Mahindra Electric has just launched the eKUV100 electric micro SUV, which at Rs. 8.25 lakhs ex-showroom Delhi (after FAME II subsidy) is the least priced electric vehicle that money can buy in India. The Mahindra eKUV100 was launched at the ongoing 2020 Auto Expo, and the micro SUV was unveiled alongside the eXUV300, an electric compact SUV that will be launched in the second half of this year as a Tata Nexon EV challenger.
The eKUV100 currently does not have any competition at its price point. The micro electric SUV promises a battery range of 150 kilometers, which makes a decent bet for everyday driving within city limits. 80 % of the electric vehicle’s batteries can be charged in just 55 minutes. The eKUV100 uses an electric motor rated at 40 KW of peak power and 120 Nm of peak torque. The battery pack is liquid cooled. An automatic gearbox drives the front wheels.
The KUV100 micro SUV is also available with a 1.2 liter-3 cylinder naturally aspirated petrol engine option. The KUV100’s triple cylinder diesel engine was recently discontinued as Mahindra did not make it meet Bharat Stage 6 (BS6) emission norms.
The KUV100 is available with 5 speed manual and automated manual transmission (AMT) options. One of the smallest and least priced SUVs offered by Mahindra, the KUV100 has been a tepid seller right from launch. The arrival of the electric variant could move sales figures northwards.
A pioneer in electric mobility in the Indian market, Mahindra is working on a slew of electric vehicles that will be launched in the coming months and years. The next big launch in the electric vehicle space is the eXUV300, which gets styling that’s different from the petrol and diesel powered versions. The eXUV300 is expected to be much more pricier than the petrol and diesel powered variants, and we expect it to sit in the 12-14 lakh price bracket when launched. The Tata Nexon, the XUV300’s prime competitor, has already fired the first shot by offering buyers an affordably priced, relatively high-range electric variant.
In response, Mahindra is likely to offer a similar range/charge, and similar performance. Both Tata Motors and Mahindra are betting big on electric vehicles for the Indian market, which has been witnessing a steady but growing number of electric cars, mainly in the Rs. 10-25 lakh bracket. As more and more mass market car makers get into the electric vehicle sector, prices are likely to come down to more affordable levels.