Mahindra Electric, India’s biggest electric three-wheeler manufacturer, will launch at least four new products, including a product in a new category over the next three years, as it looks to further build on its leadership position.

New electric three-wheelers for passenger and cargo — having better range and payload capacity — and an electric quadricycle are in the launch pipeline of the company, per a top executive.

Suman Mishra, CEO, Mahindra Electric Mobility, said, “We are planning to launch 4-5 new products in the last mile mobility category in the next three years — different payload, different range, better technology.”

Mahindra Electric may have to increase manufacturing capacity at its assembly plant in Bengaluru as result.

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The Bengaluru-based company today launched the electric Treo, a passenger electric three-wheeler, in Maharashtra at ₹2.09 lakh (ex-showroom, Mumbai) post FAME-II, State and early bird subsidies.

While the Treo is a fixed battery electric three-wheeler, Mahindra Electric is planning a swappable battery solution to be had in the next generation of products.

Quadricycle segment

Next year Mahindra Electric will foray into the quadricycle segment with the launch of the Atom — a four-door commercial passenger vehicle — to become the second company to enter the segment after Bajaj Auto.

“The Atom should be launched next financial year. It does not enjoy the FAME benefits (as of now) and because of that, we are working on how to give the right value proposition to the customer. It was included into the PLI scheme. I could get the product into the market much faster if it gets FAME benefits where we are talking about a subsidy of ₹1 lakh,” Mishra added.

Covid impact

The passenger three-wheeler segment has been one of the worst hit segments of the Indian automotive industry due to the pandemic.

With offices shut down and schools closed, the business proposition of this segment collapsed overnight. But with the gradual normalisation of the economy, three-wheeler demand has started to rise once again.

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“The passenger three-wheeler segment has not recovered at all compared to the pre-Covid levels. We are presently at 30 per cent to those levels. Cargo three-wheelers are better at 70 per cent. Hopefully, in the next year or two, we will see the numbers back to pre-Covid,” Mishra added.

Rising demand

Within the three-wheeler segment, electric penetration was quite low last year but has increased significantly this year. According to Mahindra Electric, from the 2 per cent last year, electric three-wheelers now make up 7 per cent of the entire three-wheeler demand basket and it is expected to rise to 30 per cent by 2025.

Mahindra Electric claims a market share of 67 per cent in the electric three-wheeler segment.

It operates through a network of more than 200 dealerships across 450 districts. It is hoping to increase the dealership count by 30 per cent next year.