Responding to recent media reports which claimed that the government officials are refusing to use the Tigor EVs due to its limited range, Tata Motors has clarified few things.
The company said that based on their interaction with the customers and EESL, the range is not a major concern. The EV has been designed after intensive consultation of experts, however, it had to strike an optimum balance between meeting the daily running requirements of the end-users and most importantly, price accessibility.
Tata Motors said that the Tigor EVs supplied to EESL were in line with the specifications provided in the tender.
In India, 74% of the car buyers are still price conscious with a budget of Rs 400K-800K. For prices above Rs 1.5 million, the customers are limited. In such a scenario, the biggest barrier to adoption of electric cars is price of the car itself, and battery cost is the key variable determining the same. The specification chosen by EESL helped in keeping this aspect under control, while choosing a range, which was good enough for the city use, the company said.
Research findings shows that average running for a personal use in a day is around 50-60 km. Therefore, with an overnight charging, a range of 130 km is more than adequate to meet the daily requirement. Also, with a fast charging network, the range concern could further be taken care of. A higher range of 250 km and above would mean battery cost of more than Rs 700k, which would take the electric cars price completely inaccessible for majority of the Indian customers at the prevailing Li-ion battery prices.
In future, as the battery prices keep coming down, it is an imperative to increase the range for bringing further mental comfort to the consumer. The technology to deliver higher performance and range is available, but the country has to take a conscious call to whether prioritize price accessibility in the next few years, or create high performing and extended range cars with, most probably, a lower demand due to higher price, added the company.
“In the coming years, we will introduce products with higher range and performance to bring greater excitement in the Indian market for electric cars. Apparently, the price of such cars will be on the higher side driven by battery capacity and cost.” – Tata Motors