Electric Vehicle Start-ups are paving way for the future of electric mobility

We are all set to experience key changes in mobility in the coming times. Trends such as electrification, shared mobility and autonomy are set to take off. Services like car-sharing and ride-hailing have already been at work in hundreds of cities around the world and new advancements like intelligent transportation systems, traffic management applications, robo-taxi are in the pipeline for enhanced mobility in major cities. But the real question here is if we are heading towards a future on two wheels? With an extensive number of new electric vehicles coming up, it's no longer up for debate whether or not the future for the automotive industry is electric. Major players in the industry and start-ups are striving towards developing environment-friendly, integrated, automated and personalized travel on-demand.

With a huge number of youth population shifting to other cities for higher education and better employment opportunities, the rate of urbanisation has reached its peak. This has also resulted in rousing mobility needs, thereby causing the demand for vehicles to rise. The country’s quick shift towards electrifying mobility to further catalyse the demand for electric vehicles is also quite evident. In addition to this, support from the government in terms of easing regulations, reduction in battery cost and availability of charging infrastructure are expected to be instrumental for mass adoption of electric vehicles.

As per the Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles (SMEV), the Indian electric vehicles sales stood at 1,26,000 for electric two-wheelers and 3,600 for electric four-wheelers in FY19, as compared to FY18, where 54,800 electric two-wheelers and 1,200 electric four-wheelers were sold. The rapid growth witnessed in this sector is due to government’s push towards electric mobility in order to control the rising pollution caused by vehicles and its vision of having at least 30 per cent of electric vehicles on Indian roads by 2030.

Amidst this thriving market, start-ups are seeing carrying out crucial roles. Charging infrastructure and mobility services are the key opportunity areas for start-ups with the emergence of various new business models. In addition to this, they are also seen creating new business opportunities for digital technologies like charging location finders and reservation applications, online payments and ride-sharing services. To strengthen their work, investors, incubators, accelerators are also extending their hands.

Here is a list of start-ups in the electric vehicle domain that are building momentum for electric vehicles and paving the path for the future of electric mobility in India.

Ather Energy, a Bengaluru-based EV startup develops and manufactures its own e-scooters, offers charging infrastructure through its 'Ather Grid'. the start-ups provide consumer services that include cloud software upgrades and has also come up with new ownership models such as subscription and leasing, which are proving to be popular ownership models to bring customers on board before they can convincingly adopt the new technology.

Yulu, a tecnology driven micro-mobility platform that aims to reduce traffic congestion and air pollution, and has its fleet of human-powered bicycles (Yulu Move) and lightweight electric two-wheelers (Yulu Miracle) powered by innovation technologies like IoT, ML and AI. Using IoT as the backbone of operations, the vehicles can be rented seamlessly on a pay-per-use basis. Users can book a ride via the iOS or Android app and the smart bikes can be unlocked via QR codes.

DOT, a Gurugram based EV logistics startup, supplies EVs to major e-commerce and food-tech players such as Walmart, Amazon, Grofers, Blue Dart, DHL, Lenskart, Swiggy and McDonald’s.

Ultraviolette, an innovator in sustainable mobility and energy infrastructure. Its electric motorcycle – the F77 offers an acceleration of 0-60 kmph in 2.9 seconds, top speed of 140 kmph, and a range of 150 km on a single charge. The F77 is powered by Ultraviolette’s ‘Modular Battery’ technology. According to the company, their battery pack is much beyond just a power module. It is a self-sustaining advanced electronic device that comes with its own processor, memory, wireless communication, GPS module and more.

Okinawa, a 100 percent Indian electric two-wheeler company in Gurgaon launched Okinawa launched Lite, a new low-speed electric scooter in 2019. The electric scooter comes with an LED headlamp, LED turn indicators, and an LED tail lamp. The scooter has a steel frame body and rectangular type front suspension. It is a low-speed scooter which means the speed is limited to 25 km/h and it has a claimed range of about 50-60 km between charges.

With things in place and start-up actively performing, India can create a very conducive and robust environment for the adoption of electric vehicles to achieve its sustainability goals for a greener future.