Advancing India’s EV market
Greaves Electric Mobility, the Indian electric vehicle (EV) pioneer in which Abdul Latif Jameel is a key investor, took the opportunity to unveil the future of electric mobility at Auto Expo, one of the world’s premier auto shows in India. The unveiling included 6 new electric 2 & 3-wheelers, the new design inspiration for the vehicles unveiled, and a new identity for Ampere, setting out its ambitious plans for the growth.
Greaves Electric Mobility, the India-based electric vehicles (EV) manufacturer in which Abdul Latif Jameel has a significant minority interest , was one of the stand-out exhibitors at India’s Auto Expo 2023 this month, as it unveiled its latest range of electric two- and three-wheeler vehicles.
Auto Expo is the biggest auto show in India, equivalent to Europe’s ‘Geneva Motor Show’ for South Asia, showcasing the latest developments and trends in the automotive world, in terms of products, technologies and concepts. Taking place between January 13–18, 2023 at the India Expo Mart in Greater Noida, Uttar Pradesh, it featured 48 local and global automotive manufacturers.
During the last event held in February 2020, just before the COVID-19 pandemic, the expo had about 608,000 visitors. As Auto Expo 2023, concluded it witnessed a record turnout of over 636,000 visitors. A total of 82 vehicles made their global/India debut during the exhibition.
As well as the latest models from the leading global automotive brands, one of the major themes at this year’s Auto Expo was sustainable mobility, an area in which Greaves Electric Mobility, part of Greaves Cotton, is a pioneer in India. Building on the solid foundation of Greaves Cotton’s 163+-year engineering heritage, Greaves Electric Mobility’s mission is to help rapidly accelerate India’s transition to electrified, and sustainable, mobility.
It is already one of the country’s leading two-to-three-wheeler EV mobility companies, with a range of cleaner and more efficient vehicles that are accessible to EV aspirants across India. The company is one of the fast-growing EV brands in the country, with retail sales of 70,390 as of YTD December, full year 2022, a 398% increase over the same period last year. Its two-wheelers, sold under the brand name Ampere, has a market share of 13% as of YTD Dec, full year 2022.
India became the world’s third-largest market for light vehicles, including passenger cars, in 2022, displacing Japan, according to S&P Global Mobility statistics. Industry-wide sales grew an estimated 23% to 4.4 million vehicles. This includes the world’s largest fleet of two- and three-wheelers, which account for over 80% of all vehicles sales. 
Two-wheelers are generally purchased for personal use, but they are also widely used by many so-called ‘last-mile delivery’ operators. Three-wheelers on the other hand are bought for almost wholly commercial use, to move both people and goods around urban environments.
Electric-two wheelers have been leading the country’s EV sales charts, accounting for 62% of the EVs sold in the first nine months of the 2022/23, according to industry data, with analysts expecting electric scooter sales to account for more than 5% of total scooter and motorbike sales in India by the end of March 2023. There is similarly strong growth in the three-wheeler EV market. The global electric three-wheeler market size was valued at US$ 0.77 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach US$ 1.5 billion by 2031, at an annual compound growth rate of around 7%. Meanwhile a World Economic Forum report in November 2022 stated that “last-mile and urban delivery fleets are leading the adoption of electric two- and three wheelers in India and are likely the first segments to transition completely to electric.”
In India, in May 2022, electric three-wheelers outsold internal combustion engine (ICE) models for the first time, predominantly through the e-rickshaw segment. The expansion of both the two- and three-wheeler EV is expected to pick up further within the next three-to-five years, in line with Indian Government targets.
Government prioritizing electric
There are about 45 certified vehicle manufacturers of electric two- and three-wheelers in India in an otherwise consolidated auto market. Cumulative sales of these vehicles have reached an impressive 1 million units. However, this is still just 1 million out of India’s total two- and three-wheeler fleet stock of 250 million – leaving immense room for sustained growth.
“Electric two- and three-wheeler fleets provide low-cost and zero-emission mobility to people and goods in our cities. The Government of India is focusing on innovative policy measures and national flagship schemes to scale up electric mobility in the country,” explains Sudhendu J. Sinha, an adviser at NITI Aayog, the public policy thinktank of the Government of India.
A key reason for the increasing popularity of electric models in the two and three-wheeler segment is the Government’s FAME II subsidy program, which helps EVs to compete on price with traditional ICE models, supporting India in its net-zero commitments and reducing urban pollution levels, which are among the highest in the world.
It is in the context of this vast market potential that Greaves Electric Mobility, buoyed by the resources and support of Abdul Latif Jameel, has invested its long experience and leading-edge technical expertise in developing its next generation of ‘Made in India’ electric two- and three-wheeler vehicles, unveiled at India Auto Expo. with the new brand “Har Gully Electric Anthem – Take Charge with Ampere”
Leading the charge is the Ampere Primus, GEMPL’s first entry into the high-speed electric scooter category that combines performance, safety and elegant styling.
Targeted at modern millennial commuters and young families, the Primus aims to meet the needs of customers looking for higher speeds, eye-catching aesthetics and leading-edge technology. With a top speed of 77 km per hour, 0-40 kmph acceleration in under 5 seconds and a range of 100+ km on a full charge, the Primus can be driven in four modes – Eco, City, Power, and Reverse modes for optimum rideability and efficiency in a range of driving environments. It has a long-life 3 KWh lithium ferro phosphate (LFP) battery with a smart battery management system. Meeting the needs of the rider is central to the Primus. Available in four stylish metallic matt colorways – Himalayan White, Royal Orange, Havelock Blue and Buck Black – with dual tone body panels, it offers built-in Bluetooth connectivity and navigation, while the longer legroom and wider seats ensures maximum comfort and rideability.
As well as the Primus, Greaves Electric Mobility unveiled five additional product concepts to meet consumer needs across segments and price points. These included the Ampere NXG, a sophisticated and stylish electric scooter with IoT connectivity aimed at customers in the passenger mobility space; and the
Ampere NXU, a robust model designed for convenience, comfort and reliability for multiple commercial applications in the ‘gig economy’, or for personal use as a family vehicle.
Commenting on the new models, Nagesh Basavanhalli, Executive Vice Chairman of Greaves Cotton, said:
“Greaves Cotton is in the process of transitioning from a metal-based, manufacturing engineering company to an electric, electronic and mechatronics-based mobility technology company that is solving the 21st Century challenges in clean and affordable last-mile mobility.
“The products and technology we have unveiled here, today, bear testimony to our purposeful stride towards emerging as India’s most complete EV ecosystem player.
“Each product, inspired by the Arctic Tern, epitomizes its sustainable spirit, aerodynamic efficiency for mobility and intelligent design. We are committed to help India transition to electric mobility while setting a new benchmark of scale, sophistication, and diversity in the EV landscape. 2023 marks a new growth phase for us, as we provide holistic, end-to-end solutions and empower lives.”
Alongside the new Ampere two-wheeler electric scooters, Greaves Electric Mobility further expanded its growing presence in the electric three-wheeler segment, with a range of exciting new models for passenger and cargo mobility. Positioned as an affordable means of intermediate public transportation over short-to-medium distances, the three-wheeler market is seen as having particularly strong growth potential due to the mass appeal of these vehicles.
Greaves unveiled three new three-wheeler models at Auto Expo:
- Greaves ELP is an electric passenger three-wheeler vehicle that aims to empower drivers with disruptive cost savings.
- Greaves ELC is an electric cargo three-wheeler to meet the ever-growing demand in moving cargo at a much lower cost.
- Greaves Aero Vision is a futuristic cargo concept providing unmatched efficiency and performance in the evolving cargo mobility segment.
Each product embodies the company’s ‘Make-in-India’ ethos, with a high degree of localization with domestically sourced components. Commenting on the new product roadmap, Sanjay Behl, CEO and Executive Director of Greaves Electric Mobility said:
“We are delighted to unveil the full-spectrum of the GEMPL portfolio with six new electric two- and three-wheelers that offer an enhanced design language, state-of-the-art technology, and superior performance.
“With Ampere Primus, we will set a new benchmark in performance, comfort and elegantly styled products for the modern millennial commuters, while the new three-wheeler models will enable us to further strengthen our dominant position in last mile passenger and cargo mobility”.
In addition to the new vehicles on display at Auto Expo, Greaves Cotton also announced its first foray into electric powertrains, leveraging its the decades of engineering expertise, as it aims to lead last-mile passenger and cargo mobility through a complete EV technology ecosystem, including motor controllers and integration software. With technology as a key differentiator, the e-powertrain suite will be characterized by cutting-edge design, engineering, materials chemistry, weight and aesthetics that will be customized to the needs of OEM customers.
Announcing the plans for the electric powertrain business, Dr Arup Basu, Managing Director of Greaves Cotton, said:
“The electric powertrain business is a natural progression for us, given our sound engineering legacy. For decades, we have been making in India and meeting the needs of our customers. With our in-depth knowledge of vehicle duty cycle expertise, we will meet the evolving needs in the mobility segment with the unveiling of electric powertrain technologies. It is exciting to be in this space with our EV technology stack.”
Support of Abdul Latif Jameel
The ambitious growth plans revealed at Auto Expo come a little more than six months since Abdul Latif Jameel announced an investment of up to US$ 220 million in Greaves Electric Mobility, becoming the company’s second largest shareholder. The objective was to leverage the expertise and proven capabilities of the company to accelerate the development of India’s rapidly expanding two-to-three-wheeler EV ecosystem, furthering Abdul Latif Jameel’s objective to bring affordable EV products across the fast-developing economies of the Global South.
The investment in Greaves Electric Mobility builds on Abdul Latif Jameel’s extensive global experience in the global mobility sector as one of the leading independent distributors of Toyota Motor Corporation products (including Toyota, Lexus and Daihatsu brands) for over 68 years. The Jameel Family are also early-stage investors and the third-largest shareholder of US electric vehicle manufacturer RIVIAN, while the Jameel Investment Management Company (JIMCO) is a key investor in other cutting-edge innovators, such as US venture-backed electric air taxi pioneer, Joby Aviation.
The partnership also supports Abdul Latif Jameel’s long-standing commitment to sustainability in general, and to net zero and decarbonization in particular. This is exemplified by its flagship renewable energy business,
Hassan Jameel, Deputy President and Vice Chairman of Abdul Latif Jameel, commented:
“At Abdul Latif Jameel, we are proud to be partnering with Greaves Electric Mobility at such an exciting time for India’s EV market. Greaves’ forward-looking management team saw the opportunities in two and three-wheeler electric vehicles earlier than most and the company has quickly established a market-leading reputation for the performance and quality of its products in both the B2B and B2C markets.
“Its commitment to innovation and sustainability reflects our own, and we look forward to continuing to work with them in the next stage of their journey, providing cleaner, more sustainable – and crucially affordable – transport options to India’s population, and beyond.”