Ola Electric Numbers Continue To Create Doubts – Questions Raised About Bookings, Deliveries, Features And Range
Even though Ola Electric has commenced deliveries of its S1 and S1 Pro electric scooters, the company continues to face criticism on various fronts. Earlier, some customers who got their deliveries had shared the problems they faced.
Now questions are being raised about numbers related to deliveries and registrations. These don’t appear to match claims made by the company earlier. Bringing more transparency in consumer-related matters can help Ola Electric build that much needed trust and confidence.
In a tweet shared by Vinkesh Gulati (President, Federation of Automobile Dealers Association), questions have been raised about actual purchase numbers and total registrations. Actual registration numbers of Ola electric scooter till January 3, 2022 was less than 300. This is creating confusion, as to what is actually happening.
Ola’s update on deliveries
On December 31, Ola Electric CEO Bhavish Aggarwal had stated on Twitter that Ola electric scooters have been dispatched to all customers. While most have reached delivery centres, some are in transit or awaiting RTO registration process. There was some delay in registrations, as Ola is following an entirely digital process. This was something new for all stakeholders involved.
It is possible that registration numbers may increase in January 2022. Ola Electric is following an entirely new system of sales, deliveries and after-sales services. The company isn’t operating the standard dealership network.
Instead, sales are entirely online and the scooters will be delivered to customers at their address. After-sales services will be similar to onsite services currently available for appliances, electronic items, etc.
Option to upgrade to S1 Pro
Ola recently announced that all S1 customers will be able to upgrade to S1 Pro. What Ola is essentially doing is that S1 scooters are being delivered with the same hardware as that of S1 Pro. It includes the larger battery pack. However, S1 users will be able to access the additional features and range only after they pay upgrade charges of Rs 30k. This makes the price the same as that of S1 Pro.
As @OlaElectric begins deliveries, it's big promises are being put to test. The co says 4,000 scooters dispatched, but only 275 have been delivered to date. Customers also question its promise of 181km range vs the real world range of 135km under specific conditions@Parikshitl pic.twitter.com/hLGaPgTHvC
— CNBC-TV18 (@CNBCTV18News) January 3, 2022
Users who choose the upgrade option will be getting the new features and longer range activated via an OTA update. S1 Pro offers premium features such as faster charging, higher top speed, faster acceleration, hill hold assist, cruise control and Hyper mode.
From consumer’s perspective, the upgrade option appears to be a bit flawed. Although they are getting a larger capacity battery pack, they will be able to use only part of it. Riding around with a heavier battery and not able to unlock its full power is likely to adversely impact things like range, acceleration and top speed.
Along with efforts to streamline deliveries, Ola Electric is also working to expand its charging infrastructure. During 2022, around 4k charging stations are expected to go live. Most of these are being set-up at Bharat Petroleum fuel stations and residential complexes. As a bonus, Ola is offering free charging for S1 and S1 Pro users till June 2022.