Murugappa Group to enter EV sector via TI Clean Mobility, to launch e-3Ws, e-tractors
Chennai-based diversified industrial corporation Murugappa Group has announced that it will soon enter the electric vehicle (EV) segment as its recently formed arm TI Clean Mobility (TICM) will introduce electric three-wheelers this August/September.
TICM, a subsidiary of the group's Rs. 12,060-crore engineering company Tube Investments of India Ltd (TII), has planned an initial investment of Rs. 200 crore, which will be made in manufacturing operations and others relating to the EV business. TICM will focus on producing and selling electric three-wheelers and electric tractors under its existing ebike brand 'Montra'.
This is the second foray by the group into the EV segment. In 2008, TII launched electric scooters under the brand name BSA. Due to slow growth and withdrawal of government incentives, the company discontinued this business. However, the company believes three-wheelers and tractors are set to witness disruption due to favorable cost economics and other benefits.
"We will launch three products, including passenger and cargo variants, in the electric three-wheeler segment," said Arun Murugappan, Executive Chairman of Tube Investments of India. "The initial range of 3-wheeler products would feature three variants in the passenger segment and three variants in cargo and e-rickshaw segments," the company said in its latest annual report.
The vehicles have undergone various tests and trials over the past couple of years and will be produced out of its factory at Ambattur in Chennai. "The EV plant will have a capacity of 75,000 units per annum initially and we will keep investing in capacity depending upon the demand and market growth," said Murugappan.
TICM has developed a distribution network in 40 locations, and it will be ramped up to 100 by the end of this fiscal.
While it has taken the organic route for the entry of electric three-wheelers, the company has acquired a controlling stake in Hyderabad-based e-tractor maker Cellestial E-Mobility Pvt Ltd, at about Rs.161 crore, for the production and sale of electric tractors.
"We are building a factory in the outskirts of Chennai for producing electric tractors," said Murugappan.
The tractors would be launched under the brand Cellestial Egati. For the farming segment, two variants are being developed to address different power requirements, said the annual report.