Mobilising change? Delhi and Telangana are the latest Indian states to unveil their EV policies as efforts to increase demand and supply gain momentum | Photo: Saur Energy

Delhi and Telangana formally adopt EV policies

The Government of Delhi has finally notified and adopted its EV policy, under which 25% of all new vehicles sold in the city by 2024 will be electric. The policy has also notified per kW subsidies for battery packs—₹5,000/kWh—and purchase incentives for different vehicle categories, such as ₹30,000 for two-wheelers and ₹150,000 per four-wheeler for the first 1,000 units. The draft of the policy was first notified in 2018 and is one of the government’s key tools to fight the city’s chronic air pollution. Dialogue and Development Commission vice-chairman Jasmine Shah asserted that the policy will be rolled out over the next three months and that efforts were being made to ensure that subsidy amounts will be reflected in bank accounts within seven days of purchase.

The state of Telangana, too, has notified its EV policy, which includes purchase incentives for all vehicle categories, but also aims to attract an investment of ₹30,000 crore. The money will be used in establishing an energy park at Divitipally, to attract EV manufacturers to set up their facilities in the state and generate 1.2 lakh new local jobs.

Incidentally, the sale of EVs has shot up by 23% in Hyderabad (the state capital) over 2019 as customers are increasingly choosing to buy EVs for their subsidised prices and lower costs of ownership. The reduction in their GST rates, from 12% to 5%, has also been touted as helpful. 

India’s new regulation on battery-less EVs puzzles manufacturers 

India’s Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has issued a new circular, under which EVs can be sold and registered nationwide without their battery packs. The move is aimed to de-link the cost of the battery, which could cost up between 30 – 40% of the vehicle’s price, and therefore enable a cheaper upfront purchase cost. It also does away with the Central Motor Vehicle Act’s (1989) stipulation that an electric vehicle and its battery pack be tested together for certification. 

However, the circular has puzzled EV manufacturers as under the Centre’s FAME II policy, all EV subsidies are linked to the type and capacity of their on-board batteries. The new directive thus contradicts the mechanism established to determine the quantum of subsidy for each EV. 

Single charge Hyundai Kona EVs hypermile past 1,000 km

Korean car manufacturer Hyundai has reported that its unmodified Kona electric compact SUVs have driven over 1,000km on a single charge in a simulated test in Germany. The test was conducted with the cars’ air conditioners and media systems turned off to minimise battery consumption. Each of the three test cars had a 64kWh battery pack and over the 35-hour test window, averaged speeds between 29-31 km/hr. 

Yet, the results indicate that the Kona EV offers impressive range, and its future iterations could come close to the 1,000km mark under more realistic conditions. The current “hypermiling” record stands with the Tesla Model S, which ran for 1,078km on a single charge—but on a larger battery.  

Europe to take on China in quadrupling global EV battery manufacturing capacity by 2030 

A new Wood Mackenzie report says global EV battery manufacturing capacity will quadruple by 2030 to reach 1.3TWh (terawatt-hours), with China, and the Asia Pacific region in general, accounting for nearly 80% of the growth. China’s capacity is expected to more than double—from 345 GWh in 2020 to 800 GWh in 2030 as even foreign manufacturers, such as LG Chem, SK Innovation and Samsung SDI (all from South Korea) have now become eligible for Chinese government subsidies.  

However, the report says Europe’s capacity, too, is expected to rise from 7% of the world’s share at the moment to around 25% by 2030. This will be as a result of new gigafactories built by Sweden’s NorthVolt in Sweden and Germany. Interestingly, China’s CATL is also planning to build a gigafactory in Germany, while LG Chem will expand its facility to Wroclaw, Poland.

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