Should you buy the Mahindra Reva E2O electric car after the latest price drop?

Snapshot: Mahindra Reva has introduced a battery rental scheme for the E2O electric car, in the process dropping prices of the car by a whopping 1.7 lakh rupees. CarToq delves deeper into the battery rental scheme and analysis whether buying the E2O under the new scheme makes sense for the city car buyer. Bangalore on-road prices of the E2O and Celerio have been considered for this report.

Mahindra Reva E2O Electric Hatchback Pic
Mahindra Reva E2O Electric Hatchback

Alright, so Mahindra has just dropped prices of the E2O with the introduction of the “Goodbye Fuel, Hello Electric” scheme. Under this scheme, you can buy the TO (base) variant of the E2O for about 5.74 lakh rupees, on road Bangalore. At this price, the Reva E2O plans to compete with the likes of the Grand i10, Ritz and Celerio Automatics, as a convenient city car.

Under the new battery rental scheme, an E2O buyer will have to shell out 2,599 rupees each month for 5 years as monthly installments (EMI) towards battery rental charges. The total rental amount comes to about 1.56 lakh rupees at the end of five years. Mahindra Reva assumes that a E2O buyer will drive about 800 kilometers a month or about 27 kilometers a day.

Assuming that the E2O is charged every alternate day, the cost of electricity in Bangalore (at an average price of 5 rupees/unit) will come up to around 500 rupees. The E2O is likely to consume about 100 units of electricity to cover 800 kilometers over a period of one month, including allowances made for  range anxiety and the current discharged from the battery when the car is not in use.

With these figures, monthly running costs of the E2O excluding service costs but including battery rental EMIs comes up to about 3100 rupees or 3.88 rupees/km.

But is the Mahindra E2O, at the reduced price tag for you? Let’s analyze. 

Maruti Suzuki Celerio AMT Photo
Maruti Suzuki Celerio AMT

First of all, let’s consider the Maruti Celerio AMT’s price tag and take it up from there. The car’s LXi AMT variant, at 5.30 lakh rupees, on road Bangalore, is cheaper than the E2O by about 45,000 rupees. In fact, the Celerio is the cheapest semi-automatic car that money can buy in India.

Although Maruti Suzuki advertises an ARAI certified mileage figure of 23.01 Kmpl for the Celerio AMT, let’s consider a more realistic figure of about 17 Kmpl for the car under city driving conditions. For a monthly running of 800 kilometers in Bangalore, fuel costs for the Celerio will come up to 3,730 rupees or 4.66 rupees per kilometer.

Total running costs/km including service costs

The WagonR and the A-Star cost about 3,000 rupees to service every 10,000 kilometers. On a similar note, the Celerio AMT should cost about 3,000-3,500 rupees to service every 10,000 kilometers. Adding this charge to the running costs of the Celerio, the average running cost comes up to about 5 rupees per kilometer.

Mahindra claims that servicing an E2O would cost about 2,000 rupees every 10,000 kilometers. Adding the service costs to the E2O, the average running cost per kilometer comes up to about 4.1 rupees per kilometer. Since the E2O costs about 45,000 rupees more to buy than the Celerio LXi AMT, this adds about 90 paise per kilometer. Therefore, the E2O costs about 5 rupees per kilometer, the exact same as the Celerio, to run and maintain.

Advantage Mahindra Reva E2O

“Low” pollution levels. We emphasize on low as most electricity produced in India still uses non-renewable resources such as coal and diesel. Therefore, the E2O is technically not a zero emission vehicle.

Better protected against fuel inflation.

More compact and thereby easier to park.

Advantage Maruti Suzuki Celerio

Highway worthy.

No range anxiety. You simply, tank up and go!

Better performance makes for easier overtaking.

Working of the Celerio’s AMT explained through the video lined up,

 

From the report, it is evident that the Mahindra Reva E2O, with the new battery scheme in tow, is a compelling buy for the city car buyer who doesn’t use her car to travel outside the confines of the city. The car is compact and handy for shopping and schook runs. However, it also does dispel the myth that the E2O costs little to run. In fact, the E2O on an average costs just as much as the Celerio AMT to run and maintain.

Living with the Mahindra Reva E2O. CarToq does just that for 3 full days.

Also, given India’s electricity production coming mainly from coal fired units, the E2O, while being a low emission vehicle, is still a while away from being the green, non polluting messiah on four wheels. In a nutshell, the E2O is a slightly greener alternative to a car such as the Celerio AMT. Buy one if it suits your requirements.

What can tilt the scales towards the E2O in future?

Five words: National Electric Mobility Mission Plan (NEMMP) 2020. The Indian government’s much bandied and delayed NEMMP scheme promises direct subsidies to electric and hybrid cars. Under the scheme, the Indian government could foot about 1 lakh rupees as the subsidy doled out towards the manufacture of the E2O. If the subsidy does arrive, the E2O will finally realize its promise as a car that is more frugal to run that comparable hatchbacks in India. For now, why don’t you watch CarToq’s video review of India’s only all-electric car.