The reducing popularity of shared mobility in the light of the COVID-19 outbreak has led to a slump in fleet sales of electric cars. Tata Motors expects growth in individual sales of electric cars due to a rise in personal mobility demand to offset the same.
Fleet customers were initially expected to drive the market growth of electric cars in India, as these models are quite expensive for individual customers without FAME II incentives. The pandemic has sharply reduced the preference for shared mobility due to the fear of COVID-19 infection and many companies offering employees a work-from-home option. Post the COVID-19 era, a higher health and hygiene concern could result in lower usage of fleet mobility compared to the pre-COVID era.
Whatever EV makers are losing in fleet sales could be made up by growth in individual sales, with more people choosing safe private transport now and even in the post-COVID era. “With personal mobility gaining traction over shared mobility for personal well-being and safety concerns we are also witnessing a shift in mindset towards after cleaner environment,” Shailesh Chandra, President, Tata Motors (PVBU), told carandbike.com recently.
The Nexon EV, designed for individual customers, is the best-selling electric car in India right now. In the first half of FY2021 (April-September 2020) Tata Motors sold 1,151 units of the Tata Nexon EV. The Tata Tigor EV, which is targeted mainly at fleet customers, saw a lacklustre sale of just 100 units during the same period. With the launch of the Tata Altroz EV next year and new state subsidies being announced, the sale of Tata electric cars should grow significantly in 2021.