Bengaluru, NFAPost: Tesla’s co-founder and current chief executive Elon Musk earlier this year stated that his company would enter the lucrative Indian market next year, and earlier this week that sentiment was backed up by India’s Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari.
In October, Tesla CEO, Elon Musk had made a claim of introducing the electric vehicle brand in India in 2021. Elon Musk, in response to a tweet promised to introduce the brand in Inida by 2021. The new report confirms the same.
Speaking on Monday, Nitin Gadkari announced that the the US electric car producer would possibly set up a production line in the country if demand were strong enough, although it is understood that infrastructure in India will be an issue.
Nitin Gadkari is already known to be pushing the concept of green cars in the country in a bid to reduce the nation’s massive dependence on imported oil, and India has already achieved the enviable position of having an energy surplus each year.
According to sources, Tesla will debut in India with its most affordable offering Model 3 which also forms the bulk of the company’s sales across the globe. Model 3 was introduced in the year 2017 and according to the report, the car will come with an estimated entry price of Rs 55 lakh.
“American auto major Tesla will have its distribution facility (sale centres) for its cars in India from next year and considering the demand it would look into setting up of manufacturing here. India has the potential to become the largest electric vehicle producer in the world in the next five years,” Nitin Gadkari said.
He also added that the Centre intends to have an electric vehicle sales penetration of 30% for private cars, 70% for commercial cars, 40% for buses, and 80% for two and three-wheelers by 2030 by providing various incentives, which are likely to drive the growth of EV market in India.
In working towards these numbers, Nitin Gadkari also said that India plans to build e-charging facilities at all of the nation’s 69,000 gas stations to help alleviate issues related to ‘refuelling’ and called the possibility of electric vehicle penetration into the Indian market a “win-win situation” for all involved.
It i interesting to note that the leading electric car manufacturer had plans to bring the brand to India in 2016. As part of the plan, Tesla even had began bookings for its Model 3.
However, later the company decided not to launch it due to lack of proper infrastructure. Tesla will be importing the cars as completely built units (CBU) and won’t be selling them via dealerships. Instead, the company will focus on online sales.
Tesla Model 3, which is to be launched in India, comes with a range of 500 km and a top speed of 162 Kmph. The car can accelerate from zero to 100 kmph in a matter of 3.1 seconds. So far, there’s no official confirmation regarding the launch dates.