M&M to make electric vehicle components in-house

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Mahindra & Mahindra group will manufacture all key components that go into an electric vehicle itself as India’s largest utility vehicle maker prepares for the next transition in the automobile industry amid the government’s push to cut dependence on fossil fuels.

Image for representational purpose only

According to the Bloomberg Quint, the 13-billion group will set up joint ventures through Mahindra Electric Mobility Ltd., 98.8 percent owned by Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd., to make electric car parts, Pawan Goenka, managing director at M&M, said in an investor call after its second-quarter earnings.

The Anand Mahindra-led group will supply 150 of the 500 electric sedans in the first phase of the government’s order to procure 10,000 electric vehicles. Tata Motors Ltd.—that quoted the lowest price— will provide 350. The order is part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s push to make all cars electric by 2030 to lower oil imports and curb emissions.

Mahindra Electric has already finalised a long-term sourcing arrangement for lithium-ion cells. Setting up a battery assembling plant will reduce costs, Goenka added.

The most expensive component of an electric vehicle is the battery pack. The average cost of lithium-ion cell is around $200-230 per kwh, which is expected to nearly halve to around $120-125 in the two, three years, Goenka said.

M&M has already said that it will invest close to Rs 6 billion in technology and components for electric vehicles. In addition, it will also invest on product development. The company currently has 3,000 e-vehicles on the road. It aims to make all types of electric vehicles—from three-wheelers to buses.

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