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Ather CEO claims EV fires are due to imported battery packs not made for India’s weather

Fires in electric vehicles due to the battery pack are not exclusive to India alone, the most-recent incidence involving an electric two-wheeler has made this discussion a hot topic again. The co-founder and CEO of Ather Energy, Tarun Mehta has said that many of the battery packs for EVs imported into the country were not designed for Indian weather conditions.

The most recent fire incident involving an e-scooter in Pune was on the basis of Mehta’s statement. While there has been a large spike in the production and import of electric vehicles to India, the battery packs are sourced from China.

Ather CEO claims EV fires are due to imported battery packs that are not ready for the Indian environment

Ather CEO claims EV fires are due to imported battery packs not made for India's weather

Local EV makers do not have any inputs into the making of battery packs used in these EVs, a majority of these battery packs as per Ather’s CEO are not made for Indian weather conditions. The average temperatures on Indian roads can hover above 45-degrees Celsius and this leads to the overheating of the battery pack.

Tarun Mehta also feels that the demand for high-speed electric scooters in the market could also be a contributing factor to the overheating issues of a battery. Powering a higher grade electric motor with the same battery pack meant for a less-powerful motor induces more thermal load on the battery.

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This ultimately leads to overheating and vehicle fires. Ather is investing in the development of battery packs that are well-suited for the Indian conditions.

There is a need for regulatory agencies to step up their work to make sure that only suitable battery packs are allowed in the country. There had been a long list of fire incidents involving Okinawa products recently, and the latest incident did not have any fatalities.

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Sumedh Joshi
Sumedh Joshi
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