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The electric car wave is going to be the next big thing for the automotive industry all over the world and the car makers all over the world have already started working toward the same and have begun working or have launched their electric powered models in the market. The initial cost of the electric vehicles are higher due to the technology being new and economy of scale currently not in the favor of electric car industry. Therefore, the higher initial price discourages a lot of people from buying electric cars. However, an Indian startup aims at solving this issue by retrofitting the cars with electric kits.
We are talking about the Hyderabad based startup E-Trio. Their unique method of retrofitting the cars with electric kits makes a normal fossil-fuel based car run on electricity. The lower initial cost of retrofitting the car already with the owner also is very appealing. Until now, the startup only focused on fleets of cars but now there are reports suggesting that a car retrofitted by the startup has been registered as a private car.
The leaked registration information of the car shows that it has been registered with a RTO in Telangana. The information shows us that the car with retrofitting that has been registered as a private vehicle is indeed a Maruti Suzuki Alto hatchback. To let readers know, the startup E-Trio says that it is the first company in India to have ARAI’s permission to retrofit cars with electric kits. Until now, the company only offers such retrofitting electric kits for Maruti Alto and WagonR.
The aforementioned registration certificate states that the retrofitted car initially was a Maruti Suzuki Alto that was registered in 2006 as a 5-seater BS-III vehicle. The information further states that the car is now electric and runs on battery. The Hyderabad startup also has retrofitting electric kits for Maruti Dzire and plans to bring ARAI certified kits for Tata Indica, Hyundai Santro, and Maruti Suzuki Ritz among others in the future.
ARAI already permits retrofitting of cars with CNG and LPG kits, but they have to be properly endorsed on the registration certificate but the electric retrofitting of the car is different than fitting it with a CNG/LPG kit. Unlike the CNG/LPG retrofitting, the electric retrofitting involves replacing the engine of the car and installation of rechargeable batteries under the body of the car. E-Trio is currently using the Li-Po batteries and are currently imported. However, the startup aims at making the batteries in India to keep costs in check.
The electric retrofitting does not messes with the car’s features, rather the car gets a new instrument console that displays relevant information about the charge left in the vehicle among others. Currently, the startup’s retrofitted cars come with a 150 kms range, but that can be extended on owner’s wish. The charging times for the retrofitted batteries are around 4-5 hours.