1. What target audience are you looking at for the upcoming scooters?
Electric scooters are the new mode of transportation. They are both environmentally friendly and cost-effective modes of transportation. Regarding demographics, people between the ages of 18 and 25 and 26 and 35 are currently more inclined and positive about EV adoption, thanks to increased awareness and growing acceptance. The market, too, has moved from unorganized organic growth. We plan to establish a dealership network starting in North, East, and Central India. However, based on market trends, we see significant potential for low-speed sales from the rest of the country, particularly Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities in India. We plan to target Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities with low-speed scooters and Metros with high-speed scooters/bikes.
2. Low-speed electric scooters offer limited use cases, what was the ethos behind developing low-speed models? Will the brand roll out mid or high-speed gradually?
The Indian electric two-wheeler industry is booming right now, thanks to government subsidies, increased EV awareness, and, as a result, faster EV adoption. Low-speed electric scooters have contributed significantly to the sector to the growth. They are more convenient for shorter distances and do not require a license or registration to purchase, making them more user-friendly. At eRise our Low-speed scooters are more focused in Tier -2 & 3 cities where cost economics play a great role. For commercial use, an electric two-wheeler is significantly cheaper per km because the user will be paying for electricity, which is one-tenth the fuel cost. Electric mobility benefits commercial mobility the most. Our high speed scooters shall be rolled out by January 2023.
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3. How was the response to the pilot project in Rohtak? What are the expansion plans for the dealership network?
The enthusiastic response to our pilot project encouraged us to enter the Indian EV market. During that time, we sold over 1000 scooters. In terms of growth, we intend to target 200+ dealers across 175+ sites in India over the next three months. As previously stated, we want to expand our markets and capture commercial opportunities in Tier 2 and Tier 3 cities, in addition to metro areas.
4. Are you also looking at the last-mile delivery or the cargo electric two-wheeler segment?
E-commerce and food/grocery delivery companies are looking at purpose-built vehicles to replace the currently used personal mobility e2Wheelers in their fleets. Recognizing the huge potential and demand for custom-built vehicles in this segment, eRise intends to enter commercial 2w within the next 3 to 4 months. Without a doubt, the delivery industry is evolving, and we see tremendous potential and demand.
5. How much of the upcoming scooters is localized? What measures have been taken to ensure battery safety?
Currently, more than 50 % of our scooters are Made in India, and 50% of our components are sourced locally; however, because we want to aggressively pursue the Make in India initiative, we plan to increase it by 20% until the end of the quarter.
One of our top priority for us is the safety of our customers. The safety measures in lithium-ion , lithium phosphate and lead batteries are increasing as these technologies advance. We are constantly collaborating with battery suppliers while also evaluating and improving the performance and safety of our EVs. Numerous safeguards are put in place with this goal in mind, including the vehicle’s BMS, cell selection, and thermal management. Additionally, ongoing efforts are made to educate clients on safety precautions.
6. Is eRise prepared in terms of the new EV battery safety norms that are set to come into effect on 1st December? What effects do you think these norms would have in the EV industry in India?
Yes, we are prepared for the new EV Rules and any amendments they may entail because they are entirely for the benefit of our consumers and the environment. With the government’s extension, we could complete the task in such a short time. In my opinion, regulations and changes to battery types, battery pack designs, and onboard chargers will result in a more orderly and secure driving environment for consumers. This will ensure that EV and battery manufacturers continue to produce vehicles that have been certified by testing bodies. These changes were recommended by EV experts and are based on flaws discovered in the EVs that caught fire.