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Retrofitted EVs: Indian jugaad that's cheap, clean, battery-powered

Rather than throwing heavy subsidies at new vehicles, the government should pluck the low-hanging fruit presented by a vibrant retrofitting industry

Electric scooter
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S Dinakar New Delhi
India has a history of jugaad, and retrofitting vehicles is one such manifestation of the legendary Indian skill. Not so long ago autorickshaws and small Marutis used to strap on subsidised LPG cylinders and power themselves to a cheap ride. There were the odd explosions, lives were lost, but the jugaad continued. Then compressed natural gas (CNG) was introduced in Delhi following a court order. Initially, customised CNG kits were fitted to conventional (internal combustion engine or ICE) autos cheaply, enabling commuting at less than half of what you would cough up for diesel. The industry is better organised now

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First Published: May 19 2022 | 6:05 AM IST

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