While the talks about Electric vehicles in India is at an all-time high, the sale of electric vehicles in India still remains less than 1% of total vehicles sold in the country. Despite the growth of massive 124%, the electric vehicle sales during the financial year 2017-18 reported a sales of just 56,000 units and were dominated by e-Scooters confirms data released by Society of Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles (SMEV). The industry had sold 25,000 electric vehicles in FY 2016-17.
Sales of the electric car during the last financial year dropped to 1200 units in FY ended in 2018 as against 2000 units sold in FY ended in 2017 which is a decline of 40%. The lack of charging infrastructure and awareness around electric cars is one of the big reason for the decline. However, more procurements of electric cars by corporates, cab aggregators and by the government will see this number going up this year. Mahindra Electric is the only company in India to currently sell electric cars in India Mahindra e2o Plus and Mahindra e-Verito. Tata Motors also has started the production of its electric Tigor from its Sanand plant but is being supplied only as a part of EESL tender.
Electric two-wheelers dominated by electric scooters is driving growth in EVs in India. SMEV says that 54,800 units of electric two-wheelers sold in India at a growth of over 138%. e-Scooters score big on affordability and make a good business sense for small distance commute. Two-wheelers giants including the likes of Hero MotoCorp and TVS Motor Company have invested heavily in EVs.
Electric cars in India is still an expensive proposition thanks to high battery cost and none of the cars offers a range of over 120 km. These cars cost more than the standard ICE cars and take around 6-8 hrs for a full charge. The Government of India is yet to roll out the FAME 2 policy in India which has been pending for a very long time. Electric Vehicle makers have also asked GST council to drop 8% GST rate of EVs and further subsidise components to make EVs more viable. Global automakers including the likes of Nissan, Audi, Mercedes-Benz at many occasions have confirmed its plan to bring in electric cars in India.
Maruti Suzuki has already commenced testing of its electric car in India and Hyundai's electric Kona SUV will make its India debut in 2019. The future will be electric with the amount of work being done the rising pollution and also to reduce the oil import bill. However, the government has still not taken any bold and aggressive steps for faster adoption of EVs or hybrids in India.