About a week back, we reported that the home-grown cab aggregator Ola is sighting viable, sustainable transportation options to be deployed in India. It has been planning to introduce electric cabs and is soon to pilot the project across major cities here. Following the leads of the proposed project, it is now being said that Ola is in talks with a Hyderabad-based automobile manufacturer, GMW to drive its electric fleet.
Detailing the matter to ET, authorities familiar with the development said cities including Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, and Hyderabad will host a trial run for Ola’s electric vehicles, post its collaboration with GMW (which was a finalist in the fourth edition of The Tech Portal’s flagship startup pitching event called ‘Pitch Off’). As anticipated, the pilot phase is expected to begin in the next two-three months, possibly somewhere around July. They said,
We are in talks with Gayam Motor Works, which is assisting us with this project. Ideally, it’s like how you have seen Tesla in the United States. There will be plans to set up battery charging or swapping stations across cities. As of now, we are only looking at the top cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Hyderabad.
Moreover, Telangana’s IT secretary Jayesh Ranjan has said that Ola’s electric vehicles pilot project in Hyderabad will begin with 100 vehicles and will include cars, buses, and autos for the phase.
Established in 2011 by Gayam Brothers, GMW is an Indian automobile brand that designs, manufactures, and sells electric vehicles. The transportation range for the company includes electric bicycles and rickshaws, which is quite abrupt considering Ola does not employ any of these vehicles on its platform. It is also possible Ola may expand its range for introducing electric mobility within its ecosystem.
GMW had previously approached Uber for supplying a cheaper mode of transportation for its UberEATS meal delivery service. The company says it is currently working on introducing four-wheel vehicles under its umbrella as well. It is a possibility that Ola might support GMW’s endeavors for commencing its electric operations.
The sources even say that Ola has already partnered with the Mumbai-based automaker, Mahindra which manufacturers the electric vehicles under the brands E2O and eVerito. Last year, they also teamed up to offer drivers an integrated package with Mahindra cars, financing, insurance and services in order to provide a significant boost to entrepreneurial opportunities in the niche.
Ola’s current initiative will aid the government’s failing attempts to push the sales of electric cars. Apart from creating awareness, it would also lower energy import bills for the country, which are expected to cross $300 million by 2030.
Simran is The Tech Portal’s newest member, and has a keen interest in covering enterprise tech and app tech. She reports from our HQ @ Jaipur, India.