TVS Scooty hybrid to hit roads this year

Written by Shweta Bhanot | Mumbai | Updated: Jan 26 2010, 06:33am hrs
Chennai-based TVS Motor Company is set to launch the country's first hybrid scooter by the year-end. The 90cc TVS Scooty Streak hybrid will have a four-stroke engine and an electric-hub motor. It is a parallel hybrid system, wherein, both engine and electric vehicle modes are made available. The two-wheeler was showcased by the company at the recent Auto Expo.

The two-wheeler hybrid will cover 30 kilometres per battery charge. It weighs 115 kilograms and has a lead-acid battery. "The company also plans to have a plug-in hybrid of the two-wheeler," a company official had said at the Auto Expo in New Delhi recently.

In a bid to make the ride convenient, the Streak hybrid will have four optional modes like electric only - for short trips and zero-fuel consumption; engine only - when battery power is very low; hybrid electric mode - both sources run as per the programmed strategy and hybrid power mode- both engine and electric together for better acceleration. However, the discounting part is the luggage space which is not there at all.

The company claims that the hybrid can achieve 30% CO2 emission reduction and 30% improvement in fuel economy (all at IDC condition).

Currently, the two-wheeler market is flooded with 'electric' offerings from small and big makers including Hero Electric, BSA Motors and TVS, among others. The electric two-wheelers make close to 95% of the total electric offerings from the Indian automobile industry. However, the makers have been suffering with low visibility and misperception on the back of countervailing duty on import of components and value added tax. The Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) is believed to be in talks with state governments to reduce VAT and expects countervailing duty to be withdrawn in the forthcoming budget to boost newer technologies. Similar concerns are on the success of hybrid technology. Of the eight million unit two-wheelers market per annum, scooters stand at around one million units per annum.