On the mushrooming of electric vehicle startups, Rajiv Bajaj had this to say
Rajiv Bajaj, the Managing Director of Bajaj Auto, took aim on Friday at the exploding number of electric vehicle (EV) startups and a series of recent fires in some EVs, questioning the underlying manufacturing process.
Mr Bajaj, who spoke at the inauguration of Bajaj Auto’s wholly-owned subsidiary Chetak Technology Ltd’s dedicated electric vehicle manufacturing facility in Akurdi, said that people who have no business in the EV business are attempting to enter it.
“The issue is not the fire itself. This (such incidents) happened in the vehicles with internal combustion engines as well. The issue is the underlying process of the manufacturing,” he said.
“The problem isn’t with the fire itself. This (and other similar incidents) have also occurred in vehicles powered by internal combustion engines. The problem is with the manufacturing process itself “he stated
He also mentioned that “what concerns me more is the environment that has promoted this mad whole rush. Why are people who have no business to be in the business of EVs trying to get into the business? This must be fixed. Maybe, if I can say so, the relevant authorities in the government have diluted norms for EVs.” It (EVs flooding the market) may partly be because of the incentives as well, he said.
You can bring any chunk of vehicle from anywhere and put it on the road under the guise of low-speed vehicles. You’re not going to let these scooters catch fire? “What are you expecting?” he inquired.
Mr Bajaj stated that the company has kept its promise to commission this project by June, and that this focused, integrated, and agile facility will power the Chetak’s return to the future.
“Chetak is the original ‘Make in India’ superstar, and he has won hearts all over the world.” “The electric Chetak is born out of our strong R&D, deep understanding of products and consumers, and decades of manufacturing expertise,” Mr Bajaj said, referring to the company’s designed-and-built-in-India roots.
This new EV manufacturing facility will cost Chetak Technology Ltd and its vendor partners nearly 750 crore. The 5-lakh annual capacity two-wheeler production plant, which is spread across 6.5 acres of land, is aimed at both domestic and export markets, according to the company.
In October of this year, Bajaj reintroduced its iconic Chetak scooter in an electric form. Since its launch, the company claims to have sold over 14,000 Chetak e-scooters and received over 16,000 reservations. The company’s Akurdi facility, which includes a state-of-the-art R&D centre, aims to become a major hub for the design, development, and manufacturing of electric vehicles.
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