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At the ongoing MOVE Summit, Osamu Suzuki, Chairman, Suzuki Motors announced that the company will start testing electric vehicles in India from October 2018. The company is also expected to launch its first electric car in India, by 2020.
Suzuki also stated that the company will start road testing with a fleet of 50 EV prototypes, beginning next month. These prototypes will further help the company to develop electric cars, suited for the Indian traffic and climate conditions.
The development of electric vehicles by Suzuki is through their collaboration with Toyota Motors India.
Suzuki has already invested Rs 1,137 crore on its new lithium-ion battery plant in Gujarat, along with Toshiba and Denso.
The battery-plant will start production by 2020, providing a boost to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's ‘Make-in-India' campaign.
The batteries produced in Indiawill be then supplied to Suzuki's plant in Gujarat, which will further manufacture electric and hybrid cars for the Indian market.
Osamu Suzuki also confirmed at the summit, that the company's joint venture with Maruti, has now attained 100 percent localisation. The joint venture, between Maruti and Suzuki, first began in 1983.
At the event, the company also showcased the prototype of the electric WagonR. The WagonR will be the first electric vehicle offering from Maruti Suzuki. The car is slated for an Indian launch, sometime in 2020.
According to Financial Express, Osamu Suzuki, stated, "In order to increase the penetration of EV vehicles in India, it is obvious that it will be possible/practical only when sufficient charging infrastructure is developed."
He further added, "In order to realise sustainable mobility society, we need to address various issues other than electrification of vehicles, such as offering a safe and efficient mobility using information technology. I promise we will continue to make our best effort for resolving these issues."
Suzuki expects 30 percent of all vehicles in 2030 to be fully-electric. Apart from electric vehicles, Suzuki will also bring in CNG and hybrid cars in the Indian market.
Thoughts On Suzuki Starting EV Testing In India
Maruti Suzuki had already announced earlier in the year, that their first electric car will be a WagonR. The electric WagonR is scheduled to launch in India, sometime in 2020. Suzuki's Motorcycle division, also announced their first electric two-wheeler for the Indian market, around the same time.