All charged up: Tamil Nadu’s ambitious new EV policy is filled with sops to encourage purchase of EVs and the setting up of charging infrastructure across the state | Photo: Economic Times

Tamil Nadu exempts road tax for all commercial EVs under new EV policy

Tamil Nadu has decided to charge zero road tax for all categories of commercial EVs, and will double the exemption for private electric car owners from 50% to 100%. The new policy also stresses the need to use clean energy for charging infrastructure, and units will be set up along the state’s highways every 25km.

India: No ban on conventional vehicles, Centre mulls GST rate cuts instead

India’s government has now clarified that it will not ban any conventional automobiles to boost EV sales. Conventional vehicles sales are currently undergoing a severe slowdown and Union minister Nitin Gadkari has instead proposed that their GST rates may be lowered to help automakers attract more buyers. The announcement seems to be a reaction to urgent pleas by automakers to help revive their sales, and could be an indication of the government falling back on its bullish, pro-EV stance. 

BASF ties up with French firms for li-ion battery recycling

Germany’s chemicals giant BASF will tie up with France’s Eramet & Suez to begin operation on the ReLieVe lithium ion battery recycling project from January 2020. BASF estimates that up to 50,000 tonnes of EV batteries may need to be recycled across Europe by 2027 and 500,000 by 2035 — and BASF would help in the partnership by producing newer and better cathode materials. Suez would be tasked with dismantling used battery packs, while Eramet is slated to recycle their components.

Blistering fast 800V Taycan by Porsche goes one up on Tesla

Porsche has doubled the operating voltage in its all-electric Taycan from 400V to 800V, which enables the car to be recharged from 5% to up to 80% in a mere 22.5 minutes. The technology is a major upgrade as running on 880V makes the car lighter by using less wiring, and its motors run cooler due to lighter draw on current. The car does, however, need Porsche’s 350kW fast chargers — which is much more than even Tesla’s topline superchargers (150kW).

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