Govt allows sale of EVs without batteries, move likely to push battery-swapping

In what could bring down the cost of electric vehicles considerably, the Centre has allowed the sale and registration of electric vehicles without batteries. The move is likely to boost the battery-swapping industry at the same time.

The move comes after the ministry of road transport and highways received representation from the industry to delink the cost of battery (which accounts for 30-40% of the total cost) from the vehicle cost.

The prototype of the electrical vehicle and the battery (regular battery or the swappable battery) is however, required to be type approved by the test agencies specified under Rule 126 of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989.

“Consumers are being given a choice, if they want to purchase a vehicle without the battery, and use the battery on rent,” a senior transport ministry official told ET.

“It is clarified that vehicles without batteries can be sold and registered based on the type approval certificate issued by the test agency. It is further clarified that there is no need to specify the make or type or any other details of the battery for the purpose of registration,” the transport ministry said in a letter issued to principal secretaries of State transport departments on Wednesday.

A second official said that the promotion of battery swapping in the electric mobility sector was one of the main drivers of the decision. Companies like Ola, Sun Mobility, Lithion, are among companies operating in the battery swapping space in India.

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