The first all-electric car from Maruti Suzuki due for debut in 2020 will be a new car and not an electric version of any of its existing cars, a top company official has said.
Maruti Suzuki, India’s car market leader, will launch a battery-run electric car, which will be developed by Suzuki Motor Corporation and Toyota Motor Corporation under an alliance announced in 2017.
Kenichi Ayukawa, managing director, Maruti Suzuki India said: “Existing model will not have an electric option but future models will have them.”
“I can say that may be in the current product portfolio we don’t have (the option); the future vehicles will not only be petrol-diesel powertrain, but also will have electric option.” Added Ayukawa.
The Delhi-based company, which in December had said it would start a preliminary survey to gather details of what prospective buyers look for in an electric car, has started work on electric vehicles alongside its parent company.
Company officials have already said that pricing will be a key component for promotion of electric vehicles in the country and going by the current costs trends it will be difficult to price the first electric car below Rs 7 lakh. Still the company will benefit from its parent’s localization efforts.
Suzuki is constructing a Rs 1,151 crore plant in Gujarat under a tripartite alliance (with Toshiba and Denso) for manufacturing lithium-ion batteries. These batteries will be used by Maruti Suzuki as well as by electric cars supplied to Toyota Kirloskar sold by Suzuki.
In a few months Tata Motors will launch electric variants of the Tiago and Tigor models, both of which are available in petrol and diesel options. The Tigor is presently sold only to the government-run agency Energy Efficiency Services (EESL) which uses them for ferrying government employees.