In the backdrop of electric two-wheeler sales starting to get some traction, the diversified Mahindra Group and Hero Electric are joining hands, in a move that will see the two collaborate in enhancing production to meet rising demand.
As a part of the strategic partnership, the two companies will also work on joint product development and knowledge sharing. Furthermore, it is envisaged that platform sharing will enable electrification of Mahindra-owned Peugeot Motorcycles products.
Electric Vehicle sales in India still are a fraction of the overall passenger vehicle market. However, electric two-wheeler sales are picking up pace in recent years.
In 2021, electric two-wheeler sales accelerated 132 per cent to 2.34 lakh units, compared with a little over 1 lakh units sold in 2020, according to data from Society of Manufacturers of Electric Vehicles. Importantly, sales of high-speed scooters (speed of over 25 km and require a full license) jumped 425 per cent, while low-speed scooter sales (no license required) rose only 24 per cent.
Hero Electric is currently the country’s largest electric two-wheeler maker, with sales of 46,214 units last year. Mahindra Group will manufacture Hero’s two most popular electric bikes – Optima and NYX at its Pitampur plant. Hero said that this collaboration, along with the expansion of its existing factory in Ludhiana, will enable it to manufacture 1 million EVs per year by 2022.
“With this partnership, we look to further enhance our manufacturing capabilities to meet demand and utilise Mahindra Group’s robust supply chain to reach newer centers in the country,” said Naveen Munjal, MD of Hero Electric.
The long-term partnership will also see both the companies make the most out of each other’s deep knowledge of EVs and drive new product development in the next few years, he further added.
Back in 2015, Mahindra Two Wheelers had acquired a 51 per cent stake in Peugeot Motorcycles from France’s Groupe PSA. Later in 2019, Mahindra acquired the remaining stake to become the sole owner of Peugeot Motorcycles.
This partnership with Hero Electric will enable development of a platform approach, which should help the electrification of the portfolio of Peugeot Motorcycles’ products. This move will help in optimisation of costs, timelines and shared knowledge, the two companies said.
“Peugeot Motocycles has ambitious plans in the EV mobility space in several regions of the world and particularly in Europe. This strategic partnership will bolster these efforts through joint development and a platform sharing approach leveraging the combined strengths of the two businesses,” said Rajesh Jejurikar, executive director, auto and farm sectors at Mahindra & Mahindra.
This partnership will also look at knowledge sharing between the research and development teams of the two firms to build new products and technologies keeping the local as well as global markets in mind, the companies added.