The income tax deduction announced for pushing electric mobility in the latest budget session has sparked debates lately. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman recommended a reduction in GST from the existing 12% to 5%.
Also, she has declared a deduction of up to Rs.1.5 lakh on the interest paid on loans taken to purchase electric vehicles. These new provisions look like great encouragement to step-up the electric automobile industry.
Just at the right time, the Hyundai launches its first electric SUV in India today, Kona Electric. Apart from being Hyundai’s first electric car, it is also the first electric car to enter the Indian market. This is an electric version of its SUV – Kona, which was designed for the US and Europe.
When you dive deeper into the specifications of the car, the original car has two electric drivetrain versions – 39.2kWh and 64kWh batteries. The vehicle that is being launched in India gets the smaller battery power among the two.
Hyundai India has announced that the battery gives a mileage of 452km as certified by the Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI), whereas some global reports have stated that the smaller battery provides a mileage with at 312km. The power output of Kona is listed at 131bhp and has a peak torque of 395Nm; this gears up the front wheels.
Kona EV has an attractive styling with a body-coloured bumper rising to the hood. It comes with comfortable seating options, and the rear legroom is good enough. There are several options on the touchscreen infotainment front. It is also said that the car zips in and out of corners smoothly as it is coupled with precise steering and a sharp front end.
The car requires charging for 6.5-7 hours on a regular power socket to give you full battery. Alternatively, a charging period of about 50 minutes is sufficient to get an 80% battery.
The vehicle will be available at the showrooms for a test drive soon. Consumers can charge the car once every few days and drive a distance of up to 200-280km. It is speculated that the final cost of the car would be around Rs.20 to Rs.25 lakh.