- 27 февраль 2019
The company has reengineered its existing internal combustion engine cars Tigor and Tiago with an electric powertrain and is now working on an electric vehicle (EV) based on its new-generation Alpha platform. It will be unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show in March.
The first EV for personal buyers will hit the Indian roads in 2020, which may be a Tigor EV, followed by a highly aspirational car based on the X451 premium hatchback.
Almost all the electric cars sold in the country by Tata Motors and Mahindra & Mahindra have found buyers among fleet operators and leasing companies.
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“The primary market for electric vehicles will be fleets in the next 4-5 years. But we want to attract personal buyers, too,” said Shailesh Chandra, president of the electric mobility unit at Tata Motors.
“If aspirational electric vehicles for personal buyers are not made available, consumers might start stigmatising EVs as vehicles only for the fleet purpose.”
Having delivered 250 cars in phase I, the company is in the process of delivering the second phase of 4,800 Tigors to Energy Efficiency Services (EESL).
Based on studies conducted by the company, Tata Motors has identified that lack of charging stations, driving range and higher costs had been impeding the adoption of EVs. Chandra said a range of 220-250 km on a single charge is ideal to address the buyer’s concern.
Given the falling cost of batteries, he said, the EVs for fleets can make business sense within a couple of years and it may take 4-5 years before they become mainstream with personal buyers and hence it is necessary for the government to extend support to EVs.
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The company wants to take a ‘micro-market’ approach and has chosen 20-25 cities based on criteria like pollution levels, sales potential, level of government support and demography, Chandra said.
Though it will take its cars to other markets as well, the company will first zero in on the selected markets to develop EV ecosystems with public charging infrastructure and other easy-owning options like leasing, Chandra said. Tata has half-a-dozen electric vehicles, including the commercial vehicles, ready in its portfolio. Three of these are in production.