Tesla India Factory May Be Coming & EV Sales Start Early 2021, Says Transport Minster

by Eva Fox December 28, 2020

Tesla India Factory May Be Coming & EV Sales Start Early 2021, Says Transport Minster

Photo credit: Backstage With Millionaires

Tesla will begin selling electric vehicles in India in early 2021, with first deliveries by June, as confirmed by Minister of Road Transport & Highways, Nitin Gadkari, in the Indian Express Idea Exchange Program. He also said that, after assessing the reaction to vehicle sales, Tesla could then consider internal assembly and manufacturing.

According to industry sources, Tesla is set to open an order configurator in India in early 2021 so that early buyers can get the cars by June, Tesmanian reported on December 27. Now the Minister of Road Transport & Highways of India has confirmed this information.

According to the information Tesmanian received earlier, all cars will be CBU (Completely Built-Up) and will be imported via sea route into India. The companies which do not have either an assembly plant or a platform for assembly, provide cars to the customers only by CBU. It is reported that Tesla will initially be able to deliver only 2,500 units. At the moment, we are talking only about the Tesla Model 3, the company's most affordable car. The expected price is about INR 55-60 lakh, which is about $75,000 - $81,500.



Gadkari confirmed that the country is focusing on electric vehicles, and he said many Indian companies are also working on electric vehicles.  Importantly, he indicated that Tesla will not only start EV sales in the country, but will also consider establishing production and assembly, according to Trak.in.

"India is going to become a number 1 manufacturing hub for auto in five years."

This is not the first time that representatives of the Indian government have said that Tesla is going to set up an enterprise in India. In late September, it became known that Tesla was considering investing in Karnataka for a research and development center in Bangalore. “The first proposal is for an R&D center and we have already had at least two rounds of discussions," said one official from the department, requesting not to be named. He also said that Tesla's head of India and Karnataka State Commissioner for Industry meet again later in September.

Craig Irwin of Roth Capital said he was aware of Tesla's plans for India. “We have channel checks from a couple of months back that indicates the entry into the Indian market is a very high probability for 2021, with a probable announcement in late 2020,” he said to CNBC. “Tesla is in the process of selecting a site for a manufacturing facility in India,” said Irwin indicating a launch by the end of 2020.

Meanwhile, Indian technology think tank Niti Aayog recently shared a proposal to provide $4.6 billion in incentives to companies that are building cutting edge manufacturing facilities. This proposal is under consideration by the government, and if it passes, it could be an important factor in Tesla's decision-making.

© 2020, Eva Fox. All rights reserved.

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