Maruti plans electric car, in talks with partner Toyota

Varun Aggarwal Mumbai | Updated on January 08, 2018

Maruti Suzuki, the country’s largest carmaker, is finally trying to catch up with its peers by entering the coveted electric vehicle (EV) space, according to people close to the development.

The development is part of Suzuki’s partnership with Toyota, which was signed in February and involves cooperation in technology development and mutual supply of products and components.

“The partnership will essentially look at setting up an electric vehicle platform.

Work has already begun but the final details are still being discussed. The first product could be a few years away,” the source said.

Mahindra & Mahindra is India’s only passenger vehicle manufacturer, and already has two electric vehicle models in production.

Tata Motors, which is yet to launch its first EV, is also making rapid strides — last week, the company won an order from Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) to supply 10,000 EVs, which would be a variant of its recently launched Tigor sedan.

This mad Maruti Suzuki the only Indian car manufacturer without an EV plan until now.

Global shift

The development at Maruti Suzuki is influenced by both local and global developments. While the Indian government has set out an ambitious target to have only electric and alternative fuel vehicles by 2030, China plans to mandate that a percentage of cars sold in the country from 2019 will have to be ‘new energy’ vehicles.

Similarly, several European countries are planning a ban on petrol and diesel vehicles in favour of electric cars.

Toyota, which so far has refused any plans to sell any electric cars in India, last week announced a new electric car venture called EV C.A. Spirit, in collaboration with Mazda and parts supplier Denso. The move is expected to hasten the development of electric cars for both the car companies. Suzuki is also expected to join the alliance with a minority stake, according to reports.

Maruti did not respond to queries from BusinessLine.

Published on October 03, 2017

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