India's initial ambition on going green was a bit of a stretch when the government decided that all of the cars in the country would be all-electric by 2030. It was later, however, thankfully rectified to 30% all-electric vehicles by the same deadline. With targets like these to meet, car manufacturer both Indian and foreign are tightening their belts with plans to launch new electric cars. And so is the government. The Ministry of Power launched the National e-Mobility programme in March last year under which an all-electric car fleet was rolled out comprising of Mahindra e-Verito and Tata Tigor EVs, with an aim to replace the government's existing fleet of petrol- and diesel-powered vehicles.
The National e-Mobility programme will enable India's entire electric ecosystem that includes electric vehicle manufacturers, charging infrastructure development companies, fleet operators, service providers, etc. While some state governments have already started testing all-electric transport vehicles, here's what you can look forward to for personal electric transport alternatives.
Mahindra first unveiled the eKUV100 during the 2018 Auto Expo in February promising that it will go on sale in India by June 2019. Mahindra is currently the only car manufacturer in India which commercially retails electric cars - the E2O Plus and e-Verito.
The manufacturer will follow the eKUV100 with the launch of the all-electric version of the Mahindra XUV300 in 2020. It is expected that the new e-KUV300 will offer a much better range on one full charge and more premium features in comparison to the eKUV100 as well. The two will be manufactured at Mahindra's production facility in Chakan.
Tata Tigor Electric
Tata Tigor electric was also unveiled during the 2018 Auto Expo, along with Tata Tiago electric as first of a long line of EVs that will follow. Tata Motors won a bid from Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) last year under which the manufacturer will supply a total of 10,000 units of Tigor EV. Hundreds of these cars have already been supplied to EESL.
Both Tata Tigor EV and Tiago EV draw power from the same 3-phase AC induction motor with a peak output of 30kW at 4,500rpm or about 40 horsepower, with a range of about 140 km on one full charge. Expect the Tigor EV to be priced at about Rs 10 lakh.
Nissan Leaf boasts of a 270 km range on one full charge, thanks to a 40 kWh battery. The electric motor produces 148 bhp and 320 Nm of torque. The car also gets a fast charging option through which 80 percent of the battery is charged in about 40 minutes. Reports on the internet suggest that the Nissan Leaf will come with a bigger 60 kWh battery pack in the year 2019 that will result in a longer range. The exact range has not been specified yet, but expect the new model to deliver close to 350 km.
Hyundai Kona Electric
Slated to launch in India in July 2019, Hyundai Kona Electric will be assembled in the country at Hyundai's Chennai plant. The South Korean car manufacturer has confirmed that the Kona ELectric SUV will be priced under Rs 30 lakh. Hyundai Kona SUV will be sold only in top-10 metro cities before expanding further. Hyundai Kona is not the only electric vehicle in the company's product line-up. It also the electric and hybrid version of its Ioniq brand on which the Kona is based upon.
Audi will be launching its luxury electric SUV, the e-Tron, in India in the coming year. Audi E-Tron is now a lot closer towards production. It is powered by two electric motors with 90 kWh battery pack. The powertrain generates a maximum power output of 590 hp allowing 0 to 100 km/h sprint time in just 3.5 seconds. The GT concept accelerates from 0 to 200 kmph in 12 seconds and the top speed has been restricted to 240 km/h in the favour of a generous range of over 400 km