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Is Electric vehicles business still in nascent stage in India?
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Written by Murali   
Wednesday, 17 November 2010
The first electric bike was on Indian roads by this middle of this decade.

In less than a decade, India has now more than 100 e-bike companies as per ARAI stats.

E-bike component manufacturers started evolving now-a-days keeping the future prospects.

Association of Small and Medium electric vehicle manufacturers started.

Online information portals exclusively for EVs like EVHUB

Despite the market reach and popularity, still Electric vehicle business is in nascent stage. Why?

Insensitivity of the OEMs to local component manufacturers :
These days there are lot of local players invested to manufacture various electric bike components to support EV companies in India. For instance, Mumbai based Crompton Greaves ltd, Coimbatore based Edison semiconductors pvt ltd, Gujarat based Rotomag India are producing e-bike hub motors and controllers. Exide, Luminous started supplying deep discharge batteries. Despite this development, Indian EV makers are still fascinated about importing and selling in India.

Lack of proper government standards and regulations for electric bikes
Government has to amend the standards for the electric bikes to attract the prospective customer. Currently the unlicensed category bikes have less than 250W power which is practically incapable of overcoming the Indian road irregularities. If this is the case, how can a customer get excited to buy this bike? So, our government has to rethink, amend, and implement new standards and concessions to promote this technology as CHINA did.

Poor after sales service from OEMs
This is another important point which is turning off the customer. As most of the companies are importing in CKD (Completely knocked down) kits and also reluctant to buy from local companies, after sales service is worsening these days. Atleast 60% of the customers are unhappy with the service attitude and this has to go down. To achieve this, OEMs has to transform their attitude to customer centric and work hard to achieve the good will.

Lack of investment on marketing and advertising :
Currently many of the EV companies are out of cash due to various reasons. Hence no one is motivated to invest in promotional activities. But as EV is new to Indian customers, it needs some creative advertising and marketing practices to motivate them to buy and use.

End customer Illiterate to Electric vehicles
Almost 90% of the prospective customers are illiterate to electric vehicles. Nobody understands the technical aspects and proper usage. Hence there are some electric vehicle information portals EVHUB.IN, EVHUB.BIZ and EVFUTURE.COM who are sharing the product information, educating technical aspects, reviewing EV products, discussion forums for end customer and ready to answer their queries. If we can solve the above issues, Electric bikes market would have boomed by this time and we will be able to say it a growing business and not nascent.

ABOUT AUTHOR:
MURALI KRISHNA U; Masters in Electrical Machines more than 8 years Experience in development of Brushless DC Drives for Electrical Vehicles and Consumer Applications. Internet Entrepreneur, Blogger and Technical Columnist in electric vehicles, electric bikes and electrical engineering.
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