Mahindra and Mahindra (M&M), a pioneer in electric cars in India, is going to further expand its electric vehicles (EV) portfolio with the launch of an EV by next year and another by the end of the calendar year 2019. According to the company, both of these will be electric variants of existing products. Pawan Goenka, managing director of M&M, had earlier confirmed that the company will launch an electric variant of its compact SUV KUV100 in a year’s time. The second product in the pipeline will be developed by its Italian premium car design firm Pininfarina. The product, however, is not being planned for the Indian market. Goenka said, “The product with Pininfarina will not be aimed at the Indian market as it will be a high-price product. If we get demand here, we will launch in India. But it is generally aimed at global markets.” Goenka was talking on the sidelines of an event to announce M&M’s partnership with Uber India to deploy electric vehicles for use as cabs. The pilot will begin with “a few hundred” cabs in Delhi and Hyderabad in a matter of three to four months.
Goenka said, “As the pioneers of electric vehicles in the country, we would like to be at the forefront, leading this change toward smart and sustainable mobility. Our collaboration with Uber is an important next step to help accelerate the large scale adoption of electric vehicles on shared mobility platforms, and meet the nation’s vision for EVs.” This news comes on the heels of an announcement that Tata Motors and Jayem Automotives would tie up to deploy electric variants of the Tata Nano on the Ola platform. Due to the EESL (Energy Efficiency Services) order win, where M&M will be supplying 150 eVerito sedans for the first phase, and the tie-up with Uber, Goenka said that a ramp-up will be required of its current EV production.
M&M has a capacity of 500 units per month for EVs, and it plans to double the capacity to 1,000 in six months time, and to 5,000 units in two years. M&M currently has four models in the electric vehicle space, the e2o hatchback, eVerito sedan, eSupro van and the recently-launched three-wheeler eAlfa. M&M is now planning to bid for the second phase of the EESL order, where it is entitled to bid for 4,750 units of electric sedans. M&M’s bid for the first phase was costlier by Rs 2.35 lakh per unit than the bid by the lowest bidder, Tata Motors, at Rs 11.2 lakh per sedan. With the Uber deal and the EESL bid, M&M hopes to increase its EV sales. It sold 600 units during the first seven months of this financial year.