Tata Motors chairman N Chandrasekaran said on Friday the company will soon start producing electric vehicle (EV) batteries in the country as the intention of getting into the battery space is very strong at the Tata Group.
Though he did not share details, Chandrasekaran said, “We are not going to be limited in the journey towards EV leadership by what is required in terms of capital, in terms of talent and in terms of a robust supply chain.”
He was speaking while unveiling the company’s AVINYA concept car.
By a robust supply chain, he also implied local manufacturing of semiconductors, the shortage of which has negatively impacted the global and Indian car industry.
“We are already into precision manufacturing, such as Titan Company that produces high-precision products, and manufacturing of semiconductors is something we are looking at actively,” Chandrasekaran said.
Shailesh Chandra, managing director, Tata Motors, passenger vehicles, and Tata Passenger Electric Mobility, told FE that Tata Motors currently imports certain components of an EV battery, such as cells, and assembles the battery pack locally.
“We also assemble modules, and are in the process of indigenously developing the battery management system. In fact, a lot of things that go into making a battery pack are being localised, but the cell will take some time. The good thing is the government is also actively involved in this, with steps such as the ACC-PLI, so there will be a capacity that will be developed over time,” Chandra said.
The cell is one of the most important parts of an EV battery.
Tata Motors also launched its born-electric pure EV architecture, on which only EVs will be developed, on Friday. The first car on this architecture will be launched in 2025. The AVINYA concept car, built on this architecture, will have a driving range of more than 500 km on a single charge.
“While the government aims to have EV sales accounting for 30% of private cars by 2030, we are aiming higher,” Chandrasekaran said. “We have made tremendous progress in Generation 1 and Generation 2 EV architectures, and today we are unveiling Generation 3 for the world.”
The carmaker has termed its existing EVs as Gen 1 — those that were developed from internal-combustion engine (ICE) cars, such as the Nexon EV and Tigor EV. Gen 2 cars will be launched in 2024, and will be developed first as EVs and then as ICE vehicles; the Curvv concept SUV showcased earlier in April is a Gen 2 car. Gen 3 cars will be only electric.
“We will go global with our Gen 3 cars,” Chandrasekaran said. “We are benchmarking global cars with this one (the AVINYA), and that’s why we will focus on global markets, in addition to India.”
On the AVINYA, he said the central idea is to offer a mobility solution like no other. “It’s a state-of-the-art software-on-wheels that is well-designed, sustainable and reduces the planet’s carbon footprint. Green mobility is at the nucleus of our electric mobility division, and the AVINYA Concept is a reflection of what the company stands for — a creation that will not only accelerate the adoption of EVs, but also lead this movement,” Chandrasekaran said.
“Further, at the Tata Group, we are uniquely positioned to bring all the expertise that is necessary to build these mobility solutions and are confident that in the years to come we will make a larger and sustainable impact not only in India but globally as well.”
AVINYA is a Sanskrit word that translates to innovation.