After scaling back the 10,000 electric car order by 70%, EESL is now set to procure 250 electric cars
EESL tender states ‘Procurement of 250 Electric Cars with 3-years Standard warranty and comprehensive AMC up to Eight Years – Design, Manufacture, On site Supply and Maintenance Support for Electric Cars Pan India Basis.’
The requirement is for 100 Nos. of 4-wheeler E-Cars with more than 4M Length & range equal to or more than 300 KMs and 150 Nos. of 4-wheeler E-Cars with less than 4M Length & range equal to or more than 250 KMs.
At the time, it was noted, ‘Open Competitive Bidding will be conducted in accordance with ADB’s Single Stage: Two-Envelope Bidding Procedure and there is no country restriction and universal procurement will apply.’ Submissions are to be completed by 3:00 pm, August 7, 2020.
At roughly the same time, General Financial Rules 2017 was amended to impose restrictions on bidders from countries that share a land border with India on grounds of defence of India, or matters directly or indirectly related thereto including national security. The order defines that any bidder from such countries sharing a land border with India are eligible to bid if the bidder is registered with a registration committee to be constituted by the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT). Political and security clearance from Ministries of External and Home Affairs respectively is mandatory.
As per the tender, length requirement specifications determine, which manufacturers can bid for which category. However, the smaller cars do not have a drive range of 250 kms. When EESL first began placing orders, it was the Mahindra eVerito, and Tata Tigor EV in the limelight.
Then came Hyundai Kona. With a battery almost three times of available EV cars competing for the EESL tender, Kona has a low running cost, and is a comfy drive. Hyundai Kona EV was launched in June 2019, and by October last year, an order for 10 units had been placed by EESL at a reported cost of Rs 23.71 lakhs. At the time, 4 units had been delivered.
The following month, EESL scaled back its electric car order by 70 percent to 3,000 units. This was attributed to cancellation from Andhra the biggest customer, as there had been a change of guard in governance. In January 2020 soon after launch, when delivering the first unit to EESL, MG Motor India said it had received orders for 5 MG ZS EVs.
In 2017, Energy Efficiency Services (EESL) had placed an order for 10k e-sedans from Tata Motors (Tigor) and Mahindra (Verito) to be supplied by March 2019. Range issues and not so robust demand, meant the supply date was extended to March 2020. At the time, about 2,000 units were supplied.
With extension to March 2020 deadline, it was decided whatever units would be delivered by timeline would close the order. 1,000-odd units were expected by March 2020. With Covid-19 pandemic lockdown announced in March end, it’s not yet known how many vehicles were delivered, and what the final order closed at. EESL is aware that existing and new players have planned EV launches at varying price points.