South Korean auto major will invest a major share of its investment to strategise and produce an affordable electric vehicle for the Indian market.
The company is in talks with battery makers and suppliers to localise a large portion of manufacturing in order to bring the cost down and has earmarked $200 million investment for the purpose.
“We have the product and the technology, and we are reviewing the Indian market condition and the infrastructure situation here. We will come up with some options, which will be the best for the Indian market. It’s a No.1 priority in our future strategy," Hyundai India’s managing director S S Kim said.
The carmaker’s understanding comes from its experience with its electric SUV Kona, which was launched in 2019. “We had launched the Kona but we understand that it was for the super-premium buyer. To have meaningful volume, we need to be present in the mass segment and we are working towards that,” said Tarun Garg, director, marketing and sales at Hyundai India. Garg refused to give a timeline for the launch.
Garg said that Hyundai in India intends to present itself as a solution to mobility rather than a company which only sells cars. The carmaker, which has completed 25 years in the country, has invested over $4 billion in the Indian market and has clocked over nine million vehicle sales since its arrival. It has a sales network of 1,154 dealerships and 1,298 after-sales workshops across the country.
Tata Motors’ UK based subsidiary JLR announced this week that all Jaguar cars and six out of every 10 Land Rover models will go electric by 2030. The company will invest about 2.5 billion pounds ($3.5 billion) a year into electrification and related technologies.
The company’s parent firm Hyundai Motors and its affiliate Kia Motors announced in 2019 they would invest $35 billion into future mobility technologies including EVs and self-driving cars. They unveiled a new platform dedicated to manufacturing EVs last year and plan to launch 23 EV models by 2025.
Credit Suisse expects battery EVs to make up 11 per cent of Hyundai’s sales in 2025, up from 3 per cent last year. The company also is one of the biggest investors in hydrogen fuel cells. The car maker bought a majority stake last month in Boston Dynamics, the company famous for making dancing robots.