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Tata Motors on the green path, every 3rd vehicle to be either CNG or EV

Automaker to increase share of CNG-powered vehicles without compromising on comfort, features

Tata Motors

BS Web Team New Delhi

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Approximately one in three passenger vehicles Tata Motors sells in the near-to-mid-term will either be gas- be electric-powered, as the automaker reduces reliance on fossil fuel-based technologies.

A Bain & Co report in December 2022 estimated that 35 per cent to 40 per cent of all vehicles sold in India will be electric by 2030, meaning the average annual sale of some 16 million new electric vehicles (EVs). Such predictions have prompted automakers to offer cleaner vehicles. Tata Motors will launch an exclusive EV showroom in March.

Tata Motors, like its competitors Maruti Suzuki and Hyundai Motor, sees great potential in the compressed natural gas (CNG) segment. Demand for CNG models is increasing due to improved availability of fuel, the launch of new models, and lower running costs.

March 2023 saw sales of CNG vehicles reach 30,000 units, triple the number from March 2021, according to data from the state-run Vahan dashboard.

Tata Motors having sold 6,516 EV vehicles in April 2023, the highest number of EV sales recorded by the company. 

According to a report in the Economic Times (ET), Tata Motors is set to introduce the Altroz iCNG, equipped with the company's patented "integrated mounting system for a vehicle". The company plans to launch another electric model in FY24. These developments are expected to drive the share of gas-powered models and battery-electric vehicles within Tata Motors' passenger vehicle portfolio to 15 per cent each, up from the current 8 per cent and 9 per cent respectively, within three to four years.

Shailesh Chandra, managing director of Tata Motors Passenger Vehicles and Tata Passenger Electric Mobility, stated in a release on Monday, 
“Customers are increasingly choosing alternate fuel options with the intent of economical as well as eco-friendly drive. CNG as a fuel with its wide availability and accessibility has gained lot of acceptance."

He added, "Today, we are delighted to launch the Altroz iCNG, an industry first offering which will redefine the CNG market by addressing the major concern on boot space. The Altroz iCNG is a testament to our deep understanding of the customer’s need and our engineering prowess. With the breakthrough of the twin-cylinder CNG technology and advance features we are expecting more personal segment buyers to strongly consider this option. Our multi-powertrain strategy in the Altroz portfolio today offers petrol, diesel, iturbo and iCNG, providing an array of options for the customers to choose from. The Altroz iCNG will bolster our expansive New Forever range and continue to sustain our growth momentum in passenger cars.”
Despite the practicality and cost-effectiveness of CNG models, they often lack aspirational appeal due to their limited features and compromised performance and boot space. Tata Motors aims to address these concerns with the introduction of its iCNG technology, offering high-end features in the Tiago and Tigor models. The company aims to redefine the CNG market by focusing on the major concern of boot space.

By placing twin cylinders under the luggage area, Tata Motors ensures that the cylinders are concealed, providing a boot space comparable to fossil-fuel cars. The twin-cylinder technology will be incorporated into all upcoming CNG models from the company.
In addition to its CNG initiatives, Tata Motors plans to solidify its leadership in the electric car market by introducing an electrified version of another Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) model during the current fiscal year. This is likely to be the electrified version of the Punch, the company's micro-SUV, although this has not been confirmed.

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First Published: May 26 2023 | 11:59 AM IST

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