Category Archives: Electric Vehicles

Auto Expo: A Brief Introduction

The Auto Expo is Asia’s largest biennial automotive show held in Greater Noida, NCR, India. Conceived in 1985 and making its debut in 1986 at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, the expo is focused towards introducing new technology, concepts, innovation and designs in the auto industry.

Jointly organized by the Automotive Component Manufacturers Association (ACMA), Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), the Auto Expo’s path-breaking debut show was a window for technology transfers representing how the Indian Automotive Industry was absorbing the new technologies and promoting indigenous research and development for adapting these technologies for the rugged Indian conditions.

Over the years, the show has only grown stronger. By 2006, it began to see huge overseas participation, with new concepts, launches, as well as trade dialogues. In 2008, it was accredited by the Organisation Internationale des Constructeurs d’Automobiles (OICA), cementing its reputation as one of the world’s most premier auto shows.

In 2020, the 15th Auto Show aimed to not only focus on the static display of motor vehicles but to also focus on the ‘Entire Mobility Eco-System’, enveloped by the theme of “Co-Create, Co-Exist and Celebrate”. Despite the slowdown in the Indian motor industry, the expo had several big brands take part in the event showcasing multiple new concept cars, with electric vehicles taking centre stage.

Today, the Auto Expo is eagerly anticipated by brands and fans alike.

Growth of Electric Vehicle Charging Stations in India

The growth of the electric vehicle industry in India directly depends on the availability or shortage of charging stations in the country. As part of the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles (FAME) India programme, the government has approved a plan to establish 2,636 charging stations throughout the country to further encourage the use of EVs and produce high adoption by 2030 in India.

According to this report, of the 2,636 stations:

  1. Rapid charging stations = 1,633
  2. Maharashtra = 317
  3. Andhra Pradesh = 266
  4. Tamil Nadu = 256
  5. Uttar Pradesh = 207
  6. Rajasthan = 205
  7. Delhi and Chandigarh = around 70

It is expected that at least one charging station will be available in most of the selected cities in a grid of 4 km x 4 km. Energy Efficiency Services Ltd. (EESL), an energy service provider owned by the Indian government is all set to collaborate with engineering group Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd. (BHEL) to build electric-vehicle charging stations throughout India.

Various community charging stations and businesses are taking on the initiative of increasing the accessibility of these stations. Tata Power established the first set of Electric Vehicle charging stations in Mumbai and are now present in Delhi and Hyderabad.

PluginIndia wants to popularize the concept of community charging stations with the idea for businesses/resorts/vacation homes etc, that are at a distance of 40-70 km around cities, to setup normal 15 Amp charge points or Smart EVSE for electric cars and next-generation electric bikes. Having successfully set up 257 Community Charging Stations across India, they have developed a mobile app by the community for the community, complete with Google Maps integration.

RE:CHARGE INDIA App Features

  1. Find electric vehicle charge points near your location
  2. Browse electric vehicle charge points on a Map
  3. Search for charge points
  4. View electric vehicle charge points details
  5. Get driving directions from your location to an electric vehicle charge point
  6. Call phone number directly from the app
  7. Report an electric vehicle charge point
  8. Add a new electric vehicle charge point

Get the App:
Android – Recharge India – EV Charging points map

App Store – RE:CHARGE

All of these efforts have one goal – that easier access would encourage more use; and the faster that EVs become a trend, the better for the environment.

Hybrid Cars

What is a hybrid car?
Hybrid cars are electrified vehicles that still use an internal combustion engine, which means combining a petrol or diesel engine with an electric motor. The main advantage of a hybrid is that it consumes less fuel and emits less CO2 than a conventional petrol or diesel-engine vehicle.

How do hybrid cars work?
Driving a hybrid is similar to driving an automatic car, so there’s little compromise on performance. A hybrid combines at least one electric motor with a gasoline engine to move the car, and its system recaptures energy via regenerative braking. Unlike an Electric Vehicle (EV) or Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV), hybrids also have a petrol or diesel engine to fall back on if the electricity supply is diminishing.

Types of hybrids:
There are three different types of hybrids and each work in a different way.

Parallel/Full Hybrid
This is the most common type of hybrid. A full hybrid is a car which can drive under its own electric power, petrol or a combination of both. They are sometimes called ‘parallel hybrids’. The car’s wheels can be powered in three different ways: either directly by the engine, by the electric motor alone, or a blend of the two power sources. The Toyota Prius is the most widely known example.

Mild Hybrid
A mild hybrid car cannot drive under electric power alone and doesn’t improve fuel economy to the extent that a full hybrid system can. The engine never drives the car; it only produces energy for the electric motor. The Honda Jazz r is one of the more popular examples.

Plug-in Hybrid
As its name states, this type of hybrid can be plugged into an electric outlet to recharge their batteries, as well as being charged on the move. It carries a much larger battery pack that must be fully recharged using an external electricity source from the home or public charging station. Popular plug-in hybrids include the BMW i8 and VW Golf GTE, with both cars having bigger battery capacities to enable a longer electric range.

Going Electric: Vehicles that are worth making the move

India has set a target of electric vehicles making up 30% of new sales of cars and two-wheelers by 2030. But the recent economic slowdown appears to have taken a toll on the electric vehicle plans. But the potential market is still huge, with India being the world’s biggest market for scooters and motorcycles; the next biggest market being China.

With the ever-growing pollution and bad air quality – and not to mention the continuous rise in fuel prices, more and more citizens are thinking about making the move to electric vehicles as they realize that going electric brings with it significant benefits; lower running costs, lower maintenance costs and pollution-free driving.

With manufacturers like Japan’s Suzuki Motors planning to launch an electric scooter in India by 2020, and Indian motorcycle makers Bajaj Motor and TVS Motor are also eyeing electric models, here are some existing models that are popular with consumers.

Okinawa i Praise
The scooter comes with a detachable lithium-ion battery that, according to the company, takes 2-3 hours to charge and gives a range of 160-180km. It is also equipped with features like geo-tagging, GPS, find my scooter, battery health and vehicle status, all of which can be accessed via an app on your Android smartphone.

Colours: Glossy Silver Black, Glossy Golden Black, Red Black

Revolt RV400
The Revolt RV400 is India’s first AI enabled motorcycle. It’s battery charges from 0-100% in 4.5 hours. In an all-new innovation, Revolt also offers four sounds in the motorcycle, all controlled through the MyRevolt App.

Colours: Rebel Red, Cosmic Black
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Ather 450
A Bangalore based startup, Ather Energy launched the Ather 450 electric scooter which promises an acceleration of 0 to 40 kmph in just 3.9 seconds, a top speed of 80 kmph and a range of 55-75 km. According to the company, the 450 was designed from scratch to offer an exhilarating ride and a hassle-free ownership experience. The electric scooter promises some great unique features like a low centre of gravity, mono-shock suspension, front & rear disc brakes and perfect balance and a reverse mode.

Colours: White

ULTRAVIOLETTE F77
Sporting a bold design, the Ultraviolette launched the F77 in three colour variants. The bike is currently on sale only in Bengaluru while online registrations to purchase the motorcycle have opened. Deliveries are slated to commence in October 2020. The F77 is powered by a 25kW electric motor which produces 90Nm, making it the most powerful electric motorcycle currently on sale in India. Ultraviolette has DC fast-charging capability, giving it 50 minutes to charge up to 80% and 90 minutes for a full charge.

Colours: Airstrike, Shadow, Laser