Crying FAME: Tata's opposition to Tesla's cars receiving reduced import duties may be technically correct under FAME-II, but the two are unlikely to ever tap the same customer base | Photo:

Tata opposes import duty cuts for Tesla

Tata Motors has opposed Tesla’s application to India’s central government, under which the import duty on its vehicles would be lowered by up to 40% to make them affordable to a wider customer base. Tata Motors manufactures India’s best-selling electric car, the Nexon, and its opposition is based on the reasoning that the demand goes against the FAME-II scheme’s tenet of supporting the growth of India’s EV market through localisation. However, Tesla’s cars are likely to be much more expensive than the Nexon and would only cater to a small percentage of buyers. 

Meanwhile, four of Tesla’s vehicles received homologation certificates from India’s transport ministry, although the model names have not yet been released. 

Toyota to target only 10% EV battery degradation over 10 years 

Toyota Motors announced that it would spend $13.5 billion through to 2030 to build EVs, and that it would invest in research on solid state batteries that would only lose 10% of their rated capacity over an operational life of 10 years. The announcement comes as part of Toyota’s public relations campaign around its conceptual bZ4X vehicle, through which the carmaker is exploring ways to slash EV battery and overall vehicle costs by as much as 50%. 

The targets are, however, contrary to recent reports that have uncovered deliberate attempts by Toyota — or at least its North American division — to stall the continent’s progress on EVs, since Toyota has invested billions of dollars into developing hydrogen fuel cell vehicles instead. 

India: EV manufacturers asked to give discounts to customers scrapping old cars

India’s Union minister for transport Nitin Gadkari said the country’s EV makers should offer significant discounts to buyers who scrapped their old IC engine cars, although the reasoning behind the statement remained unclear. The central government had announced a new vehicle scrappage policy for the country in its budget session earlier this year, under which owners scrapping their private vehicles that were more than 20 years old — and commercial vehicles older than 15 years — would receive a monetary payout as an incentive towards buying an EV. The reaction from EV manufacturers is not yet clear. 

Odisha announces EV policy, sets out 25% subsidy to set up charging stations along highways 

The Indian state of Odisha announced its EV policy, which sets out incentives for electric two-wheelers, three-wheelers and four-wheelers to spur adoption. The policy will be valid for five years and targets 20% EV sales by 2025. It also includes a 25% state government subsidy for energy operators to set up EV charging stations along state and national highways, and a Rs.5000 grant for the first 20,000 private charging points. Uniquely, the policy will reimburse 100% of the state GST incurred during the purchase of batteries at swapping stations, and the state will explore coordinated EV battery waste management. 

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