A nice article from Financial Times on how the idea for the Reva Electric car started and its journey from being a dream under an Australian desert sky to a commercial product that has sold over 3000 electric cars so far in India.
Electric cars, by most accounts and opinions, are not going to be a major contributor to transportation in most parts of the world for at least a decade, but in countries like India, where the total required distance that you can get from a battery charge is not as large as those for the US or Australia, electric cars could be reasonably well. And markets such as India are price sensitive markets, which means electric cars are a plus there as well.
The price of Reva is still on the higher side for it to become mainstream in India (4 lakhs is a lot of money), but there are significant operating cost benefits that people should look at – see this page for more on this. It says that in the first year alone, owing to tax benefits from larger depreciation allowance, and the low cost of “fuel” per kilometer, total savings could be over 1.5 lakhs. Now, that’s tremendous!
Will Reva be able to compete with Tata Nano. I doubt it, at least for now. But the future could be very different.