According to an insider source, commercial vehicle manufacturer, Ashok Leyland Ltd. is looking for its electric vehicle segment funding.
“The company recently shifted its electric vehicle operations to its subsidiary Switch Mobility to better capitalise on growth potential,” said CFO Gopal Mahadevan.
The board of directors of Ashok Leyland authorised the transfer of the electric vehicle business to Switch Mobility Automotive on November 13, on a slump sale basis for Rs 240 crore. The new business is based in Leeds, United Kingdom, and Chennai, India.
Ashok Leyland is seeking investments to expand its product line and develop innovative electric vehicle technologies. It also plans to release two compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicles in the fourth quarter of this fiscal year.
Vipin Sondhi, MD & CEO of Ashok Leyland, stated that “We are planning to launch two ICVs (intermediate commercial vehicle) trucks in the CNG segment in the fourth quarter of the current fiscal. After that, we will keep launching a new product every quarter and will be offering the CNG version in the light commercial vehicle (LCV) at a later stage,”
As the government pushes for electric vehicles to lower the country’s oil import bill and pollution, automakers are following suit.
Bajaj Auto, Mahindra & Mahindra, and TVS Motor Company are also seeking investments for the EV sector, while Tata Motors has secured funding already for EV manufacturing.
Switch Mobility majorly manufactures electric buses with 32-99 seats and can cover up to 300 kilometres in a single charge.
Switch also deals in the electric version of Dost and Bada Dost light commercial vehicles (LCVs) by Ashok Leyland. These LCVs can cover 150 kilometres in one-time charging with a payload of about 1,000 to 1,300 kg.
Mr Sondhi stated that ALL would pursue a three-pronged approach of foraying deeper into SAARC and GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) countries, expanding into African markets by selecting new partners, and targeting CIS and Southeast Asian countries for further expansion.
Mr Gopal Mahadevan stated that over 1,000 crores had successively decreased the net debt. It is currently valued at 3,112 crores.