M&M TO ROLL OUT ELECTRIC VEHICLES
Starting with e-rickshaws by year-end, buses are to follow soon afterwards. The $17 billion Mahindra Group is underpinning its focus on electric mobility with another Rs 600 crore investment, taking its cumulative investment in electric vehicles to Rs 1,200 crore
It is also working on higher voltage powertrains to be used by its proposed luxury vehicle designed by Italian design firm Pininfarina (acquired by Mahindra in 2015) as well as a range of SsangYong vehicles. To that end, the company has also restructured its entire electric vehicle business using the former Mahindra Reva plant in Bengaluru to make electric powertrains only.
Mahindra Electric currently produces the 48 and 72 V engines that go into M&M's electric vehicles. The company is working on increasing productivity and launching a new 360-600 V powertrain that will go into the Pininfarina badged luxury electric car, small buses and other high-end vehicles. It will also be used by SsangYong for its e-vehicle range. The engine will be ready in two years.
Among the products due for immediate launch is a 9-metre bus to be launched in a year and a full range of e-rickshaws to be rolled out by this year end.
Pininfarina will also be involved in the design of future electric vehicles from the Mahindra stable, The overall e-vehicle focus includes plans to set up a 60,000 units electric vehicle production plant in Chakan, near Pune which will build electric vehicles and assemble lithium ion batteries.