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Electrotherm to launch new vehicles

Company may put in Rs 400 cr to expand steel, automobile facilities

BS Reporter  |  Mumbai/ Ahmedabad 

Electrotherm India Ltd, maker of various types of furnaces, induction heating/hardening equipment and allied products, is planning an investment of Rs 400 crore for expanding its steel and automobile facilities at its Samakhyali plant in Kutch.
Indus Elec-Trans, the company's automotive division, which manufactures electric battery-operated two-wheelers under the brand name 'Yo bikes', is also planning to launch its electric three-wheeler and a higher cc vehicle by March 2007.
"Our steel plant has a current production capacity of 0.24 million tonnes per annum, which would be increased to 0.46 million tonnes per annum by 2007 with the proposed investment," said Avinash Bhandari, director, Electrotherm.
Similarly, the automotive division, which has a current production capacity of 400-500 units per day will be ramped up to 1,500 units per day. The company would raise the money through mainly debts, internal accruals and equity, said Bhandari.
The company is planning to introduce newer models in the coming months following the success of Yo bikes, which registered sales of 10,000 units. The models launched so far are in the price range of Rs 15,000-Rs 29,000 and do not require any registration as they are restricted to a speed of 25 km per hour and a carrying capacity of 75-100 kg.
"We plan to launch a two-wheeler, which has a speed of 40 km per hour and a carrying capacity up to 150 kg, powered by 600 watts of electricity. This is to cater to a wider range of customers in our recently entered markets of Maharasthra, Rajasthan, Punjab, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh," said Bhandari.
The new vehicle is likely to be launched by March 2007 and will be priced around Rs 35,000. The focus on its automotive division comes in the wake of three new players joining the electric two-wheeler fray in the country.
The company claims to have sold around 12,000 units so far and is targeting sales of 60,000 units this financial year.
"On the basis of a study commissioned by us, the demand for electric vehicles could touch 1 crore vehicles by the end of 2011," said Bhandari.
The company's 34-seater hybrid bus prototype, with a carrying capacity of 100 passengers, would be sent to the Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) in six months' time for approval.
The prototype is already being used on the company's premises, said B K Vaishya, senior general manager, Electrotherm.

First Published: Tue, November 07 2006. 00:00 IST