THE AUTOMOBILE POLICY OF THE INDIAN government continues to hog the limelight for the third month in succession. There is no argument on the fact that alternative power trains will reshape the face of the industry and redefine the car as we know it today. However, we should not lose sight of the fact that less than one per cent of the cars sold in the last year were fully electric and less than five per cent were hybrid. Most manufacturers around the world will be ready with their electric vehicles and the related infrastructure only from 2020 onwards. Therefore, there is a very strong case for introducing hybrids in the Indian market and encouraging their sales with lower taxation. Currently the way both GST for automobiles and taxation of fuel stand, there is absolutely no clear direction or focus. This will take its toll and we dread to think what the manufacturers will have to display at the forthcoming Auto Expo in New Delhi.
There is a very strong case for introducing hybrids in the Indian market and encouraging their sales with lower taxation
This month we drove the all-new Audi A8, a car packed to the gills with tomorrow’s technology. Impressively, the A8 is equipped with Level 3 autonomous driving capability and should make its way to Indian shores by mid-2018. On 20 September I lost a dear friend, Gautam Kulkarni, to cancer. Gautam used to motocross and rally, and was a petrol-head at heart. He loved his cars and, above all, he was a gentleman and a good human being. May his soul rest in peace.
ASPI BHATHENA EDITOR