Between Tata Motors Commercial Vehicles and Warren Buffet backed BYD Electric Vehicles, 9 out of 10 of the first round electric public transport tenders have already been spoken for leaving local players like Mahindra and Mahindra, Eicher Motors and JBM Solaris empty handed and slightly red-faced if not anything else. With competitors even terming Tata’s bids as unviable, with other bidders claiming that the two quoted almost 30% lower than the market price. Although those who went home with tender rights seemed to be more than happy with the price on offer.
BYD for those who are wondering are in the country as part of a JV with Goldstone Infratech, and for those of you who are just hearing the name BYD. It is ia chinese EV supplier that is one of the few being backed by Warren Buffet and has been touted as China’s answer to Tesla. The new company in on JV has bagged contracts for Bengaluru, Mumbai and Hyderabad to supply 290 electric buses.
Meanwhile Tata Motors, took the remaining tenders by storm seizing the rights Jaipur, Indore, Lucknow, Kolkata, Jammu and Guwahati — to supply 190 e-buses. Ashok Leyland bagged a paltry contract for 40 e-buses in Ahmedabad. The 10 cities called tenders in the last two months in a pilot programme partly.
However, the contract with the most gravitas is New Delhi with an order for more than 700 electric buses on offer.However, the winners of this tender will be announced shortly. Now this smorgasbord of orders coming out of states for electric buses and public vehicles comes as part of the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of (Hybrid &) Electric Vehicles in India (FAME India) scheme, which provides 60% subsidy to cities to procure e-vehicles either as outright purchase or on supply-operate basis.
Tata Motors probably have played averages in their bid with the lowest bid going to West Bengal at Rs 77 lakh per bus for a 40-bus outright purchase contract placed by West Bengal Transport Corp for Kolkata. Tata placed bids varying between Rs 77 lakh and Rs 99 lakh for different zones. “The price quoted by Tata Motors is an unviable number for many original equipment manufacturers (OEMs),” Reported the competition to ET.“The Rs 77 lakh bid was a desperate attempt from the company after they lost to Goldstone-BYD in Karnataka,” the person alleged , speaking on condition of anonymity.