In its latest electrification effort, Uber announced that it will be deploying ‘hundreds of electric cars’ in India in partnership with local manufacturer Mahindra and Mahindra.
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Madhu Kannan, Uber’s chief business officer for India and emerging markets, told reporters on Friday that they are starting with pilot programs in Delhi and Hyderabad to be deployed by March:
“We are extremely excited about our collaboration with the Mahindra Group to deploy this electric vehicles pilot in India. Aligned with the government’s vision, we aim to build a more sustainable future of mobility, moving more people needing on-demand services with fewer, fuller, and more efficient vehicle trips. We see a key role for high efficiency vehicle technologies, and therefore believe that this collaboration with Mahindra, the pioneers in the electric vehicles space, will be truly beneficial not just for Uber but for our driver partners, riders and the cities we operate in.”
So far, Mahindra’s EVs have been limited to fairly small and cheap vehicles – starting with e20, which starts at 746,225 Indian Rupee ($11,500 USD).
The e20, along with the new eVerito electric sedan, will be used for Uber’s program:
Uber drivers in those markets will have access to incentives to buy the vehicles and use them to give rides to local Uber users.
The ride-hailing company has been making a few moves in the EV space recently, like with deploying 50 new Tesla vehicles in its Dubai fleet and incentivizing its 40,000 drivers in London to switch to electric cars.
An effort like that is especially important in India since the country set the goal to push its entire fleet to be electric vehicles by 2030.
The country, which has become an important automotive market in recent years, is pushed toward this aggressive goal after some severe air quality issues.
Earlier this month, the smog was so bad in Delhi that in caused a massive pileup of cars as drivers couldn’t see in front of them on the road. Needless to say, EVs can’t come soon enough in India.