Wednesday, Aug 17, 2022

Regulatory Support, Charging Infra Can Help Faster EV Adoption In India: Kia

The automaker noted that the lack of incentives for buyers in the personal space could lead to slow adoption of such cars in the country

Kia EV6.

Regulatory support in terms of incentives for personal segment and standardisation of charging infrastructure can help in the faster adoption of electric vehicles in the country, a top Kia India official said on Thursday.

While lauding the Indian government's efforts to push the electric vehicle segment in the country, the automaker noted that the lack of incentives for buyers in the personal space could lead to slow adoption of such cars in the country.

Currently, the FAME II scheme covers only electric two-wheelers, three-wheelers, and four-wheeled passenger vehicles for commercial usage and goods carrying vehicles.

Under the scheme, vehicles are provided with incentives that help to bring down its purchase price.

"The government policies are very important...some of the other countries provide some incentive to the EV buyer but in India, there is no such incentive for the buyer in the personal segment. That is why I think it will take some time to expand the EV market in India..," Kia India Managing Director and CEO Tae-Jin Park told PTI in an interaction.

He was replying to a query regarding policy measures which could help in the fast adoption of EVs in the country.

Park also listed limited charging infrastructure in the country as a "difficult situation".

"There needs to be standardisation of charging infrastructure to expand the EVs...and the other one is how we can localise more in India as half of the cost is battery. How and who will be going to produce the battery cells and not just assemble..," he noted.

Park said battery cell localisation is an important factor to push the sector. He noted that with favourable government policies and changing consumer mindset, EV mobility could witness rapid adoption by 2025.

Commenting on the company's EV roadmap in the country, Park said: "We are starting with EV6 and we are also confirming a localised EV in 2025. We are also looking very carefully at which models could be brought here...It is not finalised yet."

When asked about the plans regarding the locally produced model in 2025, he noted that the product would be manufactured in the country and cater to the mass market segment with affordable pricing.

"...we are also looking to localise some of the important parts in India, all those things we are considering carefully," Park said.

Park also stated that the company's global headquarters was seriously looking at India as a manufacturing and export hub for the future.

"They are looking at what kind of models and investments would be required in India. They are looking at it carefully. We are continuously talking and discussing with them and then we will finalise it step by step...nothing is finalised as of now," he noted.

On Thursday, Kia India forayed into the EV space with the launch of EV 6 model in the country.

It is the company's first model in the EV space and fifth overall in India.