The country’s biggest car maker, Maruti Suzuki, said today that it is planning to target the electric vehicles (EVs) market. Maruti said that it is currently evaluating market conditions and consumer preferences and as soon as significant opportunities present themselves, Maruti would aggressively pursue them. The company said that it is ready to make investments in developing EVs, if the markets present the right opportunity. Maruti said that its decision to enter the EVs market would depend a lot on consumer preference, which at this time is tilted towards petrol and diesel cars. The decision to target the EVs market makes good business sense since GST on such vehicles is only 12 percent. In comparison, petrol cars attract GST of 29 percent whereas hybrid cars attract GST (and cess) of 43 percent.
While speaking to shareholders at the company’s 36th annual general meeting, Maruti chairman R C Bhargava appreciated the government’s efforts to promote the use of electric vehicles. He said that electric vehicles will help reduce environmental damage in the long run. It may be recalled that the government has set the deadline for 2030 to have all electric vehicles on the roads. “Your company will not hold back in the segment. As soon as we can determine the customer preference, we will come up with such models. Meantime, the focus will be to increase fuel efficiency and bring new technologies,” said Bhargava. Maruti has already announced an investment of Rs 1,200 crore in April this year for setting up an automotive lithium-ion battery manufacturing unit in India.