Sales of e-bikes almost nil in April


According to a media report, the sales of e-bikes fell from around 6,000 units in March to almost nil in April. Sales in May is expected to be in the hundreds and it could pick up pace only in August.

The report suggests that the reason for the fall in sales is the new FAME-II scheme, as the new rules require re-certification of all existing vehicles. The scheme came into effect on April 1, 2019, but the OEMs were informed of the re-certification only in March 2019. It is claimed that the certification process takes 2-3 months and all manufacturers should meet 50% localization to avail a subsidy. It is also claimed that only 3 models were certified by the end of April.

Some manufacturers claim that they have not been given enough time to prepare. Batteries, motors and controllers for electric vehicles are imported and they account for more than 50% of the price of the vehicle. They claim that localization is difficult considering the number of electric two-wheelers sold. It is reported that annual volumes should reach 1 million units for vendors to sell at competitive prices.

The report also suggests that the price of electric two-wheelers under the new scheme could increase by Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 12,000, which would further pull down sales. While the vehicles were getting a subsidy of Rs. 22,000 under FAME I, the subsidy is expected to be Rs. 10,000 per kWh under the new scheme. In comparison, buses get a subsidy of Rs. 20,000 per kWh under FAME II.

Even without the difficulties of FAME II, only 1,26,000 electric two-wheelers were sold in the last financial year. The government intends to sell a million vehicles in the next three years.

Source: Economic Times

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