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Mahindra e20 Electric Car: Great News for Renewable Energy Enthusiasts!

Posted on
  • Tuesday, 19 March 2013
  • by
  • Rajesh K
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  • The Mahindra Reva e20 Electric Car has been launched yesterday (March 18, Monday) in 8 cities across India. This is great news for renewable energy enthusiasts in India because, you guessed it right, electric cars can be charged using solar panels/micro wind turbines!! The cost of Mahindra Reva e20 is tentatively fixed at Rs. 5.96 Lakhs (in New Delhi). The company says that the price in other cities will depend on subsidies allocated by the respective state governments. The price seems to be affordable for a 4-seater car, what say? 

    It seems. the Mahindra Reva e20 is powered by new generation Li-Ion batteries and 3-phase induction motors. The range of the battery car is expected to be around 100 KM per charge, and the charging time will be around 5 hours. It is possible to charge the car using any standard 15A electrical socket commonly found in homes and users can charge the car overnight, if they want to take it to their office daily.

    Hundred KM range seems to be good enough for city driving. You can't use it for long-distance driving, until the mobile charging infrastructure is ready in our highways or battery changing becomes common in petrol bunks. But you can always take a car/driver on hire for long-distance trips, as (in most cases) these are going to be occasional. 

    Mahindra Reva e20 also has an interesting feature called regenerative breaking that generates energy every time you apply breaks and even this energy will be stored in the batteries. Electric cars do not generate any pollution and they have zero-carbon emissions. Anyone who is environmentally conscious (everyone should be) would love it.

    This car is available in 6 colours. For every hour of charging, you add approximately 20 KM range. The Li-Ion battery used in the car is maintenance-free and has a longer life. Mahindra e20 smart phone app allows you to remotely lock/unlock the car, switch on/off the AC, have a look at the amount of charge left/plan your trip, and much more.

    Have a look at the video that explains what you can do with the smart phone app for your car,

    There are two models of Mahindra e20 being offered currently. The higher model comes with high-end JBL speaker system (4 speakers, 2 tweeters), infotainment system (DVD, MP3, bluetooth, iPod connectivity, etc) and rear-camera (for parking). You can see all the differences/features offered by the two models from here

    Electric cars are smooth and have a very quiet/simple operation, when compared to petrol or diesel cars.  There are many more advantages (and a few limitations) to electric cars. You can read about them from the link given in the previous sentence. 

    When you consider the economics, you only stand to gain. Running cost is very minimum and the maintenance costs is very low, for electric cars. More over, 

    Current electricity price: Rs. 4/unit.
    For a single charge, the car consumes: 9 units (approx).
    Cost for a single charge: Rs. 36. 
    Distance covered for a single charge: 80-100 KM (for Rs. 36).

    These are approximate numbers, but did you notice how economical they are, when compared to diesel/petrol cars? If you have some investment, you can buy solar panels (one-time cost) and use the electricity generated by solar panels to charge the batteries. This way, you can drive the electric car for free (well almost), for many years. Except batteries (that have limited life-span), there are no (major) maintenance charges for electric cars. Mahindra e20 comes with 3-year/60,000 KM warranty for batteries. Typically, their life is 5 years.

    The Mahindra e20 will be sold/serviced through the existing M&M dealerships. Mahindra is offering a program called Sun2Car where they will themselves size/install solar panels (required for fueling the car) at your location, at additional cost.

    If you need any additional information, refer to the Mahindra e20 website. They have a very detailed Frequently Asked Questions section there, which gives you answers for any questions you might have.

    If you want to buy a car in the near future, why not consider buying an electric car?? 
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