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Honda plans EV push in India, wants to establish factory, launch 2 EVs by FY 2024

Manesar: Aiming to capitalise on the growing electric vehicle (EV) market in India, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI), a subsidiary of Honda Motorcycle Company in Japan, has decided to set up a specialised manufacturing facility for EVs at its Narsapura plant in Karnataka to achieve an annual production capacity of 1 million by 2030.

Announcing the company’s plans here to reporters Wednesday, HMSI Managing Director, President and CEO Atsushi Ogata said: “Electric mobility is growing in India and our aim is to build the country’s best EV business structure. To fulfil our EV business requirements we are coming up with a dedicated factory in Narsapura”. 

To begin with, the Japanese automobile major plans to launch two new electric two-wheeler vehicles in the financial year (FY) 2024 — a mid-range fixed battery vehicle and a swappable battery model. For this, it has developed an EV platform — Platform E — which will be the foundation for a variety of EVs that will be launched by the company.

“With our EV roadmap, now in the execution phase, we are taking substantial steps towards creating exclusive infrastructure for manufacturing a diverse range of EVs. Parallelly, we are also investing in the development of EV technologies, charging infrastructure and after-sales services,” he said.

Ogata said the company will leverage its existing sales network of around 6,000 touchpoints to set up charging stations as well as battery swapping points for consumers.

To support swappable battery alternatives, Honda Power Pack Energy India Private Limited (HEID) has already established 23 such stations at HPCl petrol pumps and metro stations in Bengaluru, which will be increased to 70 this year. Similar stations will be set up in other cities across India.

The company will also focus on utilising domestically manufactured components, including battery and other components like PCU, and design and produce motors locally, he added.

Also Read: Electric cabs are taking over Delhi’s roads, with 15-fold surge in registrations in 5 years

Growth plans

Ogata said in line with Honda’s global direction to increase electric vehicle and fuel cell vehicle unit sales to 100 per cent by 2040, the company will continue to improve efficiency of its IC (Internal Combustion) engines and at the same time focus on expanding its EV market as well.

HMSI, which registered a 21 per cent growth in sales to over 40 lakh two-wheelers in the domestic market this fiscal, expects a similar “low double-digit” growth this year as well. 

He further said the company will export over 3 lakh vehicles in the current fiscal and expects this to increase to nearly 4 lakh units in FY24. It also plans to export 20 models (as against 18 currently) to 58 countries (up from 38 currently) in FY 24.

He said the company will soon start a new assembly line for scooters at its Vithalapur plant in Gujarat soon with an additional capacity of 6 lakh units. 

HMSI currently has four plants in the country with an installed production capacity of around 52 lakh units per annum.

This year, the company also plans to launch at least three new ICE-powered two-wheelers before Diwali — two motorcycles — a 160cc and a 350 cc — and a 125 cc scooter.  

(Edited by Geethalakshmi Ramanathan)

Also Read: EV sales cross 1 million mark in India. Govt can’t take its foot off subsidy pedal now

Source: The Print

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