Tata Tigor Electric variant appears to have similar power output as the Mahindra eVerito but weighs substantially lower
Tata Motors rolled out first batch of Tigor EV from Sanand plant in Gujarat in December 2017. Flagged off by N. Chandrasekaran, Chairman, Tata Sons in presence of Ratan Tata and Guenter Butschek, it marks the first step towards the brand commercialising e-mobility solutions for domestic customers.
Under the 1st phase, Tata is supplying 250 electric Tigors having already received a letter of authority (LoA) while another LoA is expected to be issued by EESL for an additional 100 EVs. The first batch has now been officially delivered.
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At the end of September 2017, Tata Motors got the better of Mahindra & Mahindra in an international competitive bidding and grabbed the order to supply 10,000 electric cars to Energy Efficiency Services Ltd (EESL) – a state owned company.
Tata Motors CEO and Managing Director Guenter Butschek said that the EESL project is a perfect platform for the brand to showcase its development in electric mobility before offering a range of zero-emission vehicles to the Indian consumers and will act as a test bed for further improvement. The lowest bid of Rs. 10.16 lakh, excluding GST, proved to be the deal cracker as the EVs will be used by departments and ministries of the government through EESL.
Tata has been supplying zero-emission vehicles to EESL under two phases. The first phase sees 250 electrified cars being supplied while the remaining vehicles will be delivered in the second phase in the due course. They will be procured within a period of nine months from the date of issue of the intent letter reportedly.
Currently, the JLR owner manufactures three vehicles from the Sanand plant in Gujarat: the Tigor, its hatchback cousin the Tiago and the entry-level Nano small car. The annual production capacity stands at a massive 2.5 lakh units. If the electric Tigor succeeds, will we soon be seeing a similar version up on sale at Tata showrooms? The possibilities are high but we might have to wait for quite a while.
We were surprised that Tigor got the call because a pure electric vehicle based on the Tiago was displayed in the UK recently and before that you might remember the Bolt EV and there is the Nano EV under Jayem banner as Neo. With same basics, the EV expertise would have been derived from the learning and groundwork Tata has performed since the beginning of this decade and the powertrain is supplied by a company called Electra EV with single-speed automatic transmission.
Replacing the Internal Combustion engine, the electric motor has a maximum capacity of producing 39.95 horsepower at 55 kmph. It is much lower compared to the 114 hp the Tiago EV prototype was said to have and the regular Tigor. It has now been showcased at the ongoing 2018 Auto Expo giving us a good preview of how the production version for private customers will be.
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However, in comparison to the production-spec Mahindra eVerito, the power specification almost stays similar. As for the dimensions, there will be no change as it will measure 3,992 mm in length, 1,677 mm in width and 1,537 mm in height with a wheelbase of 2,450 mm. It is likely to have more range than the eVerito – probably at over 110 km – as it weighs nearly 200 kg lighter at 1,516 kg (Gross Vehicle Weight). The interior largely remain the same in the Tigor EV except for the addition of range indication and some blue accents as in the exterior with EV graphics.
Tata sees no reason why the electric variant of Tigor cannot be sold for public and if it instigates enough enthusiasm it will likely be production in desired volumes. Currently, the brand is all pumped to deliver the destined numbers to EESL and according to Mr. Guenter Butschek, MD, Tata Motors the challenge at present is industrialization of entire supply chain to generate required volumes for EESL.
Back in May 2017, Butschek hinted that the indigenously developed electric drivetrain unit can be utilised to propel the Tiago as well. This could probably mean that we might see two electric vehicles from Tata in the near future. To EESL, the Tigor EV is delivered in three trims: Base, Premium and High. Only available in Pearlescent White colour with blue decals, it boasts blue EV lettering on the front grille and it comes equipped with FATC (Fully Automatic AC).
Tata Motors believes that the EESL order – acquired after beating two significant competitors – has given the brand a much-needed push. A wider portfolio of electric powertrain solutions has been confirmed and an announcement is soon expected. Butschek already said “2018 will be an electrifying year” and it could include introductions of electric Nano, Tiago and Tigor for private buyers.
The Tigor EV uses a 216 Ah 16V battery and 3-Phase AC Induction Motor. The top speed is rated at 100 kmph while the all important electric range stands at 130 km on a single charge. The charging time from zero to 80 percent is 90 minutes with fast charge and 3 hours using normal charger. The zero-emission powertrain is coupled with a single-speed automatic transmission sending power to the front wheels. The regenerative braking system assists in clocking more miles.