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Indian electric two-wheeler manufacturer, Ather Energy, has just signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Government of Tamil Nadu. The MoU was signed at the Investment and Skill Development Conclave held at Chennai.
The MoU will allow Ather Energy to set up a manufacturing facility that measures four lakh square feet. The new manufacturing facility will be set up at Hosur, and will have the full support of the Government of Tamil Nadu under it's Electric Vehicle Policy.
Ather Energy's new facility will cater for manufacturing of electric vehicles, and will cater for the company's Lithium-ion battery manufacturing as well. Manufacturing Lithium-ion batteries will be a key focus area for the Ather Energy going forward.
Ather Energy will use the opportunity to create value in the sector, and will create job opportunities in the region. The company expects to create as many as 4,000 jobs over the next five years.
Ather Energy has also been investing in fast charging infrastructure in Bangalore and Chennai. Chennai has ten fast charging stations at the moment, and is in the process of adding more. The company is also planning to expand in to Hyderabad, Pune, Delhi and Mumbai in the coming year.
Tarun Mehta, the Chief Executive Officer at Ather Energy said that the company was scaling up rapidly, and that growth requires a bigger production facility. The new facility will allow for the company to meet demand over the next few years.
Mr Mehta said, "Tamil Nadu has been a hub for automobile manufacturing, and they have been working closely with us in their effort to build an EV ecosystem. A manufacturing facility at Hosur was an ideal choice considering that, it is close to our Research & Development facilities in Bangalore and most of the existing and potential future supply base is operating in the region. The availability of a built-up option of our desired scale and proximity helped in the decision making."
Ather Energy opened pre-orders for its Chennai clientele during July this year, and the company says that they are full until December. Pre-orders are now open for the third batch of Ather 450 electric scooters, with deliveries scheduled between February and March 2020.
The Ather 450 is the only offering from the company. Ather Energy offered the Ather 340 electric scooter but discontinued it because 99 percent of buyers chose the 450 model. The company is currently working on a second, more affordable scooter for the Indian market.
The Ather 450 is powered by 2.4kWh lithium-ion battery that produces 5.4kW of power and 20.5Nm of torque. The company says that the top speed on the scooter is 80 kilomoters per hour, and it offers a range of 75 kilometers over a full charge.
The Ather 450 features a parking assist, seamless charging, and a seven-inch digital instrument cluster that offers onboard navigation. Owners can push navigation from their phones to the instrument cluster via a smartphone application. The app also allows owners to monitor the vehicle's health, and check the battery status. The Ather 450 is currently priced at Rs 1.07 lakh (ex-showroom, India).
Thoughts About The MoU Signed Between Ather Energy And The Government Of Chennai
This MoU will certainly allow for a creation of more jobs in the Hosur area. Congratulations to Ather Energy and to the Government of Tamil Nadu. We look forward to seeing more Ather Energy vehicles on the roads.