India’s electric mobility sector is on a steady road to recovery, post a lockdown-induced dip in sales, as India struggles to meet the FAME II deadline to add 10 lakh electric two-wheelers on roads by March 2022.
The electric vehicle segment witnessed 1.35 lakh units of EVs sold in the last financial year (2020-21), according to a recent study by CEEW Centre for Energy Finance’s (CEEW-CEF), an initiative of the Council on Energy, Environment and Water (CEEW), one of Asia’s leading think tanks.
The report indicates that two-wheeler and three-wheeler EVs made up for nearly 96 per cent of the sales during this period. Three-wheeler EVs made up about 65 per cent of all EV registrations. The two-wheeler EVs contributed around 30 per cent of all EV registrations during the same period. It is to be noted that the two-wheeler EVs sold during this period only include the ones with speeds greater than or equal to 25 kmph.
Surprisingly, while Delhi has decided to go big to promote electric vehicles with its EV policy, it does not figure as one of the top EV markets in India yet. In fact, the top three spots are owned by states like Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Karnataka.
Meghna Nair, an analyst at CEEW-CEF, said, “Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, and Karnataka were the top 3 states in terms of EV sales in FY21. Uttar Pradesh alone contributed 23 per cent of the country’s sales, with 31,584 EVs sold in FY21. The top 10 states together made 88 per cent of all EVs sold in India. Tripura, however, leads with the highest share of EVs per 1,000 internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles, with 52 EVs sold for every 1,000 ICE vehicles in FY21."
Arunabha Ghosh, CEO, CEEW, said, “Electric mobility is poised to be at the forefront of India’s green recovery. In the coming years, the Central and state governments need to reduce uncertainty by rolling out detailed and clear long-term policies. Further, targeted efforts are needed to solve critical challenges such as higher upfront cost of EVs, lack of end-user financing, consumer’s range anxiety, and inaccessible charging. The CEEW-CEF dashboard provides key information of over 600 public charging stations in the country."
The report highlighted that electric vehicle registrations formed 0.88 per cent of all vehicle registrations in India during the period, which is the highest share ever achieved. Since 2011-12, India has added over 6.38 lakh electric vehicles on the road so far.
The CEEW-CEF report shows that the Faster Adoption and Manufacturing of Electric Vehicles (FAME) in India - II scheme has achieved only 4.25 per cent of its sales targets till now. The agency thinks that one of the major barriers could be that buyers are not aware of the incentives available, like user subsidies and significant exemptions from road tax and registration fees.
Another important aspect in electric mobility, which has remained a concern for all, is the charging infrastructure. The CEEW-CEF report says India still has less than a thousand EV charging station across the country. Among them, Andhra Pradesh leads other states with 433 public charging stations. Telangana with 160 and Karnataka with 126 public EV charging stations are placed second and third. Delhi features at fourth with only 78 public EV charging stations.