Tamil Nadu based emote Electric, set up in 2011 makes high-performance electric vehicles in India. emote Electric is a design-centric and also a customer-centric company. With an agenda to protect the environment, it offers customers a thrilling riding experience at the same time. At emote Electric, they focus on advancing humanity on the path toward an Eco-Friendly future. Emote Electric is the 1st Indian EV startup to export vehicles and is unique in having B2B and B2C products available for a worldwide demographic. During an interaction with Nitisha; Pranav Singanapalli, Founder & CEO, emote Electric talks about electric vehicles and its potential in the Indian market.
Kindly explain emote electric as a company and its special offerings.
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Emote Electric is an award-winning full-stack E-2W manufacturer disrupting the transport sector with Smart Geared e-motorcycles that offer an easy transition to EVs for businesses and individuals alike
Emote Electric offers electric motorcycles for value-conscious consumers and businesses, primarily in India, South East Asia and East Africa. These motorcycles offer better features and specification at a very competitive prices, due in part to design optimizations and the innovative use of a gearbox in the electric drivetrain.
The indigenously developed “Surge” and “LCM” e-motorcycles pay for itself in 3 years while offering far better load carrying capacity, flexibility and futuristic features. It accelerates the transition to electric by lowering mental and financial barriers, and blurring the line between petrol and electric motorcycles.
With growing EV companies in India, the USP of emote electric?
Emote’s biggest differentiator and USP is our 4 speed gearbox. Our motorcycles are the only EV in India to have a multispeed gearbox and one of only a handful across the entire planet.
Our second major USP is the huge range of 500km/charge – the largest of any EV in India. This is made possible by innovation in chassis design, battery design and other associated systems throughout the bike. We feature a unique modular, swappable, expandable design with 3 battery bays within the bike. While the bike offers full performance with only one battery pack, the 2 additional battery provisions allow for a greater range for those who want it. Multiple batteries can also be charged in parallel at a Bharat standard DC-001 charging station for the industries fast quick charge rate of 500km/hour of charge time.
According to you, the scopes and challenges in the indigenous EV market and innovation, R&D strength of emote electric?
Scope is quite positive. We think the time for EVs has come and we expect to be one of the companies leading this change. The pitfall of course is related to unfamiliarity, range anxiety, and safety concerns sparked by the recent spate of EV battery fires. These teething troubles is to be expected, however there is a good risk of the industry being retarded by a year or two due to fear, uncertainity and doubt that these incidents create. Emote is very strong from a R&D perspective. We designed and developed most major systems in the motorcycle including the brand new gearbox design – which has little similarity to existing petrol vehicle gearboxes. Our innate understanding of the various sub-systems and how they interact with each, allows us to make quick modifications and adapt very quickly to requirements. We also work with tier 1 and tier 2 suppliers across the globe in order to secure the best components for the most reasonable price.
How was the business in the year 2020-2021 and what will be the future marketing strategy?
Business in the year 2020-21 was impacted a fair bit. Being pre-revenue, there no impact. However as we were in the final stages of part design and tool manufacturing, we had a lot of trouble getting production samples from suppliers -with timelines getting extended manyfold. Compounding problems related to supply chain and shipping challenges has meant that we have had to push back our launch date multiple times, delaying our launch in the market and revenue generation.
Currently, we have not been spending on marketing. As we gear up to launch, we will be spending a bit on getting the word out through digital as well as traditional channels. Our marketing strategy is focused towards getting the word out about our product. Once that happens, the strength of our product alone is enough to convert it into a sale.
India as an EV market for emote electric?
India has great potential. High fuel prices and a government that recognises all too well that, our massive fuel import bill is weighing down heavily on our growth and economic progress. As per a 2019 NITI Ayog report 80% of new 2 wheelers and 3 wheelers could be EVs by 2030. To reach that market share in 8 years’ time, requires a phenomenal growth rate. We are starting to see EVs gain significant traction now, with a far greater acceptance of EVs than what was the case only a few years ago. Many more are also considering EVs but are still on the fence owing to concerns about product quality, servicing, life cycle costs etc.
Our products cover the 100cc to -250cc market in India. This makes up the lion’s share of the motorcycle market in India. In these segments we are extremely competitive with current and future EVs and petrol bikes alike. In addition we also cater to businesses with fleets such as bike taxi and delivery services.
Any new projects you are planning to introduce and expansion plans?
We are planning on introducing a lower cost motorcycle aimed at the premium commuter market. This will be around the end of 2022 or early 2023. We have already developed a B2B focused motorcycle with the first units having being shipped to Eastern Africa just this month.
In H2 2023, we expect to have our maiden scooter offering ready. It will be India’s only scooter with a 2 or 3 speed electric drivetrain
We are already in the process of setting up our 1st production facility. It is one of many smaller facilities planned across India, instead of one large central facility. Soon we will have a final assembly facility located abroad as well.
How do you want to bring your brand in front of your customers, your media strategies and your ahead marketing strategies?
We as a brand have always been about cutting edge design and engineering. We are unafraid of complexity and are nimble. We have always valued honesty with the customers and treating them well. Our products are affordable and will continue to offer excellent value for money, even in the premium segments that we are initially targeting. Our marketing has always relied on word of mouth, and will continue to do so into the future. Our customers are our best ambassadors for our brand.
Kindly highlight the emerging trends in the electric vehicles industry.
We are seeing a wider acceptance of EVs, even in the premium category of vehicles. People are willing to pay a significant premium over equivalent petrol vehicles.
The battery pack and range of EVs is increasing, in part due to demands from the market related to range anxiety, and also facilitated by the higher price than the market is willing to bear now. Better access to financing for EV is helping support this premium.
There is also a slight move towards swappable batteries and we are likely to this accelerate in e2Ws and e3Ws. While current sales of non-removable battery bikes is dominant, this is likely to change as the market of those with easy access to home charging – (ground floor covered space etc.) gets saturated.