India to focus EV subsidies on ride sharing electric cars


The Indian government has been rethinking their FAME scheme designed to increase electric mobility. The new draft will channel funds away from grants for buying private electric cars and into EVs used by drivers working for shared mobility services such as Ola and Uber.

The reasoning behind the move is that those cars will be driven much more and thus are a more effective measure to decrease air pollution levels, particularly because so far there has been no substantial uptake of existing subsidies. Grants for electric two-wheelers and buses will remain untouched.

Sources quoted by the Times of India had said, that India’s government seeks to withdraw the cash incentives for private electric cars because it neither makes a “substantial difference in promoting sales nor serves the purpose of a clean environment”.

The belief in Delhi is that electric vehicles used by ride sharing services such as Ola and Uber “will run much more than private cars”.

The relaunch of India’s FAME (faster adoption and manufacturing of hybrid and electric vehicles) scheme is imminent.

While the inaugural FAME scheme had a budget of under Rs 1,000 crore, the ministry has proposed to raise it to over Rs 9,000 crore in the second phase. The money however, is to be well spent. Says an official in Delhi: “The real utility of electric vehicles is in public transport. How much are the private cars driven?” Or put differently: India rides with Ola.

India’s equivalent to Uber, Ola, is indeed pushing to electrify its fleet and will welcome this latest initiative. They aim to put up to 1 million electric vehicles on the road in India and have already established a dedicated electric mobility subsidiary called Ola Electric Mobility. They offer leasing services for electric cars and other LEVs to their drivers.


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