Maruti Suzuki has showcased a prototype electric vehicle (EV) at the ongoing MOVE Global Mobility Summit in New Delhi. The all-electric prototype is based on the Japan-spec WagonR, which is based on the Heartect platform. Suzuki launched the new WagonR in its home market in 2017 where it is even available with a hybrid powertrain. The prototype showcased recently, however, was manufactured at Maruti’s Gurugram plant.
In fact, the company has produced a fleet of electric cars for testing across the country. The carmaker hopes to put them through various test conditions to make sure they are reliable once they go on sale.
Maruti Suzuki seems bullish about its plans to introduce an electric vehicle as early as 2020. Last year, Suzuki announced that it will be partnering with Toyota for developing electric cars. Under the MoU (Memorandum of Understanding) Suzuki will develop its EVs with technical support from Toyota. Apart from that, the carmaker will also produce lithium-ion batteries, electric motors and other related components at its Gujarat facility. These measures should help Maruti Suzuki keep costs in check and price their EVs quite aggressively.
For now though, here’s the company’s official statement.
Maruti Suzuki commences fleet testing of Electric Vehicles in India
New Delhi, 7th September, 2018: Working towards its commitment to bring Electric Vehicle in India by 2020, Maruti Suzuki commences a nation-wide fleet testing of Electric Vehicles.
Testing of these Electric Vehicles will help to gather critical inputs based on customer perspectives. This extensive real life usage of the vehicles will help in validation and development of new technology. This exercise will help to create a reliable and suitable Electric Vehicle to delight Indian customers.
These Proto-type Electric Vehicles are developed on an existing model by Suzuki Motor Corporation, Japan and manufactured at Maruti Suzuki Gurugram Plant in India, exclusively for fleet testing.
Speaking on the initiative, Mr Kenichi Ayukawa, Managing Director & CEO, Maruti Suzuki India said, “Maruti Suzuki is committed to bring Electric Vehicle in 2020. The testing in multiple terrains and climatic conditions will help us get valuable insights from real life driving conditions. With these tests, we are confident that our Electric Vehicle will be well accepted by our valued customers.”