After being launched in China, the Kwid EV is expected to enter India by 2022
Renault has finally confirmed that it is planning to launch an EV in China. Based on the Kwid, it will be rather affordable, considering the fact that low-cost EVs are the ones that sell well in China. The manufacturer has also confirmed that if the Kwid EV is successful in China, it will be exported to other markets like India, Brazil and the Middle East.
Carlos Ghosn, CEO and Chairman of Renault, has reportedly said, “In China, we can't sell the Leaf. Too expensive and too sophisticated. We can't sell the Renault Fluence. Too expensive. What sells in China? Low-cost electric cars. So we are putting engineers from the alliance to develop a low-cost Renault Kwid EV for China. I just test drove the car in China. It will be a very well engineered car at a very low cost. And once it works in China, there's no reason you're not going to export the car to India, to Brazil, to the Middle East”.
The Kwid EV will most likely enter the Indian market by 2022. But before this, many other manufacturers have already announced their plans to launch EVs in India. Recently, Suzuki and Toyota announced a joint venture. According to the JV, Suzuki will manufacture and supply EVs for the Indian market, while Toyota will provide technical support for the same. The first EV to come out of the JV is expected to be a small car. This is reaffirmed by the fact that Toyota has already signed an MOU with the Andhra Pradesh government to deliver a small electric car for its Amaravathi smart city project. The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2018. Moreover, if that’s the case, the small EV from Toyota will give a serious competition to the Kwid EV when it is launched in India.
Other than these Japanese giants, homegrown automaker Tata is also planning to launch its EV in India soon. Tata is already producing the Tigor EV to meet the 10,000 EV order it received from EESL and we think it won’t take long to reach showrooms. However, Tata Motors has voiced its concerns over the supply chain challenges it is facing over the EESL order fulfilment.
With all things said, we think Renault really needs to ramp up its EV development if it wants to hold a commanding position in India’s EV market. Especially since manufacturers like Suzuki, Toyota and Tata have already fast-tracked their efforts and might have an upper hand over Renault.
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