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Government defers implementation of EV Battery safety norms

The Amendments to EV battery testing standards: AIS-156 and AIS-038 (Rev 2) will now be implemented in two phases.

Government defers implementation of EV Battery safety norms
The Amendments to EV battery testing standards: AIS-156 and AIS-038 (Rev 2) will now be implemented in two phases.

The Road Transport & Highways Ministry has deferred the EV Battery safety norms which were to be implemented from October 1. The measures are seen as steps for OEMs to be better equipped to comply /implement the provisions prescribed under the standards .

The Amendments to EV battery testing standards: AIS-156 and AIS-038 (Rev 2) will now be implemented in two phases.

The first phase will take effect from December 1, 2022 and the second phase will be effective from March 31, 2023.

AIS-156 and AIS 038 (Rev 2), Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has decided to implement the Amendment 3 of the said AIS, as hosted on Ministry’s website, in two phases.

The EV battery Safety norms were discussed in the light of the spate of EV fires during the summer months. Experts believe that more stringent norms would have a higher safety threshold that needs to be met. These regulations are seen as means to set minimum standards that have to be adhered to by everyone.

These new requirements are seen as ways to ensure that batteries need to adhere to uniform standards.

The standards are based on recommendations of the expert committee report. The amendments are expected to cater to specific requirements for motor vehicles with less than four wheels with electric powertrain and electric powertrain of motor vehicles  with at least four wheels used for carrying passengers and goods.

Considering the fact that 22 of the most polluted cities in the world are in India and taking into account India’s COP26 commitment of net zero by 2070, these standards once implemented are seen as triggers to boost EV adoption.

Welcoming the decision, Sohinder Gill, Director General, Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV) said, “There has been an acute shortage of good quality battery assemblers in India, forcing some of the manufacturers to even import batteries for their spares and non-registered vehicles by paying much higher duties. The new regulations, if implemented w.e.f. Oct 1 would have brought the EV industry to a grinding halt. The standards laid down by the government are very important and they will further enhance the safety quotient of the products. The proposed standards necessitate changes in battery design. Hence, the extension of the timeline will allow manufacturers to work on new designs and development and do rigorous testing to ensure effective implementation.”

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