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View Poll Results: Are you concerned about battery replacement costs?
Yes 174 67.97%
No 82 32.03%
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Old 20th May 2022, 10:21   #1
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Default Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

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Everyone's going crazy about electric cars right now, and rightly so. This is the biggest game-changing technology we've seen in the automotive space in 100 years! EVs offer superb performance, refinement, 1 rupee / km fuel costs and low maintenance. Importantly, Tata & MG are building EVs that are relatively attainable. Others are working hard, including Maruti & Hyundai.

But I remain concerned about the life of EV batteries. Let's please not keep Tesla as a benchmark because Tesla competes at the higher end of the market, and that premium pricing gives it the freedom to choose the best-of-the-best batteries. Not only does Tesla have a close relationship with Panasonic, but there are also its gigafactories. Let's also not overlook Tesla's expertise & experience in EVs; they are fanatical about battery health.

I don't think the batteries under mainstream EVs will have the quality (and thus, durability) of Tesla batteries. IMHO, a lot of long-term EV owners are going to be in for a rude shock.

- Because EVs are just taking off in India, we have absolutely no information on battery life in the long-term.

- 8 year battery warranties are becoming common. What after that? Is it going to cost a bomb? Check out the E2O's battery price, despite being a much smaller unit than what we see today:
Quote:
Originally Posted by cool_dube View Post
A new e2o battery from Mahindra ASC should cost you somewhere around INR 4 lac. Please get in touch with Sireesh Auto, Singasandra branch for accurate figures and timelines.
Of course, point to note is that, as production increases, the price of batteries will go down.

- I don't think too many first-owners will be worried as most Indian owners generally replace their cars every 5 - 6 years. But people like us who hold onto cars for 8 - 10 years are going to be in for a nasty surprise, as are 2nd & 3rd owners of EVs.

- That said, if EV batteries indeed need replacement at the 7 - 8 year mark, it will greatly affect resale values. Hence, first-owners can get adversely affected too.

- I guess it's a roll of the dice. Some brands might be able to get healthy lifespans out of their batteries, while other OEMs won't. All ICE cars don't have the same long-term reliability & the obvious trend will continue with EVs.

- Unless batteries come cheap (even if used), we are going to see a lot of abandoned 10+ year old EVs (just like 10+ year old luxury German cars), because the battery replacement cost will greatly exceed the book value of the car.

- Opportunity: Aftermarket battery suppliers which give you a good battery for 1/3rd the price of the authorised dealer. But safety will be key here. No one wants to run around with a potentially dangerous battery under their car. On a related note, we can expect cheap Chinese batteries from unknown sources to flood the market.

- Even in the aftermarket, good batteries won't be cheap. I reckon the cost will exceed that of overhauling a petrol / diesel engine.

Last edited by GTO : 20th May 2022 at 10:29.
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Old 20th May 2022, 10:30   #2
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

This is one of the concerns I have with electric cars https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/elect...tric-cars.html (Concerns over the resale value of electric cars) . A friend who had bought E20 4 years back mentioned battery has gone kaput and car is resting in peace for last 6 months. Replacement cost is around 3L. While newer EV claim to have much better battery technology, they cannot perform like new forever. What happens after battery warranty expires? When buying used EV, will depreciation be higher because after 6 or 7 years, new owner will be looking at an expense of 5-10L to replace battery.

Last edited by PrideRed : 20th May 2022 at 10:42.
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Old 20th May 2022, 10:41   #3
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted NO. Mainly because I havenít got an EV!😅

But seriously. From what we see today EV batteries are lasting way beyond the 8 year mark already. Also, when do you want /need to replace a battery. Just because it doesnít hold as much charge as originally, when do you change it out.

As battery technology improves, the battery life will improve. E.g.a battery that gives you new 300 km range, might still be acceptable at 200 km range, that is only 66%. A battery with new 500 km range at 66% efficiency still gives you 330 km.

The 8 year mentioned is what EV manufacturer currently use a warranty.

A WARRANTY!

That doesnít mean it stops working after eight years! Those EVs will run for years after those 8 years.

Most current batteries are likely to last anywhere up to 10-20 years easily!

Have a look at this article which also makes some predictions on how much more the price of batteries is coming down

https://blog.evbox.com/ev-battery-longevity.

We are likely to buy are first EV in the next 4-5 years. By then I doubt this is an issue at all. And it probably isnít a real issue currently on most cars.

I think the biggest problem with new technology is we all worry way too much. And we tend to get stuck in rethinking and arguing around the initial shortfalls and problems. We should keep up with current state of affairs and look beyond it as well. Then all old initial problems and challenges will disappear.

I canít think of any new technology ten years after mass adoption that has any real concerns left!


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Old 20th May 2022, 10:44   #4
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted No. There are plenty reports of EVs with more than 100k miles (1.6 lakh km) on original battery. Quoting from an article here,

Quote:
As far as we know, the original battery pack had an issue after 290,000 km (180,000 miles) and was replaced under warranty. However, Tesla was initially figuring out the issue and installed a loaner battery, which was used for half a year or 150,000 km (93,000 miles). Then, Tesla installed a new, final battery. We don't have any info about any further replacements, so it might be the first 1 million km battery?
My Kona EV is close to 80k km now. Although battery was changed at 65k km, it was a part of a global recall as cars were a "potential fire hazard" (though no fires were reported in India) and had nothing to do with degradation as such.

I feel if companies weren't confident in their batteries they wouldn't have provided with 1.6 lakh km warranties, an industry standard now.
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Old 20th May 2022, 10:45   #5
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted: No

Batteries shouldn't die in 8 years. The battery should at most lose capacity by 15% in 8 years (1.5L km). Given the EV batteries have a to buffer 3 to 6% and the loss is essentially loss of top buffer. The actual loss of capacity should ideally be 10% in 8 years.

Depending on battery designs, some are easily repairable and FNG shops will come up that can swap out faulty modules. This is already happening with likes of Nissan Leaf. ZS EV modules are standard CATL modules and are available on certain trading websites. The current cost of replacing all modules by yourself will be about 4L

Of course, this is all under ideal conditions. I have been tracking SoH of many ZS EVs and the current trend of degradation isn't looking great.

Last edited by flanker : 20th May 2022 at 10:48. Reason: Added vote
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Old 20th May 2022, 11:31   #6
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Before we discuss the battery related arguments, I would like to flag the unconscious bias towards EVs vis a vis ICE cars.

- Do ICE cars lose performance with age? YES, they lose power with time, FE decreases and they pollute more as the engine enters 6 figures.

- Do ICE cars get abandoned? YES hundreds of thousands of abandoned vehicles litter all over India of various shapes, sizes and vintage. None of them due to a lack of LiIon batteries, but that's a government policy making gap.... hopefully rectified in the near future.

- Do ICE cars hit pockets with expensive repairs? YES. Keep Maruti aside and every other car maker has been regularly blamed either for exorbitant repair bills or reliability issues from day 1. Let's also not forget the fact that EVs incur far less servicing costs and intervals during their lifespan.

- Do ICE cars carry more 'fault prone' componentry? YES. Eg. Gearboxes (more so with the advent of more advanced auto boxes like dual clutch units), timing belt, chains, engines, filters, oil leaks etc...EVs have far less moving parts.

- Do older ICE cars end up higher repair bills than the cars worth? YES. Let alone zze Zermans, look at all the abandoned Escorts, Cielos, Astras, Corsas, Optras etc...etc..

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Attachment 2310169

Everyone's going crazy about electric cars right now, and rightly so. This is the biggest game-changing technology we've seen in the automotive space in 100 years! EVs offer superb performance, refinement, 1 rupee / km fuel costs and low maintenance. Importantly, Tata & MG are building EVs that are relatively attainable. Others are working hard, including Maruti & Hyundai.

But I remain concerned about the life of EV batteries. Let's please not keep Tesla as a benchmark because Tesla competes at the higher end of the market, and that premium pricing gives it the freedom to choose the best-of-the-best batteries. Not only does Tesla have a close relationship with Panasonic, but there are also its gigafactories. Let's also not overlook Tesla's expertise & experience in EVs; they are fanatical about battery health.

I don't think the batteries under mainstream EVs will have the quality (and thus, durability) of Tesla batteries. IMHO, a lot of long-term EV owners are going to be in for a rude shock.

Of course, point to note is that, as production increases, the price of batteries will go down.

- I don't think too many first-owners will be worried as most Indian owners generally replace their cars every 5 - 6 years. But people like us who hold onto cars for 8 - 10 years are going to be in for a nasty surprise, as are 2nd & 3rd owners of EVs.

- That said, if EV batteries indeed need replacement at the 7 - 8 year mark, it will greatly affect resale values. Hence, first-owners can get adversely affected too.

- Unless batteries come cheap (even if used), we are going to see a lot of abandoned 10+ year old EVs (just like 10+ year old luxury German cars), because the battery replacement cost will greatly exceed the book value of the car.

- Even in the aftermarket, good batteries won't be cheap. I reckon the cost will exceed that of overhauling a petrol / diesel engine.
The most important word we cannot ignore is 'Progression'.

- The argument assumes battery technology is stagnant. A rival manufacturer cannot catch up with Telas benchmarks of today, or Tesla not lifting the barriers further. Rest assured it is not, battery tech has come leaps and bounds over the last few decades. Imagine the power density and longevity gains batteries make each progressive year, its massive. Battery research currently is rampant, one of the biggest areas of R&D expenditure globally. If we get 8 year warranties today, imagine what it will be in 5 years? ICE progress is comparatively stagnant.

- EV Battery prices have literally crashed in the last decade. This is despite global mass scale production is still comparitively in its nascent stages.

- Battery recycling is a fast growing industry and the tilt is towards exchanging/monetising older battery packs.

- Localisation of battery manufacturing is just getting started in our country.

- In decade's time elongating the life of an EV with a battery swap will be far more straightforward, efficient, easier and will not need the TLC of an ICE car of comparitive vintage.
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Old 20th May 2022, 11:54   #7
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted: No

a) My Nexon EV comes with a battery warranty of 8 years, which is a LONG period of time in today's uncertain world. Why lose sleep on something that far ahead in time?

b) As already point out above, it is not that the battery is just going to die the very next day after completing 8 years. Sure, it will lose some capacity leading to some loss in range, which would certainly not render the car unusable.

c) The pace at which EV tech is progressing, I am sure I will have a plethora of inexpensive, hassle-free, and high-quality options to replace my Nexon's battery when the need arises (minimum of 8 years)

Last edited by cool_dube : 20th May 2022 at 11:55.
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Old 20th May 2022, 12:57   #8
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

I spend on an average 8000.0 per month on fuel (Petrol) and drive 56Kms every working day. That makes it around 1L per year on fuel. For 8 years, i would have spent on an average around 8L. So if i had an EV, probably i would have ended up spending around 1000.0 per month on charging and at the end of the 8 year period around 1L on charging. So with what i saved i.e 7L , i would not mind spending around 3.5L for a new battery.

Granted its not as simple as i have outlined and the real world experiences may be different but EVs make more economical sense than ICE IMO. As far as new battery cost is concerned, I would set aside a fixed amount every month in a RD and at the end of the 3 year period, there would be enough for a new battery. So I don't see where the cause for concern is?.

The real problem comes only when you don't anticipate the cost of new battery and get a stroke on hearing it. Of course, EVs depreciate much faster than an IC Vehicle and at the end of the 8 year period, your EV car is worth only 10% of the original price. So you need to make an informed decision on going for a EV.

Last edited by srini1785 : 20th May 2022 at 13:05.
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Old 20th May 2022, 13:09   #9
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted No.

8 years warranty from OEM instills confidence that the batteries would last the time. After 8 years, if I have to spends a few lakhs for a new battery, I wouldn't mind as I would have saved a greater amount on fuel costs. With a new battery pack, I also end up getting it's full performance restored.

That said, I would be wary of getting an EV if I have low running. The savings wouldn't justify the premium I pay for EV.
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Old 20th May 2022, 14:03   #10
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted NO.

Let me give an analogy argument. I purchased the VW Vento less than a year of it's launch, with abundant questions on it's long term reliability. I remember TeamBHP reviews back then putting forth similar questions on long term reliability.

I kept the car for 8 years. Around the 6th-7th year mark, post extended warranty period, the injectors went kaput. Had to plunk 1L extra for that. More expenses for other maintenance issues that came up but you get the draft. Could have stuck to 'safer' options of Maruti (SX4) and Hyundai (Verna) which offered a decent option but nowhere close to what the Germans were offering.

We have an well-accepted view on the forum saying if you go the German route, plan for some additional maintenance expenses in the longer run. I'd say that's the mindset one needs to have wrt EVs. Hope for the best (battery lasts well and replacement costs are reduced by then) but still plan for some additional hit in the end.
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Old 20th May 2022, 15:02   #11
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

I voted No.

Most car makers are shifting to LFP battery packs including Tesla for their low range models. BYD E6 has a LFP called the Blade battery due to its form factor, which has an 8 year 5,00,000 km warranty. Even after that, they still retain 80% capacity.

The batteries used in Tesla are NCA from Panasonic with special sauce from Tesla. But even off-the-shelf, Panasonic NCA battery can have a life up to 800 cycles when you use a slow charger and do not charge it to 80% SOC and do not discharge it to below 40%.

The same battery can have a life of just 200 cycles or less if you use fast charging all the time. Charging a battery with 1C or more is called fast charging e.g. charging a 50 kWh battery with 50 kW charge speed. To avoid that, one needs to charge the battery at 0.5C or in the above example, at 25 kW speed for a 50 kWh battery. In order to get the max life of 800 cycles, you need to charge at 0.4C of the rated battery capacity and at the same time, charge it only till 80% SOC or less.

Those who do only city runs and follow even stricter charging methods like charging from 40 to 60% or basically plus or minus 10% cycling around the 50% SOC can even get 1200 cycles.

Certain companies use the NMC type cells. These do not have a life of more than 600 cycles despite following the method mentioned above. These batteries are typically used in two wheelers which have a lower battery voltage but have a high power draw.

Cars have a much higher voltage pack (except the E2O and other Mahindra EVs). A typical made in India (not rebadged Chinese) two wheeler has a motor rating of 4 kW to 8 kW. So, when these come with a battery pack of 3 kWh to 5kWh, you are discharging the battery at 1C to nearly 2C. Remember volts x amps = watt.

So, with a typical system voltage of 50V to 60V, when you are using the full power of the motor during heavy acceleration, you need lot of amps. 50V x 100A gives you 5 kW of motor power. Given the limited space for batteries in two wheelers, if you use a NCA pack you will need two cells in parallel to get the same discharging power of NMC batteries. Let's take the best 18650 NCA batteries, the Panasonic 18650GA or PD (PD version used in early Tesla model S). These can discharge up to 10A vs an NMC battery like the Sony VTC6 or Samsung 30Q which can can discharge at 15A, with certain batteries like the Sony VTC5A / Samsung 25R going up to 25A.

Small appliances like cordless vacuum, power tools use those kind of cells.

This is not to say that all two wheelers only use NMC. They may very well use NCA if they have the space. A scooter with a HUB motor could even use an LFP pack.

Speaking of LFP, they can be charged to 100% and discharge to 20% and still have over 2000 to 8000 cycles. More over, they can always be super charged.

Reliance recently announced that they bought Lithium Werks, which makes LFP cells in cylindrical form. These are the same batteries that are used in the Fisker Karma. The original batteries were made by A123, which went bankrupt and was acquired by a Chinese company. Lithium Werks has a licence to build those cylindrical batteries and also has some IP. Their cells, while unsuitable for small wheel-base cars, have a cycle life of 4000 cycles at 100% charge and discharge. Good for solar and commercial vehicles which have long wheelbase or high ground clearance.

Last edited by Aditya : 21st May 2022 at 17:26. Reason: Grammar and post formatting.
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Old 20th May 2022, 20:44   #12
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted No.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
- 8 year battery warranties are becoming common. What after that?
Nothing. After 8 years and 1.6 L kms, you would have recovered the cost of the battery and more in fuel savings.

Quote:
Is it going to cost a bomb? Check out the E2O's battery price, despite being a much smaller unit than what we see today:
The Nexon battery is listed at 7.2 L or so on Boodmo. But as per Tata engineers the battery need not become useless after 8 years. It could go on till even 11 years. Also the entire battery will not fail. Only the bad cells will need replacement. So you only need to pay for the replacement of the bad cells.

Quote:
Of course, point to note is that, as production increases, the price of batteries will go down.
Even if it doesn't, you've made enough savings to afford a new battery.

Quote:
But people like us who hold onto cars for 8 - 10 years are going to be in for a nasty surprise, as are 2nd & 3rd owners of EVs.
It could also be a pleasant surprise for those who are able to pick up these cars at low prices and source replacement cells (or ever the entire battery) for a decent price.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
From what we see today EV batteries are lasting way beyond the 8 year mark already.
True.

Quote:
Also, when do you want /need to replace a battery. Just because it doesnít hold as much charge as originally, when do you change it out.
Specially if you are not doing much running daily. But you also have to keep in mind that earlier you were getting 300 Km on a full charge and now you are getting 200 km. The cost of the full charge is same but the range is less so your running cost is increasing

Quote:
That doesnít mean it stops working after eight years! Those EVs will run for years after those 8 years.
That's exactly what the Tata engineers said.


Quote:
I think the biggest problem with new technology is we all worry way too much. And we tend to get stuck in rethinking and arguing around the initial shortfalls and problems. We should keep up with current state of affairs and look beyond it as well. Then all old initial problems and challenges will disappear.
Classic examples of this were:
- Tubeless Tyres
- Fuel Injection
I still remember how people were ready to buy an older Carburettor car because it was reliable and how some people put tubes into tubeless tyres.

Quote:
Originally Posted by srini1785 View Post
I spend on an average 8000.0 per month on fuel (Petrol) and drive 56Kms every working day. That makes it around 1L per year on fuel. For 8 years, i would have spent on an average around 8L. So if i had an EV, probably i would have ended up spending around 1000.0 per month on charging and at the end of the 8 year period around 1L on charging. So with what i saved i.e 7L , i would not mind spending around 3.5L for a new battery.
Those who have done this calculation are not worried.

Quote:
As far as new battery cost is concerned, I would set aside a fixed amount every month in a RD and at the end of the 3 year period, there would be enough for a new battery. So I don't see where the cause for concern is?.
Excellent idea.

Quote:
EVs depreciate much faster than an IC Vehicle and at the end of the 8 year period, your EV car is worth only 10% of the original price.
This is what you are anticipating today. In 8 years time, things will be clearer and people will have more confidence i buying used EV's and prices should be better.
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Old 21st May 2022, 09:12   #13
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

Voted Yes.

Reasons :
- Severity : failure/bricked battery means an inoperative vehicle.
- Cost : its very expensive to replace.
- Warranty and Maintenance : TML had said that they would incrementally keep replacing cells till the 7 year warranty period so customers are left with at least a 80% healthy battery post that.
Makes us feel secure but my concern lies with the challenges with on ground execution at any company's ASC. This doesn't apply to countries with better after sales and customer protections.
- Waste : Batteries will eventually have to be scrapped and I hope we have a sound disposal mechanism before that to match in scale.

Low Quality batteries and components :
The biggest concern IMO. While the reputed manufacturers will have a certain quality target to meet but what's stopping the cheap and low quality battery and components to swamp the market and with the quality stuff still steeply priced those would become a hit in no time as the primary reason for people going electric, en masse, is to lower costs in the near future.

Just take a look at how the EV scooter market is doing.

Last edited by shancz : 21st May 2022 at 09:12. Reason: formatting
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Old 21st May 2022, 10:36   #14
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

I voted "Yes".

I'd like owners of EVs to post their interpretation of the battery warranty. The devil is in the details, they say. So, specifically, I've the following questions:

1. The charge retention capacity goes down with time and every charge. At what level does the warranty kick in?
2. What will happen when the warranty kicks in? A brand-new battery set be provided? Or only the offending cell will be replaced? Or a repair will be done free of cost?
3. Apart from the charge retention, what other issues will trigger a warranty claim?

Regards,
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Old 21st May 2022, 14:19   #15
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Default Re: Electric Car Batteries: How concerned are you about the replacement costs?

I am not concerned much about the battery replacement costs, with evolution in the the battery technology and local manufacturing the cost will definitely come down to more realistic amounts in future.
I am not going for an EV for at least 4-5 years and by then I am sure there will be more clarity on this.
Quote:
Originally Posted by shancz View Post
Voted Yes.
Low Quality batteries and components :
The biggest concern IMO. While the reputed manufacturers will have a certain quality target to meet but what's stopping the cheap and low quality battery and components to swamp the market and with the quality stuff still steeply priced those would become a hit in no time as the primary reason for people going electric, en masse, is to lower costs in the near future.

Just take a look at how the EV scooter market is doing.
Totally agree with you, I am not sure if India has its own testing standards yet, since most cells and batteries are made in colder countries the safety standards applied to batteries might not be as per the hot climate we experience here.
If I am going for EV my biggest concern will be the dangers the battery pose rather than the deterioration of performance, which I think will be a acceptable fact.

Considering a scenario where the sales of EV vehicles are increasing considerably, we are going to have a lot of EVs charging in apartment parkings, With a possibility of low quality of batteries flooding the market this is a recipe for disaster. There is no denying fact that EVs are slowly replacing ICE but the concern for most is still the charging infrastructure, range deterioration and the battery replacement costs which may soon change to safety if incidents similar to ones reported in 2 wheeler EVs starts appearing in EV cars which may be a possibility if checks are not made in time and specific standards not defined.
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