Economic Times Auto reports that the electric two-wheeler sales under the FAME II government backed programme crashed by 94 per cent over first six months of the current financial year. Policy changes gave customers the opportunity to opt for more affordable models.
Roughly 3,000 electric two-wheelers were sold via Phase II of the (FAME) Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles initiative between April and September this year. However, 48,671 electric two-wheelers were sold during the same months last year.
Mr Sohinder Gill, Director General of the (SMEV) Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles said that sales of two-wheelers under the FAME II scheme had fallen drastically. He also said that while subsidies have reduced with the government backed initiative, products on which incentives were being offered are costlier, pushing buyers towards affordable, low-speed alternatives.
The smaller capacity, low-speed electric scooters feature smaller Lithium-ion batteries, are priced lower, have lower maintenance costs, ergo making them ineligible for subsidies and benefits under the FAME II scheme. Roughly 49,000 low-speed electric two-wheelers were sold during the fist half of the current financial year.
Electric two-wheelers that feature a minimum speed of 40kmph and range values of 80km per charge qualify for the subsidies and benefits under the scheme. This requires for the vehicle to house a bigger battery that adds to the higher costs.
A low-speed electric two-wheeler is currently available for between Rs 50,000 and Rs 60,000, while a high-speed vehicle costs over Rs 75,000 (all prices are ex-showroom, India). In addition, battery replacement costs stand at roughly Rs 45,000 every four years.
The Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles feels that these replacement products could have been made available for roughly Rs 40,000 if the government continued to allow subsidies and benefits for the low-speed electric scooters.
SMEV also fells that the need to re-certify vehicles in order to qualify for the subsidies and benefits resulted in longer wait periods, a sudden halt in production and has directly resulted in a poor sales of electric two-wheelers.
Thoughts About Sales Of Electric Vehicles Crashing Because Of The FAME II Scheme
Well, here we go again. The government of India keep proving that they are really a confused lot. Or may be its just the internal politics and bribing that eventually makes the decisions. Here's an industry that need all the help it can get form the country's leadership, but the government seems to be concerned and worried about votes and who stays in power. We hope things sort out for Mr Gill and his boys.