EVage is setting up micro factories to produce its Model.X delivery vans to help satisfy the burgeoning demand for electric 4-wheel delivery vehicles. The plan is to build Exoskeleton Structures upon which several different body types can be affixed — SUVs, vans, trucks, and other delivery vehicles. A team of 50 experts from fields as varied as aeronautical engineering, auto design, battery chemistry, and digital manufacturing have been working for the past 8 years to bring the Model.X to market.
EVage currently employs around 80+ people at its R&D centre in Mohali, India. Five prototypes are currently undergoing testing.
“We have built our 1st vehicle in the logistics sector — a four wheel commercial van that has done a test run of over 250,000 km,” Inderveer Singh, Founder & CEO, said.
The Model.X is manufactured with composite bio-friendly material that is lighter and stronger than steel and has a focus on modularity in assembly and design. The product is extensively customizable.
EVage has created its own integrated powertrain — motor controller, gearbox, and battery packs.
“EVage has just raised $28 million in a seed round (one of the largest in India), led by new U.S.-based VC RedBlue Capital, and will use the funds to complete its production-ready factory outside of Delhi in the second half of 2022 and scale up production to meet growing demand. By the end of the year, there are plans to fulfil orders for customers across FMCG/Logistics/Ecommerce sectors.”
India’s Transport Minister, Nitin Gadkari, has set a target for the country to have 30% private cars, 40% buses, 80% two- and three-wheelers, and 70% commercial vehicles electric by 2030. In April last year, Mr. Gadkari also inaugurated the EVage vehicle for Amazon’s fleet at the Amazon Smbhav Summit 2021.
Olaf Sakkers, general partner at RedBlue Capital, noted that EVage’s vehicles don’t have to meet the same standards as vans in the West, because in India vehicles rarely go above 40 miles per hour. Motor requirements and battery size are potentially smaller and much cheaper as a result as well. Being electric, the vehicles would avoid pollution restrictions in Indian cities.
“A congruence of factors in India — notably, climate change policies, fuel costs and skyrocketing demand for e-commerce — has set up ideal conditions for startups like all-electric commercial vehicle start-up EVage.”
EVage expects to launch Model.X delivery vans with a 1 ton capacity this year. This is the largest payload demand in the small commercial segment. I am keen to see more developments in the world’s largest democracy.