Electric vehicles (EVs) are no longer science fiction. Scientific achievements in this space have led to the mainstreaming of EVs in the United States, Israel and some European countries. India isn’t far behind either with Mahindra-Reva, Hero Electric and other domestic OEMs leading the front. Durable lithium ion batteries, fast charging networks, efficient chassis design and electric drive trains are key links in the EV value chain and extensive technological progress has been made in all these areas. However, for EVs to truly lead GhG reduction in Indian Industry and have a positive impact on the country’s energy security, the integration of smart grids and renewable energy feeds into these grids are a must. In fact, without these two critical components, the introduction of EVs into the current ecosystem would be an ecological burden and lead to greater GhG emissions since energy will be derived from a predominantly coal powered and inefficient energy grid.
Therefore, this study undertaken by YES BANK and TERI-BCSD critically analyses the EV value chain, identifying hidden triple bottom line risks and highlighting innovative clean technologies and business models that mitigate those risks, thereby making the value chain more attractive from lending and investment perspectives. The paper also concludes with a sobering and pragmatic analysis of the current and projected EV scenario in India versus the internal combustion engine.