NEW DELHI (Reuters) – Indian ride-hailing firm Ola Electric plans to start producing electric cars in India in 2024 with a range of up to 500 km (310 miles), Chief Executive Bhavish Aggarwal said on Monday.
Ola, which is backed by Japan’s Softbank Group and currently makes e-scooters, did not give an investment figure or production target.
Aggarwal said that while companies like Tesla are leading the way in building electric vehicles (EVs) more suited for Western markets, India can lead in the area of small cars, scooters and motorbikes for which global demand is higher.
Ola plans EV ecosystem
Ola’s electric car with the most advanced features would go from 0 to 100 km per hour (62 miles per hour) in four seconds, he said.
The company was setting up an electric vehicle ecosystem, aiming to produce cars, two wheelers and batteries all at a single plant in the state of Tamil Nadu, he said.
The company has sold over 70,000 electric two wheelers in the last seven months, and was in the process of setting up 100 hyper charging electric stations in major cities in India, Aggarwal said.
Ola had planned to go public in the first half of 2022, but the initial public offering has been postponed, possibly due to volatility in the market and lacklustre listings of some start-ups in India this year.
Volkswagen/Mahindra expand EV cooperation
In related news, Volkswagen AG and Mahindra & Mahindra on Monday expanded their cooperation and signed a term sheet under which the German carmaker will supply electric components to its Indian peer.
The agreement covers components of Volkswagen’s open platform for EVs, called MEB, to be supplied to Mahindra’s new electric platform INGLO, the companies said.
The INGLO platform, which will power all of Mahindra’s EVs, offers options ranging from 60-80 kilowatt hour (kWh) battery capacity and fast-charging of up to 80% in less than 30 minutes, Mahindra said, without specifying the range of the EVs.
(Reporting by Manoj Kumar, Christoph Steitz and Chris Thomas; Editing by David Goodman, Susan Fenton, Ludwig Burger, Maria Sheahan, Krishna Chandra Eluri and David Evans)