E-Rickshaws Changing Urban Transportation Landscape in India

Even though the urban population of India is rising, the overall disposable income of cities isn’t, as most of the people are coming in from rural areas, therefore are plagued by perpetually precarious finances. As a result, the demand for cost-effective commuting options, especially for short distances, has perpetually been high in the cities and increasing still. This is why electric rickshaws (e-rickshaws) have become so popular in the last 5–6 years. For every km, a person has to merely pay INR 10, at which rate, the e-rickshaw driver earns INR 50 for traveling just 1 km.

Therefore, due to the cost benefits of such vehicles for commuters, as well as drivers/owners, the Indian electric rickshaw market revenue is projected to grow from $786.2 million in 2019 to $1,394.2 million by 2025, at a robust 33.3% CAGR during 2020–2025. As per P&S Intelligence, another reason behind the increasing sale of such vehicles is the government support. Because electric vehicles (EVs) are costlier than their conventional counterparts, the government is offering strong support in the form of purchase subsidies, tax rebates, and reduction in the registration and licensing fees, to encourage their adoption.

Presently, Delhi is the most-prosperous region for Indian electric rickshaw market players. These vehicles first appeared in the city in 2012, and by 2016, there were over 100,000 of them on the roads. A key reason behind this urge has been the subsidy of INR 30,000 that the Delhi government has been offering on them. Moreover, in 2017, Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) formally introduced these vehicles at stations, where their numbers are continuously swelling. Further, in February 2021, the Delhi government decided to replace its compressed natural gas (CNG) auto-rickshaws with electric variants.

Hence, with the continuous government support and rising need for first- and last-mile transportation in cities, the demand for electric rickshaws will keep rising in the country.

Source: P&S Intelligence



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