Maruti Suzuki electric vehicles
Maruti Suzuki electric vehicle prototypes

The Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH) has allowed registration of electric vehicles without pre-fitted batteries. For the promotion of electric two-wheeler and three-wheeler vehicles, there are recommendations brought to the notice of the ministry to delink the cost of battery (which accounts for 30-40 per cent of the total cost) from the vehicle cost.

Vehicles could then also be sold in the market without the battery. This will bring the upfront cost of the electric 2-wheelers (2W) and 3-wheelers (3W) to be lower than ICE 2 and 3W. The battery could be provided separately by the OEM or the energy service provider. In a letter to transport secretaries of all states and UTs, the ministry has clarified that vehicles without batteries can be sold and registered based on the type approval certificate issued by the test agency.

Further, there is no need to specify the make/type or any other details of the battery for the purpose of registration. However, the prototype of the electric vehicle and the battery (regular battery or the swappable battery) is required to be type approved by the test agencies specified under Rule 126 of the Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989.

Ather 450
Ather Energy's flagship 450 e-scooter

The attention of the states/UTs has been drawn to the relevant forms under Central Motor Vehicles Rules, 1989, (regarding sale certificate), road worthiness certificate issued by the manufacturer and road worthiness certificate issued for motor vehicles where fabrication of the body is done separately, required for the registration of motor vehicles under Rule 47 (Application for registration of motor vehicles), clearly specify Engine number/Motor number (In case of battery operated vehicles).

An official statement said the government is striving to create an ecosystem to accelerate the uptake of electric mobility in the country. It is time to come together to work jointly to achieve the broader national agenda to reduce vehicular pollution and oil import bill. This will not only protect the environment and cut the oil import bill but also provide opportunities to sunrise industries.