Ola's electric car looks to ride on India's EV ambitions

With a range of over 500 km per charge, it will have an all-glass roof and assisted driving capability.
Riding high. 
Riding high. 
Image: Anindito Mukherjee (Reuters)
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Ola is set to challenge India’s electric car market leaders.

Having forayed into the country’s electric vehicle (EV) industry last year with its two-wheeler, the Softbank-backed company yesterday (Aug. 15) announced its plans to launch a four-wheeler by 2024.

What will be special about Ola’s electric car?

Bhavish Aggarwal, the CEO of Ola Electric, said his decade-old company’s EV will go from zero to 100 kilometres per hour (just over 62 mph) in a mere four seconds. With a range of over 500 kilometres per charge, it will have an all-glass roof and will be equipped with assisted driving capability.

“The EV would also be keyless and handle-less,” Aggarwal’s presentation said.

The founder shared his vision for the country’s EV industry along with a roadmap to develop a “full EV club.” Ola plans to expand its “Futurefactory” in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu, a key auto and EV hub, he said.

Ola, at its full capacity, will be able to produce a million cars, 10 million two-wheelers, and 100-gigawatt hours of cells each year, its CEO claimed.

Aligning with India’s EV goal

Ola’s electric car will directly compete with, among others, those of the Tatas and Mahindra’s.

India’s nascent EV industry contributes merely 1% to its car sales, but interest in the segment, despite safety concerns, is growing.

In 2022, sales are likely to touch a million units, equivalent to the past 15 years’ cumulative, auto body Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles, indicates.

Prime minister Narendra Modi government wants 70% of all commercial cars, 30% of private ones, 40% of buses, and 80% of 2-wheelers and 3-wheelers sold in India to be electric by 2030.