Nissan Motor is reportedly looking to manufacture all-electric budget small car in India. However, the company has sought concessions from the government to support sales of its cheapest clean cars.
According to TOI a price of around Rs 7 lakh – or upwards is being considered for the car – which is under study presently.
Speaking to the publication Nicholas Thomas, Global Director for Nissan’s electric vehicles (EV) said “If you want to sell electric cars with significant volumes in India, you have to make them there. We are considering this (local manufacturing) as part of a study.”
The report also states that the company is also looking to export made in India electric cars and may sell it in other Asian countries to gain economies of scale and ride on India’s low-cost manufacturing processes.
When Asked how soon a decision can be firmed up, Thomas said, “It depends on the Indian electric market, and how soon it develops.” However, he said that the government needs to come up with credible solutions to support the growth of electric cars till they are in their infancy. “We’ve had many rounds of discussions with the Indian government on this issue. Though their target of having electric cars by 2030 is very clear, there is no clear roadmap on how to get there… We need more clarity.”
Thomas said that battery costs – while coming down over the last few years – are still to reach affordable levels. “It will take a few more years before the costs come down to levels where we can sell electric cars at prices which are lower than what we charge for the current petrol and diesel vehicles. Until that time, we need subsidies from the government to promote their sale and encourage mass adoption. Otherwise, the transition to the cleaner vehicles will take longer.”