Union power minister Piyush Goyal recently said that the government is looking at having an all-electric car fleet by 2030 to reduce fuel import bills and running costs of vehicles. He also added that not a single petrol or diesel car will be sold in the country by then. To this effect, the government is offering subsidies to those customers who buy electric and hybrid vehicles. Meanwhile, the Nagpur Municipal Corporation has taken a new project with a similar aim and will be introducing India’s first all-electric taxi fleet in the city this month.
Although Union minister Nitin Gadkari had earlier told PTI that the trial phase for these electric taxis will begin in Nagpur from May 24, it has been delayed by two days and will now start from 26 May to celebrate the third anniversary of the Narendra Modi-led government. The minister also said that Mahindra and Mahindra would provide 200 taxis for this project, and that the government wanted to start the project early but couldn’t due to difficulties in setting up charging stations. Also, the government has to make several amendments to the current rules as electric taxis cannot be classified by the cubic capacity (cc) like regular taxis.
Mahindra hasn’t confirmed the type of vehicles it will provide for this project. However, it is most likely to be either the e-Verito or the e2o Plus. The e2o Plus has a 210Ah battery and a driving range of 140km while the e-Verito has a 200Ah battery with a 110km range. Under the FAME (Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of hybrid & Electric vehicles) scheme, both the cars attract huge subsidies from the government. While the e-Verito attracts an incentive of Rs 1.38 lakh while the e2o Plus is cheaper by Rs 1.24 lakh. The e-Vertio and the e2o Plus cost Rs 9.5 lakh and Rs 5.46 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi), respectively.