Ola Electric on Monday said it will foray into the electric car segment with plans to launch its first model by 2024. The company, which struggled with deliveries for its electric scooters after it announced entry into the segment exactly a year ago, has set an ambitious target of selling 10 lakh electric cars by 2026-2027.
In a press conference, Ola founder and CEO Bhavish Aggarwal said Ola Electric aims to provide a range of electric two-wheelers to electric cars which are priced in the range of Rs 1 lakh to Rs 50 lakh. “We definitely have a full roadmap in the works in the car space… We will definitely have cars at the entry price market. We’re starting with a premium car and that comes out in 18 to 24 months,” he said when asked about the company’s plans for electric cars.
He further said, “We are envisioning across all the products (that) we will launch, maybe by 2026 or 2027 we will target a million cars a year by volume.” Aggarwal, however, did not elaborate how many electric car models the company would have by 2026-2027. Ola’s first electric car will have the capability to accelerate from 0-100 kmph in four seconds and will have a range of more than 500 kilometers per charge, he claimed.
On the rationale behind the plan to launch a premium electric car first, he said, “Global automakers think that the Indian market is not ready for world class technology and hence sell their hand-me-down tech in India. Now we need to change this. We deserve a car that defines this new India, an India that is fearless and believes in writing its own destiny.”
Aggarwal said Ola Electric has also been working to have a full-fledged electric vehicle ecosystem at a single site at its ‘Future Factory’ at Krishnagiri district in Tamil Nadu. At full scale, he said the facility “will produce a million cars, 10 million two-wheelers and 100 gigawatt hour of cells every year”. The company is also adding manpower for its battery cell research, he said, adding, “we have a large team of 200 members now and we will grow the team to about 1,000 people next year”.
When asked about hiring guidance for the electric car project, Aggarwal said, “…we’re closing in on 1,000 people, all working on the new products.” Ola Electric, which had stopped production of its S1 electric scooter in January this year, also announced resumption of sales of the same with deliveries slated to commence from September 7. The S1 comes with a 3 KWh Lithium-ion battery pack with a range of 90 km to 128 kms on a single charge depending on drive mode along with upgraded softwares. It has been priced at Rs 99,999.
The company, which in August last year forayed into the green mobility space with the launch of its electric scooters S1 and S1 Pro priced at Rs 99,999 and Rs 1,29,999, respectively, had postponed delivery timelines for its much anticipated products citing global semiconductor shortage issue. The company, which opened bookings at Rs 499 in July last year for its electric scooters S1 Pro and and S1, started online purchase process in September. It initially planned to start deliveries in October but later pushed to November and then again to the second half of December last year.
In January this year, the company had communicated to customers that it would prioritise production of S1 Pro model, while S1 manufacturing has been shifted to late 2022 with company CEO stating that it is upgrading all of its S1 customers to S1 Pro hardware. Apart from delays in deliveries, instances of the company’s electric scooter catching fire led to consumer disquiet. In April this year Ola Electric had recalled 1,441 units of its electric two-wheelers after a fire incident.