Maruti Suzuki is likely to launch the Wagon-R electric by mid-2020 and it will hit a price point of under Rs 7 lakh thanks to subsidies under the FAME 2 scheme. FAME stands for the Faster adoption and Manufacturing of Hybrid and Electric Vehicles.
According to a report in Autocar India, the on-road price of the electric Maruti Suzuki Wagon-R may be about Rs 7.5 lakh, pointing to an ex-showroom price of under Rs 7 lakh. Subsidies offered under the FAME scheme would amount to Rs 1.25 lakh or more. This will likely make the Maruti Suzuki Wagon-R Electric, the most inexpensive electric car in India at that point.
Currently, the Mahindra E20 is the most inexpensive electric car one can buy, but even then it is quite pricey at Rs 8 lakh plus for this small electric car on road. The Mahindra E20 Plus will be discontinued by October 2019 as it will not be able to meet the new crash-test and safety norms.
That leaves the Maruti Wagon-R electric as the most likely entry-level electric car in India. There are some companies that have been trying to retro-fit electric kits in cars such as Jayem Auto in Coimbatore with the Tata Nano and E-Trio in Hyderabad. But these are based on existing cars.
The Maruti Suzuki Wagon-R electric will be built on a new platform. It will have a range per charge of about 250 Km. In October 2018, Maruti Suzuki flagged off a fleet of 50 Wagon-R based electric vehicles for extensive testing all around India, under all weather conditions. Maruti Suzuki has tied up with Toyota as well to jointly develop hybrid and electric vehicles going ahead.
Mass market adoption of electric vehicles is likely to happen only if the market leader manages to successfully launch an electric car. In 2018, only 1,200 electric cars were sold in the country in the entire year.
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