Hyundai, which is India's second largest automaker, will launch its first electric vehicle (EV) in 2022. This includes sports vehicles (SUVs) and sedans.
Tarun Garg, director of sales and marketing for Hyundai Motor India, said this EV will be both affordable and premium.
“We want to be a major contributor to the EV story in India,” Garg told Reuters on Wednesday (12/8/2021).
The investment will be put into research and development to launch the six vehicles, Hyundai India said in a release. Hyundai will later join rivals Tata Motors and Mahindra & Mahindra in this project.
Garg said Hyundai's EVs will either be built on a dedicated electric global modular platform (E-GMP), which it plans to bring to India, or on a modified platform from where it builds its petrol cars.
Cars built on a dedicated electric platform will have a range of up to 800 kilometers (497 miles), while others will be able to go 350 to 400 kilometers (217 to 249 miles) on a single charge.
Hyundai in 2019 had launched its Kona EV in India but its sales were not satisfactory due to the high price and poor charging infrastructure. Garg says Kona gave the idea to make EVs affordable, while providing a different charging solution.
Hyundai is in talks with suppliers to source locally and manufacture components for its EVs, which will help make the car more affordable. Apart from providing home chargers, Hyundai is also looking to form a strategic bond to provide public charging facilities, Garg said.
“Kona is testing waters off India. The lessons from that have given us the confidence to make this push,” he said.
Tighter emissions regulations by governments are encouraging automakers globally to invest in EVs, whose sales are expected to increase to about a quarter of total global vehicle sales by 2030 from around 2% today.
In India, EVs account for less than 1 percent of total car sales, but the government is targeting a 30 percent share by 2030.
Hyundai's plans come as the world's largest electric carmaker Tesla Inc is preparing to launch an EV car in India. It is known that Elon Musk's company has lobbied the government to lower import duties on EVs.