The Auto Expo 2018, was all about mobility for the future and there's no doubt that the way is electric. The government of India has been looking to electrify the cars here but there has been no success yet. However, when the government finally laid down a timeline of 2030 in front of car manufacturers which saw most finally taking some action on this front. The Auto Expo 2018 was the right platform to showcase electric cars which are in fact the future of mobility in India and there were many manufacturers who brought out future technologies in the form of concepts which will eventually go on to become production models. There were quite a few stunning cars at the expo this year but these 7 are a must watch because of the design, technology and of course the oomph factor.
Mercedes EQ Concept
Mercedes showcased the EQ electric car concept at 2018 Auto Expo and it was the star of the company's stable. Aesthetically, the concept looks suave and much part of the Mercedes family albeit with sharper lines. The main design feature distinguishing the future electric EQ models will be the Black Panel front grille that comes with a white-illuminated Mercedes star and integrates all the light elements under one surface. Much like the offerings from its compatriots, the Mercedes-Benz EQ Concept is no slouch with the company claiming a power output of 400hp and a driving range of up to 500 km on a single charge. The lithium-ion battery pack is mounted between the axles and have been designed between Daimler themselves. Despite its sheer size, Mercedes says the concept is capable of sprinting from 0-100 km/h in under 5 seconds.
Tata RaceMo Electric
The RaceMo concept
Debut Tata Motors had already turned quite a few heads when the Racemo sports coupe made its debut at the 2017 Geneva Motor Show and at the 2017 Delhi Auto Expo, the company showcased an electric version of the car. The all-electric version of the Racemo is christened the 'Racemo +-' and comes equipped with a 200 bhp churning electric motor which gets its power from a lithium-ion battery pack. According to the company, the RaceMo boasts of a range of 350km. Racemo is a 2-seater sports car that sits under 4 metres in length (3835 mm) and sports a rear-mounted mid-engine. The Racemo is powered by the 1.2 litre turbocharged Revotron aluminium engine and surprisingly has a 6-Speed AMT with paddle shift. Power output is 186 bhp and it has 210 Nm of peak torque. Tata says the Racemo will do 0-100 kmph in under 6 seconds. The car uses a special body that has Tata's MOFlex multi-material sandwich structure. Tata says this is a 'structural technology that enables greater freedom in surface design, efficient large-scale part integration leading to modularity and faster time to market'.
The Ioniq EV is under consideration for India
Hyundai is yet to confirm this, but the Ioniq might be the car coming to India and the company showcased it at the Delhi Auto Expo 2018. The Ioniq is Hyundai's answer to Toyota's Camry/ Prius and will help the company in working on an affordable EV for the Indian market but the one showcased at the Expo was an electric version. The Ioniq EV is powered by an electric motor that produces the equivalent of 118 bhp and 295Nm of torque. It can go from 0-100kmph time in just 10.2seconds, with a top speed rated at 165 kmph. The range of the Ioniq stands at 280km. If it comes to India, we'll see it take the CKD route.
Renault Trezor Concept EV
The Trezor concept previews the company's future design language
First unveiled at the 2016 Paris Motor Show, the Renault Trezor previewed the company's new design language. Taking the shape of an aggressive two-seater Grand Tourer (GT), the new Renault Trezor concept EV features a sleek and curvaceous carbon fibre body featuring red glazing to provide a splash of contrast. The company showcased the car at the Auto Expo 2018 and the powertrain used in Renault's latest EV concept is derived from a Formula E car. In this application it delivers 348bhp and develops 380 Nm of torque. The rear-wheel gets enough electric power to do a 0-100kmph sprint in less than 4-seconds, although the maximum range hasn't been specified. Renault engineers have fitted the car with two air-cooled big batteries, one sitting at the front while the other is in the back to ensure an optimal weight distribution between the two axles. We wait to see what Renault brings to India though with an electric powertrain.
The BMW i3S is likely to come to India
The BMW i3 is the bestselling compact battery-electric vehicle in the premium compact segment worldwide. But, BMW fans have been longing for a sportier version of the i3 to give the mild electric vehicle a much needed performance upgrade. In comes the i3S, the sportier version of the EV and this is not the first time the company is bringing this EV to India. In fact we've seen it when the company launched the i8 hybrid sports car in India, but at the Auto Expo 2018, the updated i3S made heads turn. The new BMW i3s provides zero emissions and features a high output 181 bhp electric motor which generates peak torque of 269 Nm. Its updated drive system includes modified motor control and specific taper roller bearings, which have been utilized to optimize power delivery and the performance curve at higher rpm. At the limits of the motor speed range, the power and torque of the enhanced drive system represent an improvement of up to 40 per cent over the BMW i3. Given the fact that India is going the electric way, this one fits the bill for BMW.
The Suzuki e-Survivor concept was first showcased at the Tokyo Motor Show
The e-Survivor Concept was unveiled at the 2017 Tokyo Motor Show and now it comes to India at the Auto Expo 2018. It's a quirky SUV and builds upon the success of the Jimny and Vitara. The Suzuki e-Survivor comes with four in-wheel electric motors but it's been envisioned as a two-seater car without a roof, but what we can see is that it's a 4x4. The extremely short overhangs at both the front and rear axles, show the compactness of the e-Survivor concept, while the lack of wheel arches give us a glimpse into what the suspension where we get to understand that the setup is a 4x4 vehicle.The e-Survivor comes with electrically retractable running boards and features a modern front fascia derived from the Jimny with circular LED headlights and an illuminated five-slot grille. It's a must watch at the Maruti Suzuki stall because it's like love at first sight.
Uniti Electric car
You might decide to give Hall No.1 A a miss, probably because you think that all the big manufacturers have brought in cars that will soon be hitting the markets. But there's another car, an electric one at that which is all set to make it to India by 2020 and the Swedish maker gave a sneak peek into what it's capable of. The concept is called the Uniti electric car and though it's Bird Automotive that'll be bringing the car to India, Uniti will be the technology lead in this project. The company will be bringing in a 5-seater electric car by 2020 but there are a lot of plans, like manufacturing, assembly, that are yet to be finalised.