India close to finalising incentives under new battery swap scheme


The Indian government is expected to finalise incentives under its new battery swap scheme for electric vehicles (EVs) within the next two months. India said on Tuesday it will introduce a new policy to promote swapping, a service that allows EV drivers to replace depleted battery blocks for freshly charged ones at swap stations. This is faster than charging the vehicle and reduces range anxiety for drivers.

A battery is also the most expensive part in an EV and swapping allows companies to offer it as a service through lease or subscription models, bringing down the cost of owning and operating the vehicle, industry executives say.

The government is likely to offer EV owners an incentive of up to 20 percent of the total subscription or lease cost of the battery and this will be in addition to what they already get for buying clean vehicles, the person said. In India, oil giant Reliance Industries has formed a joint venture with Britain’s BP to offer battery swapping. Motorbike maker Hero MotoCorp and Taiwan’s Gogaro have also partnered to set up swap stations, and the service is offered by start-up Sun Mobility as well.

The government will also define battery design and charging standards for companies that want to set up swap stations. This is to ensure the batteries can be used across EV models of different automakers, the official said.