By Michael Elkins
According to a Reuters report over the weekend, US electric vehicle startup Fisker Inc (NYSE) will begin selling the company’s Ocean electric SUV in India next July. According to the company’s CEO, Henrik Fisker, the electric car maker could also start building its cars locally within the next few years.
Henrik Fisker told the media that the company wants to secure the first mover advantage. “Eventually, India will be fully electric. It may not go as fast as the US, China or Europe, but we want to be one of the first companies to come here,” Fisker said. He went on to explain that he expects electric vehicles to become more common in India by 2025-26.
Due to a lack of charging infrastructure, as well as high battery costs, electric vehicles make up only 1% of the country’s 3 million annual vehicle sales market. However, the Government of India aims to increase this share to 30% by 2030 and is offering companies billions of dollars in incentives to build their electric vehicles and establish supply chains locally.
Electric vehicle giant Tesla (NASDAQ 🙂 initially planned to enter the market before eventually halting its plans when the company failed to secure lower import tariffs.
“Ultimately, if you want to get a bit bigger in India, you almost have to start building a car here or at least do some assembly,” Fisker said.
While Fisker admitted it is “too expensive” to import cars into India, the company wants to use Ocean to build its brand, with its premium pricing likely to limit numbers, he said.
Fisker’s next electric vehicle, the five-seater PEAR, is being considered for production in India. However, plans for PEAR in India will have to wait until at least 2026.
He said the company is exploring a real estate space to open a showroom in New Delhi and meeting with auto component suppliers to get spare parts for its global production.
“We’re really starting to build some relationships,” Fisker said.