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Electric Vehicle Industry in India: Jobs, Opportunities & Incentives

Electric Vehicle Industry in India: Jobs, Opportunities & Incentives

Table of Contents

The electric vehicle industry in India is a growing industry. The government has launched incentives to promote electric mobility opportunities in the country. There are challenges over the lack of charging infrastructure and lack of electricity produced from renewable energy. E-commerce companies, car manufacturers, and app-based transportation companies have started building up the electric car ecosystem in India. E-Mobility players in India include Hero Eco, Ather, Electrotherm, Avon, Lohia, Ampere, etc.

Support from Govt. of India

Government of India targets 30% electric vehicles by 2030

The Automobile sector contributes 49% to India’s manufacturing GDP and 7.1% to India’s GDP. The 2nd AMP (Automotive Mission Plan) released by the government outlines the plan to elevate the Automotive Industry to world class levels.  As part of Paris agreement in 2015, India committed to reduce the emission intensity of its gross domestic product (GHG emissions per unit GDP) by 33% – 35% over 2005 levels by 2030.  In order to meet its global commitment and mitigate adverse impact of the automobiles (ballooning oil import expenses and increasing air pollution), the Government is keen to shift the narrative towards electric vehicles. The electic vehicle market in India is expected to be valued at $2bn by 2023.

Three-wheeler segment: Expected to be valued at $1 bn by 2030 and penetration of 63% by 2025

With battery costs declining faster than anticipated, EV economics become favorable as battery costs decline; the five year TCO becomes favorable over any alternative in most markets. Additionally, consumers benefit from financial (e.g., subsidies) & non-financial incentives (e.g., road access, registration privileges).

Four-wheeler: Expected to be valued at $700mn by 2025 and penetration of 25% by 2025

Charging Stations

 Charging stations do not need a separate licence under the Electricity Act of 2003 as of April’18

Demand Creation

An outlay of INR 10,000 cr has been made for FAME-II over 3 years till 2022. INR 8597 cr has been set aside for incentives and INR 1000 cr has been kept for charging infrastructure

GigaWatt Cell Manufacturing Plan in 2019

The Government of India is working on a GigaWatt Cell Manufacturing Plan. This plan is currently underway and it seeks to invite 50GWH of cell manufacturing capacity in India by 2025.

Charging as a Service:

Ministry of Power has issued a notification clarifying a clause in the Electricity Act 2003 that charging for the purpose of charging an electric vehicle is classified as a service and that no licence is required for this business activity.

Two-wheeler segment: Expected to be valued at $200 mn by 2023 and penetration of 34.5% by 2025

Union Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari stated today that, he believes; “India will be a manufacturing hub for electric vehicles within the next five years, adding that several countries do not want to deal with China after the COVID-19 crisis, which can be an opportunity for India.

China has so far been on top in terms of electric vehicle production in the world with it producing over 80 percent of all EVs globally. The country has the fourth largest reserves of lithium in the world hence giving it a monopoly in the lithium-ion cell market.

India unveiled the ‘National Electric Mobility Mission Plan 2020’ in 2013 to address the issues of National energy security, vehicular pollution and growth of domestic manufacturing capabilities. Reiterating its commitment to the Paris Agreement, the Government of India has plans to make a major shift to electric vehicles by 2030.

The Government has released a two-pronged strategy aimed at both buyers and manufacturers, in which it offers $1.4 billion in subsidies to buyers, while imposing a hike on import tariffs to increase manufacturing of these vehicles by domestic companies. The Government is mainly focusing to electrify public transportation as the subsidies, mainly available for two-wheelers, three-wheelers, and buses. This policy also earmarks $140 million to develop charging infrastructure which should further help the development of the EV industry in India. On 14 December 2018, the government also released a document which outlines the standard and guidelines for EV Charging infrastructure. Beyond the specifications of the charging infrastructure, the guidelines also required a charging station to be present every 25 km along a road/highway.

Energy Efficiency Services Limited (EESL) is procuring 10,000 number of Electric Vehicles from reputed manufacturers for distribution to Government Departments on rental model and upfront sale model. EESL’s tender of 10,000 number of EV’s has reduced the cost of EV’s substantially.

National Electric Mobility Mission Plan, 2020

The National Electric Mobility Mission Plan, 2020 was launched by the Government of India in year 2012 with the aim of improving the national fuel security through the promotion of hybrid and electric vehicles. Auto industry contributes 22% to the manufacturing GDP. From the help of new Manufacturing Policy, contribution of manufacturing in overall economy will increase to 25% by year 2022.

Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric vehicles (FAME)

The Government started Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric vehicles (FAME) scheme which provides incentives for purchasing electric vehicles. Phase I of the scheme lasted from 2015 to 2019, while Phase II began in 2019 and is planned to be completed in 2022.

Government is releasing tenders to increase charging infrastructure in the country. The scheme offers incentives to the electric and hybrid vehicles ranging from Rs.1,800 to Rs.29,000 for scooters and motorcycles and Rs.1.38 Lac for cars. FAME is a part of National Electric Mobility Mission Plan by Government of India.

Go Electric campaign

The government launched the Go Electric campaign in the start of 2021 to encourage the adoption of electric mobility vehicles and electric cooking appliances and to ensure energy security in the country. Road Transport and Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari launched the campaign, saying Go Electric is a future for India that will promote low-cost, environmentally friendly and indigenous electrical products. He expressed concern about the huge cost of importing fossil fuels and said CO2 emissions from transportation vehicles are a major challenge. The country must encourage the use of vehicles that run on alternative fuels such as electric batteries, CNG and biofuels.

Delhi

The Delhi Government recently approved 1,000 low floor AC Electric buses to be used in Delhi’s public transport system. Buses have CCTV, Automatic Vehicle Tracking System (AVTS), Panic buttons and Panic alarms. Subsidy given by government is up to Rs 75 lakh or 60% of cost of bus, whichever is lesser.

Tamil Nadu

Tamil Nadu chief minister Edappadi K Palaniswami launched Mauto Electric mobility’s electric autorickshaws – touted as India’s first retrofit electric autos in India in 2019.

Dubai-based KMC group and Mauto Electric Mobility will convert petrol-run autorickshaws into electric vehicles with an investment of Rs 100 crore and offer job opportunities to 5,000 people. KMC group and Mauto Electric Mobility signed a MOU during chief minister’s stopover in Dubai during his three-nation trip in September. The MoUs were signed at an event hosted by the Business Leaders Forum (BLF), an initiative of UAE’s ministry of economy and the Indian Embassy in the UAE. The state government recently gave necessary clearances for the units to start the venture.

“The driving range per full charge of three hours will be 100 km. The aim is to introduce 4,000 electric rickshaws in the city, 100 by a month to reduce air pollution to a large extent. The autos are fitted with CCTV surveillance, panic button and television. It is highly safe for children going to school and women,” said Mansoor Ali Khan, chairman, Mauto group of companies. Mansoor, chief executive officer of MAuto Group, said the petrol-driven autorickshaws would incur an expenditure of Rs 350 – Rs 400 for every 100 km, while it is Rs 40 for electric autorickshaws.“ The retrofitting of autorickshaws will cost only Rs 1.2 to Rs 1.5 lakh. We are ready to convert the
vehicles registered after 2000,” he added. The company is planning to set up charging stations in each of the ten zones of the city. Charging on the go will be possible with the help of a mobile app.

Karnataka

Karnataka approved Electric Vehicle and Energy Storage Policy 2017.[22] It aim to attract investment of Rs 31,000 crore and create around 55,000 employment. The union government has unveiled its vision to make country all-electric vehicle market by year 2031 to reduce dependency on fossil fuels and reduce its carbon footprint.

Maharashtra

The Maharashtra Government is focusing on increasing EV use in the state by proposing to exempt EV’s from road tax and providing a 15% subsidy to the first lakh EV’s registered in the state. To improve suitable infrastructure, the government proposed to provide a maximum subsidy of Rs 1 million (~$15,549) per charging station up to first 250 charging stations that are set up in Maharashtra.[23]

Uttarakhand

In 2018, the Uttrakhand Government introduced a new scheme to help the manufacturing and promote the use of EV’s as well. The scheme would provide companies with loans ranging between Rs 10 crore and Rs 50 crore to build EV’s and charging infrastructure. The scheme also doesn’t charge motor tax for first lakh customers of EV’s for five years.

Standards

Charging

From left to right: CHAdeMO (IEC62196-3 IEC 62196-3 configuration AA, DC), Combo2 (IEC 62196-3 configuration FF, DC), and Type 2 (IEC 62196–2, AC). A common socket can be used for Type 2 (AC) and CCS Combo 2 (DC)

AC charging

IS:17017 specifies Bharat EV Charging standard AC001. It uses 15 A, 230 V, 3.3 kW, and an IEC 60309 connector. Electric vehicles can be charged using a regular 220V – 15 A household supply that delivers around 2.5 kW power. There is no policy or standard defined for at-home EV charging. Bharat EV specifications recommend the installation of a Residual Current Circuit Breaker to ensure safety and using an IEC 60309 Industrial connector, but a 3 pin 15 A plug could also be used. For higher power AC charging (~22 kW), Type 2 connectors are specified. The advantage of Type 2 connectors is that, they can use three phase AC power for charging.

DC charging

The public DC Charging Standard is DC 001. It uses custom GB/T for EV-EVSE communication over CAN mode. It uses 200 A, 15 kW, and a GB/T 20234 connector. Maximum DC O/P Voltage is 100 VDC. There is very few cars in market with this standards like Mahindra e-Varito, Mahindra e20 and Tata Moters e-Tigor. The IS:17017-1 published by BIS in August, 2018 recommends CCS-2 (Combined Charging System) and CHAdeMO protocols for high power fast charging.The advantage of CCS over CHAdeMO and GB/T is that it uses Power Line Carrier Communications (PLCC) for EV-EVSE communication while CHAdeMO and GB/T use CAN. PLC allows secure communication using encrypted messages and the link can support higher data-rate as compared to that by CAN.

Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE)

The IS:17017 standard published by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS) covers general requirements and safety norms for EVSEs.

Central Management System (CMS)

The Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) 1.5 or higher over the internet is to be used.

Benefits of electric vehicles

  • Electric vehicles are around 3-5 times more efficient than internal combustion vehicles in utilising energy. Even if electric vehicles run on electricity produced from fossil fuels, the overall efficiency of electric vehicles is still higher and the pollution is less, because large thermal power plants are much more efficient than IC engines, and it is easier to control emissions from power plants than vehicle engines.
  • Electric vehicles save energy by regenerative braking. Around 30%-70% of the energy used for propulsion can be recovered, with higher percentages applicable to stop-and-go city driving.
  • Air quality indices related to India indicate that the air in many cities of India is no longer healthy. Automobile related pollution has been one of the causes for this.
  • Aspects related to global warming needs a shift to automobile solutions that reduce / do not produce greenhouse gas emissions. If electric vehicles run on electricity produced from non-polluting sources of energy like hydro, solar, wind, tidal and nuclear, they reduce emissions due to vehicles almost to zero.
  • The need to reduce dependency on a fossil-fuel based economy. India’s crude oil imports for 2014-15 was 112 billion dollars (approximately 7,00,000 crore rupees). For comparison, the allocation for the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, in budget 2017-18, is 48,000 crore rupees.
  • India can become a global provider for clean mobility solutions and processes that are affordable and scalable.
  • People living in some Indian cities are being affected by noise pollution. Some of the Indian cities have the worst noise pollution levels in the world. Electric vehicles are much quieter and may contribute to a reduction in noise pollution levels in the cities
  • Energy efficiency and emission reduction has improved in automobiles. Yet, the growth in total number of vehicles on road, and the resulting total pollution and total energy consumption removed al
    l gains made by betterment in energy efficiency and emission reduction by automobiles. Energy efficiency measures and pollution control measures did not keep pace with the sales growth in vehicles. The total number of vehicles registered in India has been 5.4 million, 11 million, 33 million, 40 million and 210 million in the years 1981, 1986, 1996, 2000 and 2015. This indicates 39 times percentage growth in the total number of vehicles between 1981 and 2015. The total number of vehicles sold in India increased between 1,54,81,381 in 2010-11 and 2,04,69,385 in 2015-16 indicating a 30+ percentage growth in this five year period.
  • Through smart charging, electric vehicles can help to balance the balance-supply variations in the electricity grid, and provide a buffer against electricity supply failures.
  • Electric vehicles have much fewer moving parts as compared to vehicles with IC engines. Thus, being simpler, they are cheaper and easier to maintain.
  • Electric motors can deliver high torque at low speeds. As a result, electric vehicles deliver much better performance while starting off and on slopes than IC engine-powered vehicles.

Challenges faced

Lack of charging infrastructure

Cumulative electric vehicles per million people

The charging infrastructure for electric vehicles in India has not been fully developed yet. For more details, see the section ‘Charging Infrastructure’ below.

Cost

The cost of EVs is very high mainly due to the cost of Li-ion cells. The battery packs are imported and cost a lot, about $275/KWh in India. This combined with the GST of 28% and the lack of lithium in India, further increase the cost of batteries. Most EVs in India provide a range of 110 km and cost between Rs 6-8 lakhs which does not give a cost advantage compared to higher range cars in the same price range.

Lack of renewable energy and grid infrastructure

In India electricity is mainly produced by burning coal, which produces a great amount of greenhouse emissions. With the introduction of EVs and charging infrastructure, the electricity demand will go up a lot and the whole point of introducing EVs to reduce GHG emissions would be ineffective, if all this electricity was produced by burning coal. Moreover, India’s Distribution companies hold debts and are unable to suffice the energy requirement of the whole country adequately. If EVs were to enter this equation, the sudden increase in electricity requirement would put extra load on these companies. Moreover, there are a lot of factors that would go into deciding pricing of the electricity as well the demand on the grid.

Charging infrastructure

The Government of India has declared public charging stations and EV charging businesses as a de-licensed activity. The government has laid down that there should be at least one charging station in a grid of 3 km x 3 km in cities and one station every 25 km on both sides of highways. This coverage is to be achieved in cities with a population of more than 4 million and all existing expressways and important highways connected to these mega cities by 2022. The second phase (3 to 5 years) will cover big cities like state capitals and UT headquarters. There have been initiatives to set up community charging stations, as in the case of Plugin India facilitated charging stations. News reports have indicated about plans to provide solar-powered charging points at the existing fuel stations of the country. There are companies like Tata Power, Fortum and others which are engaged in the business of electric vehicle charging. They have already installed all varieties of chargers – rapid DC chargers and level 2 AC chargers for all kinds of applications – public access, workplace charging, fleet charging, residential communities, malls, highways etc and have large plans to scale up.

Charging infrastructure, mainly setting up of level 2 charging at public level shall be the toughest challenge in terms of service integration for India. For normal charging, the charging time poses a serious problem as it ranges from 6 to 8 hours whereas for fast DC charging; cost & high renewable energy are the biggest factors which could pose a problem. It is also assumed that 10% of the charging infrastructure required in India shall be composed of fast charging station and rest 90% shall come from level 2 public charging setups. On 22 May 2018 Ather Energy launched its charging infrastructure service in Bangalore called Ather Grid, with each charging station called ‘Point’. The service is open to all electric vehicles but has been deployed where Ather plans to launch its own electric scooter.

Industry associations

  • Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers
  • Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV)
  • Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design

Electric vehicle manufacturers

Fully
electric cars

ISRO has tested a solar-powered hybrid car – modified Maruti Omni with a solar panel platform installed on top of the car. The installation of this solar platform on the car has been rated “awful” for its design.The Hyundai Kona electric has the highest range of 452(as per ARAI) km in a single charge among the electric cars available in India.

This is list of electric cars, motor cycles and scooters in India

Fully electric cars Motor cycles Scooters
Hyundai Kona Electric Revolt Motors (RV400 & RV300) Ather Energy|Omega Seiki Mobility (RAGE+)
Mahindra e-Verito Tork Motors (to be launched) Bajaj Chetak (Currently available in Pune and Bangalore)
Mahindra e2o Emflux Motors (to be launched) TVS iQube (Currently available in Bangalore)
Mahindra eSupro Earth Energy (to be launched) Simple Energy (Mark 2 to be launched)
MG ZS EV Ultraviolette Automotive Hero Electric Photon 48V
Tata Tigor EV 2019 (Only for Commercial purposes) Kabira Automobile Okinawa Praise
Tata Nexon EV 2020   Yakuza Rubie*
Mercedes Benz EQC   Lactrix Motors – Launched its scooter in Oct 2020
Extinction MK1 by Pravaig Dynamics (to be launched)   Evolet Pony
    Omjay Eeve
    Battre loev
    Battre loev gpsie [India’s first e scooter with gps]

Buses

Electric buses in Bangalore by BMTC

India’s first electric bus was launched in Bangalore in 2014. Ashok Leyland launched its electric bus in October 2016. Tata Motors launched its pure electric bus ‘Starbus Electric 9m’ and hybrid ‘StarBus Electric 12m’ in January 2017. Goldstone Infratech supplied Himachal Pradesh Transport Corporation with 25 electric buses in September 2017. 25 Tata Starbus Hybrid electric buses were delivered in Maharashtra in March 2018. India’s first intercity electric bus was inaugurated on 5 September which is operated between Mumbai and Pune by MSRTC November 2019, 133 Electric buses have been deployed across Pune city in the first phase of its e-bus programme.

Vans

As van segment is becoming popular in the country, Force motors has showcase the E Traveller and the T1N plateform in the auto expo 2020. Mahindra & Mahindra had also launch a minivan called eSupro based on Supro.

Heavy duty trucks, semi-trailer and tractor trucks

A Gurgaon based company, Infraprime Logistics Technologies Pvt. Ltd. launched first heavy duty truck (tractor-tipper-trailer combination) in India in Sep 2019. No other case of manufacturing and use of electric heavy duty trucks, semi-trailers or tractor trucks in India has been reported.

Rickshaws

Electric auto rickshaw in New Delhi

A Motor Ve
hicles (Amendment) Bill was passed by the Parliament in 2015, which established battery-powered e-rickshaws as a valid form of commercial transport in India. With their small size and small turning radius, E-rickshaw is already a popular mode of transport in Delhi-NCR, particularly in small lanes and congested areas.

Railways

Indian Railways has a long history of electric locomotives, with their first use in 1925. On 31 March 2017, government announced that the entire rail network in the country will be electrified by 2022. Indian Railways has successfully tested solar-panel mounted trains. Power generated from these solar panels will be used for the lights and fans inside the train.

Solar-electric boat

  • Aditya, from NavAlt

Conversion of old vehicles in to battery vehicles

  • E-trio Automobiles for Maruti Alto and Maruti Wagon R
  • Nothway motorsports for Tata ace gold

This is table for list of Mini pickup truck, Rickshwas and hybrid cars.

 
Cargo three wheeler Mini pickup truck Rickshaws Hybrid Cars
Omega Seiki Mobility RAGE+ Mahindra eSupro cargo

Lactrix Motors (Andaaz E Rickshaw) *

MAuto Electric Mobility

(First in India to introduce Retrofit EV

Vehicles in Auto rickshaw category)

Toyota Prius
Omega Seiki Mobility SUN-RI Tata Motors, Ace Electric in 2016 Entice Impex Pvt Ltd (Gatti E-rickshaw) Honda Accord Hybrid
Mahindra Electric Treo Zor Ashok Leyland, Dost Electric pickup truck Oculus Auto Toyota Camry
 

Croyance Automotive, ELECRO

1.t India first electric cargo light truck

Mahindra Treo MG Hector
    Kerala Neem G from Kerala Automobiles Limited Maruti Suzuki Ciaz
    Omega Seiki Mobility STREAM Maruti Suzuki Swift
    Omega Seiki MobilityRIDE Maruti Suzuki Ertiga
    Mahindra Electric Treo Mahindra Scorpio Intelli hybrid
      Maruti Suzuki Baleno (mild hybrid)
      Toyota Glanza (mild hybrid)
      Volvo XC90 T8 Excellence
      BMW i8

Hybrid car

Hybrid cars are available in various types depending upon its combination of power supply form battery and petrol. Below are some of the hybrid cars available in India:

Mobility solution providers

In 2015, Bangalore based Lithium Technologies launched a fully electric taxi service for corporates. In June 2017, Bangalore based logistic group Baghirathi Tr
avel Solutions is one of the EV fleet Transport company.

In January 2019, BluSmart Mobility launched an all-electric cab service in Delhi-NCR with a fleet of 70 Mahindra eVerito cars. It has plans of expansion to 400 cars by March 2019. Also, it has planned to set up a massive charging infrastructure comprising 65 stations. Each station will have the capacity to charge up to 20 vehicles at a time, with 20 charging points. The company has also ensured there will be a charging station within every five kilometre of radius. The company also has plans for Tata Tigor electric, Nissan Leaf, BMW i3 and Tesla 3 in their fleet. So far the company is running only 10 cars in Delhi NCR and not a single charging station has been installed. The promoters do not intent to increase number of fleets post automobile industry’s massive losses that has hit market as well as production values. The company raised funding from Deepika Padukone (Ka Enterprises), Micromax co-founder Rajesh Agarwal, Sanjiv Bajaj (Bajaj Capital MD), Rajat Gupta (former Global MD McKinsey) and Rohit Chanana (Ex-President Strategy, Hero Corporate Services) and various other VC firms.

Career Opportunities

Electric Vehicle Industry is a multi-disciplinary field and requires experts from different streams of engineering. Chemical Engineers are suited to work on battery chemistry whereas electrical engineers help in selecting the best motor for the vehicle. Professionals with cross-sectional expertise in chemical engineering, electronics, embedded software and electrical engineering are set to be highly sought after. This is the reason that Mechatronics Engineering, a multi-disciplinary branch is gaining traction when it comes to hiring fresh graduates for the EV industry.

A quick glance at job postings from various electric vehicle companies in India shows that EV  companies in India  are looking for engineers proficient in a variety of domains for job profiles in EV Safety, Software, Motor Calibration in vehicles, Power Electronics, Mechanical Design etc. 

On a broader level, different streams of engineering are required to accomplish tasks. e.g. if we talk about the ‘end of life’ management of vehicle batteries – Electrical, chemical and electronics engineers can all play their part in the process



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