The Kona Electric is an expensive EV because of being an import. However, Hyundai does have India-made EVs that will be heavily localised and thus affordable in the pipeline.
Hyundai is planning a number of electric vehicles manufactured in India under the so-called “Smart EV” project. The first of these models is likely to be launched in 2022. Citing S S Kim, MD, Hyundai (India), a new report from The Economic Times says that the company plans to localise as much content of its EVs as its ICE vehicles, which is over 90%. Kim is already holding discussions with companies to establish an EV ecosystem in the country.
Kim said that the Hyundai is already conducting research to understand how much would Indian customers be willing to pay for its EVs. Meanwhile the company's R&D centre in Namyang, South Korea is conducting studies to gauge the optimum range and chalk out costing for its EVs. The first Hyundai EV manufactured in India, if things go as per plan, will break cover in concept form at Auto Expo 2022.
Expect the Smart EV project to include at least three models, an electric SUV, an electric sedan and an electric hatchback. A Hyundai Venue EV could be one of these models. Kim had said in 2018 that a pure electric Hyundai Venue is under consideration. Maybe Hyundai will introduce the pure electric variant of the Venue around its mid-cycle refresh, adopting the same strategy which Tata Motors used for the Nexon EV.
As for the Hyundai Kona Electric, it is expected to become more expensive soon. It is imported in knocked-down kits from South Korea. “Some plastic parts and some interior parts” are localised, Kim said. The basic customs duty on knocked-down EVs will be increased by 5% to 10% in April, which will likely lead to a price hike.
Hyundai Kona Electric - Prices*
- Kona Electric - INR 23,71,858
- Kona Electric dual-tone - INR 23,90,608