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India

Bajaj Auto Looks To Expand Electric Vehicle Portfolio

Bajaj Auto is all set to expand its electric vehicle portfolio. After the Chetak electric scooter, the company will now roll out electric three-wheelers in September.

Executive director Rakesh Sharma said the electric three-wheeler would be manufactured at the Waluj plant in Aurangabad under the Bajaj Auto brand, unlike the electric two-wheeler, which is part of the wholly-owned subsidiary Chetak Technology.

The first of the launches will be in the passenger segment, followed by the cargo segment. These would be available in the small and large formats. A soft launch is planned in Delhi, and then it would be rolled out across 10-15 cities.

Sharma said the electric three-wheelers would follow the same path as the Chetak. The company had spent time testing the electric Chetak before rolling it out. They were doing the same with the electric three-wheeler.

Sharma said he does not see a rapid transition to electric three-wheelers, because costs are too high and there is uncertainty about batteries. He said a large segment of the three-wheeler electric vehicles are lead acid-powered.

Bajaj Auto is also bullish about its CNG-powered autorickshaws. The company, which is the leader in both the passenger and cargo segments, saw 62% of its sales come in the CNG segment during Q4FY22. Despite the rise in gas prices, the operating cost for the autos remained favourable compared to petrol and diesel.