Ather wants to create complete EV ecosystem

Ather wants to create complete EV ecosystem

Tarun Mehta (left) and Swapnil Jain launch the electric scooters Ather 450 and 340 in Bengaluru on Tuesday. DH Photo

Ather Energy has envisioned creating an ecosystem for electric mobility, introducing its first two products on Tuesday.

The company, which was founded by IITians Tarun Mehta and Swapnil Jain in 2013, launched its two awaited scooters Ather 340 and 450 - priced Rs 1,09,750 and Rs 1,24,750 (on-road Bengaluru) - respectively, which is inclusive of the FAME subsidy of Rs 22,000.

The company also launched the Ather One subscription plan, which entitles customers to free public and home-charging, periodic maintenance inclusive of consumables, breakdown assistance and unlimited data services for the dashboard at Rs 700 + GST per month.

For over four years now, Ather has been developing its scooter, perfecting its design and specs, in turn not only making it competitive as a product, but also anchoring it strongly in a nascent market.

"In the last four years, we have not only built the scooter, but an ecosystem for an electric vehicle future. Be it the suppliers and partners who were entering the EV market, the charging infrastructure that had to be set up for consumers and the engineering talent itself to build the products," Mehta, who is the CEO of Ather Energy, told DH.

The scooter (called S340 earlier) has gone through 55 prototypes, before assuming the perfect design. The two scooters, for which pre-bookings have commenced, will see deliveries from August. They will be rolled out from the company's facility at Whitefield, which has a planned capacity of 600 units per week, however, clocking 250 units at present. Both scooters see almost 90% localisation.

Ather Energy has a new dealership and service model. While the ordering, payment, and test ride scheduling is online, the brand has opened its experience centre, AtherSpace to give customers an in-depth look and experience of the product.

Also, it is reported that Ather plans to invest Rs 130 crore in the next four years to set up charging infrastructure for EVs across major cities in the country. Last month, Ather started installation of 'AtherGrid' across Bengaluru, with plans to be present across 12 cities and enter 30 cities with 6500 units over the next four years.

On the products front, the startup is vying for more products to be launched, and has hinted at more scooters, even motorcycles, and ideas for the mass segment.