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Automotive Product Finder Magazine | Evolet aims to open 100 plus dealerships across India
Evolet aims to open 100 plus dealerships across India
EV industry battling through challenges
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Rissala Electric Motors was incorporated in June 2019 with the brand name ‘Evolet’ which was registered in August, 2019. The EV products; electric scooters, motorcycles, ATV, buses were formally launched on Sept 4, 2019 at New Delhi and commercial operations began from 1st Oct, 2019 with plant setup at Bilaspur, Haryana for two-wheeler division and at Hyderabad & Chennai for bus division. Prerana Chaturvedi, Executive Director & CEO, Evolet, speaks about EV startup journey and their future plans to scale up the business.
How did you start your journey in electric vehicles (EVs)?
Front leaders of the company are veteran defence officers with over two decades experience in serving armoured corp and army with electric scooters and motorcycles for the armed forces, cantonment, and air bases.
The basic aim was to provide clean, quiet, friendly, and affordable electric two wheelers to defence forces. Adding to our strength is working with top brains – IIT students, German, French and Italian scientists on technological front. Over the years we have tested more than 2000 vehicles in various models of 2w, 4w in extreme weather conditions; from hot deserts to heights & chills…. And thus began our commercial venture under brand name ‘Evolet’, which has started manufacturing electric vehicles in 2w, 4w and bus segment for public at large, corporations and government bodies.
A number of factors including a positive change in customer perception, technological advancement and greater intervention from the government is combining to focus attention on EV adoption. This presents a good business opportunity for those who want to open 2w EV showrooms across India.
Seeing a fundamental shift towards a new competitive landscape, Evolet, a part of Rissala Electric Motors Pvt Ltd is setting up series of dealerships and distributorships for its electric vehicle range in Haryana, Punjab, Chandigarh, UP, Maharashtra, Telangana, Rajasthan. Evolet range of models be it electric scooters, scooty, motorcycles, ATV’s aptly addresses the requirement of all age groups and provides higher revenue earning potential for its commercial customers. In line with our objective to establish a nationwide presence, Evolet aims to open 100 plus dealerships across India by the end of 2020. We are aggressively charting our plan and are targeting sales of around 150 units per month per dealership. The company is focusing on the cities where the two-wheeler traction is maximum.
What were the initial challenges? How did you overcome those?
As a company, constraints of limited supply/ fluctuating raw material prices, non-existent public charging infrastructure, low levels of investments in EV manufacturing, higher battery capacity charging/ import duty on batteries seems initial hiccups, though statutory compliances, norms and procedures as laid down by GOI for EV industry took its course and time. At present, our EV products- electric scooters & motorcycles, buses all have gone through stringent tests and are certified by ARAI, ICAT.
Tell us about your initial funding.
We have heavily invested in the research and development and building IT infrastructure to support our complete plant production at Haryana, Hyderabad and Chennai plants. It is making investments in phased manner and have allocated budget of approx. Rs 150 crore for its two-wheeler division and Rs 300 crore for the E-Bus division to support its pan India operations and production. However, investors are ready at the click of a button to multiply the figures as per our increasing requirements.
Do you source EV components or you manufacture them?
At present, most of our components in power train segment are sourced from Germany, though we are in the process of achieving 100 per cent localisation by next year. We are also sourcing raw material through different vendors who provide high-quality components for manufacturing of EV products, gradually we will consolidate to 35 no.s soon.
Our USP is the seamless integration of vehicle with power train, synchronised with in-house built BMS, communication through the in-house built IOT to the in-house built mobile application. This seamless integration of the key components that are all built in-house offers an acute price advantage and complete control over services offered while creating greater efficiency and improving the user’s experience. Another aspect that stands out about our vehicles is the trendy look that we have chosen which is in sync with the demands of the younger generation.
Have you collaborated for manufacturing and product development?
The electric buses are being manufactured jointly by Chennai-based AMS Electric Mobility and Gurugram-based Rissala Electric Motors for catering to the requirements of various government agencies and corporates. AMS Electric Mobility Pvt. Ltd. is the chief engineering and design house of our electric buses and holds ARAI certification and homologation under its name.
Evolet manufacturing facilities are situated in Haryana, Hyderabad and Chennai offering 13 products in various segments. Its Bilaspur, Haryana facility has a built-up area of 1.4 lakh sq ft with manufacturing capacity of 3.5 lakh two-wheelers per annum. The Hyderabad and Chennai facility too are fully-equipped to produce 1500 buses per annum and is spread in an area of over 2 lakh sq ft.
Tell us about the batteries of your two wheelers?
We should look at it from the view that every house has charging points. People can charge it anywhere. Our models include swappable batteries also so you can unplug and charge them as per your convenience. In any case these E-bikes are being driven in a defined territory be it city limits or towns which gets easily addressed by the range of vehicle which is 60-65 km per charge.
Tell us about your newly launched products and your future plans?
We have launched e-scooters and motorcycles in different variants which have sleek & stylish looks targeted at Gen Y and to suit the corporate image and also to the macho look of a sports bike. 80 per cent of fun starts once a user tests the electric vehicle himself for the first time, the perception immediately changes. These products are excellent in performance and efficiency and are in fact apt for all age groups. Fully IOT & GPS enabled with a host of other features such as reverse gears in 2W, multi safety switches, and advanced self-balancing systems fitments will give ultimate experience to these tech savvy youth, which differentiates this category from conventional ICE vehicles. As the EV acceptability increases we will come up with many more products for the youth.
The company plans to set up a series of battery charging stations with solar panels in various cities for ease of EV customers. Evolet plans to invest more in terms of technology, people, aftermarket network, spares, and service and will continue to invest and grow in this space. We are doing meaningful things to secure charging infrastructure not only for Evolet customers but for other brands as well. We are also getting into institutional deals and we are getting good inquiries. The plan is being formulated for distributing it to institutions effective first quarter of next year.
In line with our objective to establish a nationwide presence, our electric-scooter venture, Evolet aims to open 100 plus dealerships across India by March 2020. We are aggressively charting our plan and are targeting sales of around 150 units per month per dealership. We have finalized our dealerships in the states of Maharashtra, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Punjab, Chandigarh, Haryana, Rajasthan besides Nepal and Bangladesh, the showrooms of which will come up by March 2020.
Comment over India’s stand over Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP).
We would like to stand by our country’s stand that we talk about greater regional integration as well as for freer trade and adherence to a rule-based international order. India being a competitive market for players, things have to be made clear to the world that we are also here as strong players. As a country we want to strengthen the region and to do so a balance has to be maintained which should equally provide strength to every member. So, as a company we stand by the decision of our Prime Minister. Will you be having your own dealership network or will you sell it through other dealers?
We have planned to work through dealership network and the company is focusing on the cities where the two-wheeler traction is maximum with an intention to move up its sales target of 1000 units a month by the end of this FY. As of now we have opened up 13, Fifteen will be operational by the middle of December and next year it will multiply exponentially.
Did you receive government aids? If yes, tell us how it helped?
To receive subsidy under FAME II India, electric two-wheeler makers must source more than 50 per cent of the components locally and then get eligibility certificates from vehicle testing agencies. Currently, we don’t qualify for this subsidy though we are working on the process. Sourcing battery manufacturers locally was the biggest challenge especially lithium-ion batteries. Now at least there are two or three manufacturers who are making batteries.
Rissala Electric Motors
Electric Scooters And Motorcycles
AMS Electric Mobility
Multi Safety Switches
And Advanced Self-Balancing Systems
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