Tesla has received a green signal from the Transport Ministry of India. Reportedly, it has got as many as 4 models approved. The Union Ministry of Road Transport and Highways has certified the manufacture and import of 4 models of Tesla cars. Hence, Tesla Inc. is one step closer to be on Indian roads. According to a document seen by Bloomberg, the American electric vehicle Tesla, has received the approval of being ‘Roadworthy’ in India.
The recent news has confirmed that Tesla vehicles match the requirements of the Indian market. They match the terms of safety and emission and roadworthiness. The vehicles that will be launched first in India are Tesla Model 3 and Model Y variants. Tesla’s upcoming car Model 3 is expected to be launched at a price of Rs.70 lakhs.
India’s Tesla Import Duty: A Barrier in Clean Energy Vehicles
India has a huge potential to become a global electric vehicle market. The customers are also more conscious about buying electric vehicles. However, the trade restrictions such as import duty deter foreign players from entering the Indian market.
The Chief Executive Officer of Tesla, Elon Musk, took to Twitter recently said that import restrictions in India are one of the highest in the world. He further added that the nation treats clean energy vehicles the same as gasoline. In addition to that, he mentioned that it does not coincide with India’s Climate Goals. It is one of the main reasons why Tesla had been reluctant to launch in India.
But as Tesla has now got approval from the Indian government, CEO, Elon Musk has said that it is ‘ quite likely’ to have a Tesla factory in India. Capturing the Indian Vehicle Market is not going to be an easy task. Firstly, owing to the high prices of Tesla vehicles. Secondly, because Electric Vehicles account for only 1% of India’s annual car sales.
Challenges faced in India’s ‘Electric Shift’
- A major hurdle faced by companies wanting to develop Tesla Electric vehicles in India is financing opportunities available.
- An electric shift in India is a far-fetched dream as there is scant charging infrastructure. India neither produces lithium nor li-ion batteries used to charge Electric vehicles. Therefore, it is dependent on imports for EV batteries which results in high prices.
- There are only a few options available in the Electric vehicles segment. As a result, customers are apprehensive about buying these clean energy products.
- The range of the vehicles Tesla has also been a point of concern for many buyers. As the charging infrastructure is only concentrated in urban areas. Many people worry about how the vehicle will cover the distance from point A to B without the battery running out.
Thus, the electric automobile revolution has faded into insignificance in India. However, Union Minister of Road and Transport, Nitin Gadkari has time and again reiterated the importance of the shift to electric vehicles. He has shared the Government’s vision of making India ‘ World’s largest supplier and manufacturer of Electric Vehicles‘.
Going by current trends, it still seems a long way to go!