Copyright FOURIN, Inc. 2023
India’s Electric Motorcycle Sales in 2022
In 2022, the number of newly registered electric motorcycles (sales data is substituted with new registration data) in India expanded rapidly to 624,192 units, a 4.1-fold increase from the previous year. The market share of electric motorcycles went up 2.9 percentage points to 4.0% in 2022. According to India’s automobile manufacturers association SIAM, the size of India’s motorcycle market (wholesale volume) rose to 15.61 million units in 2022, an increase of 7.4% year-on-year. Due to stricter loan screening triggered by the large number of non-performing loans, the market recovery has been slow, with the market remaining at just over 70% of the 2018 peak of 21.64 million units, so the growth of electric motorcycles is truly outstanding.
There are four reasons behind the expansion of new registrations of electric motorcycles: 1 Purchase subsidies increased by 1.5 times from 10,000 INR per kWh of battery to 15,000 INR per kWh in June 2021, 2 gasoline prices rose further in 2022 as a result of Russia's invasion of Ukraine, 3 new players and new products entered the market in 2022 and 4 compared to gasoline motorcycles, electric motorcycles have more smart functions such as voice operation and key operation with a smartphone.
In particular, the impact of soaring gasoline prices was remarkable, with monthly new registrations surpassing 50,000 units for two consecutive months in March and April 2022. However, with the rapid spread of electric motorcycles, there were frequent fire accidents caused by batteries, so recalls were implemented. Due to deteriorating product image, sales fell below 50,000 units for the next three months from May to July. However, from August onwards, Ola Electric Technologies launched a low-priced version of its flagship model, the S1, and actively conducted sales promotion campaigns. As a result, in October and November, electric motorcycle sales exceeded 70,000 units, reaching nearly 80,000 units.
Two companies, Okinawa Autotech and Hero Electric Vehicles, which entered the Indian electric motorcycle market from early, have steadily solidified their presence and competed for the top market share until 2021. However, Ola, which entered the market in 2021, rapidly increased sales, surpassing both Okinawa and Hero Electric and taking top position in 2022. Ola's sudden rise was due to the introduction of the S1 and bold sales promotions such as generous cashbacks of 5,000 to 10,000 INR and loans that did not require a down payment. In addition, it was discovered that both Okinawa and Hero Electric did not meet the local procurement requirements for specified parts, which is required to receive purchase subsidies. As a result, all of their products were excluded from subsidies from October.
In the spring of 2023, Ola plans to launch a model with a price tag of 73,000 INR, which is lower than the purchase cost of an average gasoline scooter of 85,000 INR. In addition, fuel costs are likely to remain high, so electric motorcycle sales are expected to continue to increase.