Electric vehicle sales in India have reportedly recorded a growth of 20 per cent to 156,000 units in the financial year 2019-20, largely driven by the sales of electric two-wheelers that form bulk of the nascent industry.
Of 156,000 units, electric two-wheelers sales accounted for 152,000 units during the fiscal, up 20.7 per cent from the last year, while electric cars accounted for 3,400 units, down from 3,600 units in the year ago. Electric bus sales were 600 units compared to 400 units in the financial year 2018-19.
Of the electric two-wheelers sold in FY20, 97 per cent were electric scooters, and the remaining 3 per cent were motorcycles and electric cycles.
Industry body Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicle estimates the e-rickshaw sales at around 90,000 units during the FY20. The corresponding figures of the e-ricks sold in the previous year have not been documented, it said.
"The EV industry is taking shape and we believe that despite the COVID19, the FY 20-21 will be a defining year for all the EV segments. While the EV industry is surely going to face the brunt of COVID19 like any other automotive business, the clearer skies and the cleaner air even in the worst polluting cities is certainly leaving a permanent impression in the minds of the customers about how they can breathe easy and remain healthy if the society moves towards e-mobility," said Sohinder Gill, Director General, Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles.
The decrease in the number of electric four-wheeler sales was primarily due to the lack of bulk purchase of e-cars during the fiscal and discontinuation of one of the leading e-car models – Mahindra e2O plus. Nonetheless, SMEV pointed out that the acceptability of electric cars in the premium segment in the second half of the year with the launch of Hyundai Kona and MG ZS was positive. The e-taxi segment also started gaining some attention, although the lack of charging spot remained a deterrent.
Gill also said, "A pertinent factor that may work in favour of electric two-wheelers post-COVID would be the choice of switching over from crowded mass transport to the sensibly priced electric two-wheelers with almost the same cost of commuting, as of public transport."