The electric three wheeler segment made a comeback after two years to scale past sales of its ICE counterparts and market share of 53 percent
The pandemic situation in the country and across the globe over the past two years had taken a toll on vehicle sales. The electric vehicle segment, which was still in its nascent stage took a beating with sales crashing 37 percent in FY21.
However, FY22 has seen sales come back even stronger to the extent that it has even beaten sales of its ICE counterparts with electric three wheelers registering 101 percent growth at 1,77,874 units. The segment is supported both by central and state government subsidies that have played a major role in changing buyer sentiments in its favor.
Electric Three Wheeler, Rickshaw Sales – May 2022
In May 2022, the electric three wheeler segment saw sales of 21,911 units, as against 19,597 units sold by its ICE counterparts. Market share also increased from 45 percent to 53 percent and this comes at a time when there is added pressure on business to adopt a greener approach while strong government incentives add further impetus to the three wheeler electric segment to introduce newer and more advanced products.
The rise in petroleum products also led to increased sales of electric vehicles in India and as per data received, nearly 47 percent of three wheelers sold in the past three months were electric, 23 percent were CNG and the rest were petrol and diesel powered models.
Spiraling cost of fuel led to higher cost of ownership for buyers in the diesel segment by about INR 40,000-INR 50,000. This also put added pressure on EMI payments that increased to Rs 9000 from Rs 6000 leading to buyers putting off such purchases.
Electric Three Wheelers
The added growth in the electric mobility e-commerce space has been aided by increased demand for first and last mile connectivity, cargo, waste management and freight loaders. The fact that OEMs also offer easy swapping of discharged batteries for fully charged batteries has also helped this segment while
Growth in electric three wheeler sales is in a less timeframe as compared to that seen in the car and scooter segment. The pandemic had spurred up consumer interest in conserving energy and saving the environment. There was also a spurt in e-business and logistic requirements during this period, while economies of cost coupled with easy charging facilities and government subsidies have added further impetus to this segment.
Seeing this outstanding demand for electric three wheelers, several automakers have jumped into the fray while the more established OEMs are adding to these products more than ICE models. For example, Piaggio marked its entry into the electric cargo segment with Ape E-city and Ape E-Xtra FX range. Piaggio, currently the second largest automaker in the three wheeler space offers a total of five electric models. Bajaj Auto is also set to launch its e-rickshaw and the prototype was revealed to be powered by 48-volt swappable Lithium-ion batteries that offered a range of 120 km. Mahindra is a leader in the three wheeler electric space with Mahindra Alpha Mini, Mahindra Treo Zor and electric Mahindra Treo.
Like Piaggio, Bajaj and Mahindra there are new-comers in this segment that have introduced electric three wheelers. Atul Auto offers a massive range of three wheelers in the passenger and cargo vehicles segments while Lohia Auto also offers a good range of electric 3-wheelers in the cargo and passenger segments in India.