Elec­tric Fu­ture

Car India - - WELCOME -

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

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