 500 cars. These electric vehicles procured from Mahindra and Tata will replace the existing petrol and diesel cars currently being used by the central government and its agencies over a 3-4 year period. Government's move to electrify its car fleet shows how serious it is about electrification and slowly but steadily would also focus on developing infrastructure.
Tata Motors had initially opted for 250 cars but increased it to 350 after M&M chose only 150. "I don't know the specifications of the L1 car since it is not yet out in the market, unlike the Verito, which has been there for sometime. The Verito has a 20.5 kwh electric motor which can do 170-180 km on a full charge," Goenka added.
According to EESL tender, the sedan should have a range of 130 km on a full charge, can be fully charged in 6 hrs and should have a fast charge option of 90 minutes. Goenka had also said they had not decided on bidding for the second phase saying, "will take a call if we are able to bring down the cost."
Other than Tata Motors and Mahindra, Nissan too had bid on this tender floted by EESL to procure electric cars. But the electric game in India has just begun and going forward there will be room for every auto-maker to have an established electric product portfolio. Electric cars running on Indian roads is the futures and inevitable, it will also reset the competition in the car industry in many ways. India have 20 cars for over 1000 habitants and so India is a paradise for car makers, If the infrastructure can be managed efficiently, it can be a paradise for everybody.
(With inputs and quotes from PTI)