One of the world’s largest automobile manufacturers SAIC’s India subsidiary MG Motor plans to replicate the sales dream run of its SUV Hector with its first electric offering — ZS EV — slated to be launched in December. The company faces several challenges such as high input cost, absence of charging infrastructure and acceptability in a price sensitive market like India.
On the price front, the company will depend heavily on its Group’s globally successful strategy of bulk purchase of batteries and other parts from the likes of CATL, which is one of the world’s largest producers of lithium-ion batteries.
However, recent GST tax brakes on e-vehicles and their components should aid the company to lower the car’s cost which is speculated to be in a price range of around Rs 25 lakh. Besides, low penetration and acceptability of e-vehicles is another issue which the company will face.
In order to create a hype, the company plans to deploy a limited number of ZS EV in India, even before the car’s official launch, MG Motor India’s President and MD Rajeev Chaba told IANS. “The MG ZS EV will be introduced in India in December 2019. Its retail sales will begin soon thereafter,” Chaba said.
“As part of our commitment to sustainable mobility, we are currently focused on enhancing public awareness around EVs and creating a well-integrated charging infrastructure for our future customers.” As per initial plans, the company will deploy the limited number of ZS EV units for giving select customers a unique experience ahead of launch.
“A limited batch of MG ZS EV cars could be made available to select customers to try out and experience ahead of the full commercial launch as part of the awareness building programme. We are still chalking out the details,” Chaba said without divulging details about the plan.
Furthermore, the automaker’s fast-charging infrastructure at limited locations will be in place by October. “We have tied up with leading EV charging players like Fortum to install 50 KW fast-charging stations across select locations by October this year,” he said. The compact SUV ZS EV will have a full-sized boot and room for five.
Recently, the company’s first product in India — SUV Hector — was sold out for the year with 28,000 bookings. The company plans to increase production of the Hector to 3,000 units per month by September this year. At present, MG Motor, a British carmaker now owned by SAIC. The company’s India subsidiary has commenced manufacturing operations at its plant at Halol, Gujarat. (IANS)