We can observe a metastasis from vehicles with internal combustion (IC) engines to the ones equipped with electric motors at the international arena. Meanwhile, this change in the air towards electric mobility was witnessed in India as well, with top brands releasing a fleet of electric cars and hybrids in the past couple of months. Due to this, Tata Nexon EV, Hyundai Kona Electric, Mahindra e2oPlus, and other electric cars adorn the Indian market now.
EVs and E Mobility
Electro Mobility, Electric Mobility, or simply e mobility refers to using electric vehicles, hybrids, and hydrogen-powered vehicles in transportation.
So what exactly is an electric vehicle? In an Electric Vehicle (EV) the electric motor runs by utilizing the electricity stored in its battery. Here the electric motor does everything an internal combustion engine in a gas-powered car does. The battery of the EV is charged from time to time. While All-Electric Vehicles (AEVs) run solely by means of electricity, Hybrids have a combustion engine in addition to an electric motor.
Electric Mobility in India
By 2030 India is aspiring to reach the vision of 100% Electric Vehicles. But the government’s will to make a complete transformation to EVs will require tremendous changes from the base level onwards.
Consequently, the government should take steps like increasing the market permeation of EVs. The country should also herald in a good policy environment and concentrate on reducing production costs on a large scale. If India can successfully accomplish these, full electric mobility might not be much of a challenge to the country.
Now we should look at the pros and cons of e mobility.
Enormous technological advancements are taking place in the electric vehicle industry. EVs have overcome their erstwhile shortcomings and newer models are better than bygone counterparts. There are plenty of reasons why you should go for the EV option.
Putting The Environment First
Electric vehicles do not produce any emissions. This making it easier for the country to follow through with its obligation towards the Paris Climate Agreement. Electric mobility can go a long way in reducing air pollution in urban areas. Electric motors are relatively quiet compared to IC engines. Thus EVs have the potential to address noise pollution as well.
EVs nowadays have become much more affordable than before. Moreover, the cost of servicing, upkeep, and maintenance of an electric car has foundered significantly. Since electricity is more economical than fuel, EVs are relatively cost-effective.
Eligible for Tax Cuts
Besides, the government has also taken steps to encourage the use of electric vehicles by granting reductions on motor taxes. Likewise, by providing subsidies and other incentives on EVs the government is trying to promoting sustainability.
Easy To Care For
EVs require very little maintenance compared to IC cars. The battery and motor do not need regular attention. Besides lesser fluids used would mean a lot less intermittent maintenance.
Can Reduce BoP Deficit
The enormous automobile industry of the country survives on foreign oil. According to the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell, in the financial year of 2019-20 alone India imported crude oil worth 120 billion dollars. Switching to electric vehicles can reduce fuel consumption and can in turn overcome India’s balance of payment (BoP) deficit.
As much as we would like to be the ardent advocates of electric mobility, we cannot ignore the challenges they come with. Take a look at some of the disadvantages of e mobility.
Range Might be a Problem
Unlike gas-powered vehicles which usually come with good mileage, EVs have comparatively shorter ranges. They are best suited for driving in the city and are not appropriate for longer drives. Shorter ranges can become a serious problem out on the highways or on a country road. Moreover, the range of the battery would also drop in chilly weather conditions.
Inaccessibility of Charging Stations
Charging stations might not be available everywhere you go. A country like India has huge stretches of rural lands where you cannot find any charging stations for your car. In a situation like this, electric mobility would not be ideal for all spaces and circumstances. Travelling long distances through suburban areas would not be possible in an EV.
Greater Manufacturing Costs
In India, higher production expenses come mostly from using imported inputs. The perpetually depreciating Indian Rupee means that we would have to pay more to buy inputs from abroad. With local production or by using technologies like 3D printing, this problem could be solved.
Could be Expensive
Investment in R&D and technological breakthroughs have made it possible for many companies to offer their electric vehicle at affordable prices. But for the huge part, EVs are still relatively expensive and would garner a hefty initial investment by the buyer. Again cutting the cost of production can come a long way in finding a solution to this.
Lack of clarity in government policy can act as an impediment to the growth of this industry. Goods and Services Tax for EVs are high. The government should take better initiatives to further the production and use of EVs.
The Future is Here
Everyone is in love with the status quo. Electric car manufacturers would have to go an extra mile to get people to make the switch from regular cars to EVs. For EVs to be the go-to car for people, it should be at par with the conventional fossil fuel cars people are used to. Electric cars should be everything a car with an internal combustion engine is and more.
2021 is giving us hope for ushering in a new era of electric cars. Top auto companies are set to launch their new line of electric cars next year. Mahindra’s eKUV100, XUV300 Electric, Tata Altroz EV, and others pair affordability with convenience making electric mobility and the future closer to us than we think.
You can also read Mahindra Launches MESMA 48 platform for light Electric Vehicle here