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Hyundai is planning to partner with India's largest cab aggregator, Ola for electric mobility in the future. According to Livemint, Hyundai will use Ola as a 'test bed' for the development of electric vehicles, which is expected to be introduced by 2021.
The electric vehicles from Hyundai will be developed specifically for the cab aggregators, under their 'Smart EV' platform. According to reports, work on the electric vehicles have already begun, with the first product expected in 2021. Although, an earlier launch in 2020 is also on the cards.
According to people in the know, "The investment in Ola was made with an intent of testing these vehicles as electric mobility in India will gain traction in cab services rather than personal usage. The electric vehicles will be launched most likely in 2021, but with Hyundai's capability, it can hit the market in 2020 as well."
We had earlier reported that Hyundai had announced an investment of $300 million in Ola. According to this deal, both Hyundai and their sister company Kia will work with the Bangalore-based cab provider to develop electric vehicles as well as charging stations. These electric vehicles will then be used by Ola for their ride-hailing services.
According to reports, Hyundai can decide whether to supply electric cars under both brand names or choose to stick to a single brand. This decision, however, will be finalised at a later stage, as the products themselves are still under development.
A person also told Livemint, "Hyundai knows that in India and other parts of the world, electric mobility will be first adopted by cab service providers and other commercial fleet operators. The investment in Ola gives it a ready-made platform to test its vehicles. While, for Ola, this will help it induct quality but low-cost electric vehicles, custom made from one of the leading manufacturers in the world."
Hyundai though has currently confirmed the launch of the Kona electric for the Indian market. The Hyundai Kona electric SUV will be first EV from the brand and is expected to launch sometime this year.
Thoughts On Hyundai Developing EV For Ola
Hyundai understands the shift to electric vehicles in the country will start with cab aggregators. Hence to take lead in the electric mobility race in the country, Hyundai have partnered with Ola cabs. It will be interesting to see the kind of EV developments to come out of the partnership.