MG Motor unveils cheapest EV in India

Jingyue Hsiao, DIGITIMES Asia, Taipei 0

Credit: AFP

UK-based MG Motor unveiled the most affordable EV in India, looking to seize the opportunity of a rapidly-rising market as the International Energy Agency recommends cheaper models for developing countries.

According to TechCrunch and The Economic Times, MG Motor introduced Comet EV with ex-showroom prices starting at INR798,000 (US9,700). Comet EV offers a range of 230 kilometers on a single charge and will be manufactured at MG Motor's plant in Halol, Gujarat.

Comet EV is the second EV after ZS EV MG Motor launched in 2022 and is cheaper than Tata Motors' Tiago EV, which starts at an ex-showroom price of INR869,000. The Economic Times quoted Rajeev Chaba, president of MG Motor India, saying that the UK-based company owned by China's SAIC will not lose money on this, adding that they can make a little bit of profit by selling over 80,000 units in 2023.

According to MG Motor, Comet EV has a localization rate of over 50% and is on the way to reaching 60% by the end of the year. Chaba said that Comet EV is designed for those who commute within a city, suggesting those who need a longer range consider its ZS EV instead.

The International Energy Agency (IEA) on April 26 released "Global EV Outlook 2023", saying that there was a notable boom in electromobility in 2022 in India, Thailand, and Indonesia, where sales of EVs more than tripled compared with 2021 and reached nearly 80,000.

Still, IEA said in the report that EVs are typically too expensive to take off in developing economies, which are usually quick to adopt low-cost energy technology products, adding that the future of mass-market electrification hinges on smaller, more affordable EVs.

According to IEA, BEV sales reached nearly 50,000 in 2022, four times more than in 2021, with Tata Motors constituting over 85% of BEV sales in India. Despite Tata's leadership in India's BEV market, MG Motor is quietly catching up with its offerings. According to Vahan Dashboard, although lagging behind Tata by a large volume in its EV sales in India, MG Motor has been the second-largest EV brand by sales volume.

MG Motor set up MG Motor India in 2019. MG Motor India announced in March 2022 that it planned to reach 25% of Indian sales from EVs and was looking to invest INR20 billion (US$240 million) in the South Asian country to ramp up production capacity, EV product launch, and procure locally-made components.

Electric four wheeler sales in India (unit)





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Source: Vahan Dashboard