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Take measures to fast-track India's EV dream: Pawan Goenka

Take measures to fast-track Indias EV dream: Pawan Goenka
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To push e-mobility, reduction in prices of electric vehicles by OEMs, priority financing by banks and NBFC at a lower rate and duty cut on certain parts, is needed, says M&M MD, Pawan Goenka

New Delhi: Automobile major Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M) on Thursday said India's electric vehicles dream is not far from realisation but it needs steps like priority financing and duty reduction on certain parts to push e-mobility in the country.

The company, which sells various electric models like e-Verito and e2O, said that with more manufacturers like Tata, Hyundai, MG Motors and Maruti Suzuki coming in the segment, there will be more acceptance of electric vehicles (EVs).

While stating that the government has done its bit to help e-mobility, the company said it was time for manufacturers to work towards reducing EV prices in order to make it viable for personal usage even as new business models in the shared mobility space proving it to be a sound proposition. "Government has done what needs to be done. Electric vehicle dream is now not very far and with many players coming in, Tatas have announced their vehicles, Hyundai have launched their Kona, MG has announced their EV and Maruti has talked about its EV as well, with that we will see more and more EVs coming in," Mahindra & Mahindra Managing Director Pawan Goenka told reporters here.

This certainly will make it more acceptable when we see many more products on the road for public to start using EVs, he added. Goenka further said it was now up to the companies to take it forward in order to make e-mobility affordable. "OEMs (original equipment manufacturers) need to reduce prices of electric vehicles by 8-10 percent. We are working on it. Reduced prices would help in better offtake of such vehicles," Goenka said.

Commenting specifically on Mahindra, he said the company would like to reduce the price of e-Verito to around Rs 11 lakh from Rs 12 lakh currently. "To achieve that, we are focusing on localisation and also with cell prices going down, it should help. Right now, there is 5 percent duty on import of cells, if that can be reduced then there can be a reduction of at least Rs 20,000 in vehicle price," he said.

Highlighting the current challenges faced by the EV sector, he said that one of the major hurdles is in financing as banks and non-banking financial companies (NBFCs) are reluctant to give loans as they are not sure about the resale value of EVs.

"At present, interest on loans for electric three-wheelers are 5-6 percent higher than those of diesel or CNG vehicles. If we can have priority financing for EVs at a lower rate, it will help accelerate growth of the segment," Goenka said adding that electricity charges at a lower slab for charging would also help.

Outlining Mahindra's strategy in the electric segment, he said the company would be focussed on shared mobility space over the next few years.

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