Tesla's India plans oscillate between two states amidst new challengers

(Image credit: Testla)

When Tesla registered a company in India and went through the registration process in Karnataka, everyone assumed that their manufacturing (or assembling) facility will come up in India's very own Silicon Valley. However, neighbouring Maharashtra likes to believe that they've won the battle. 

The state's industries minister Subhash Desai is claiming that Karnataka has lost the battle and that Tesla's investment would come to Maharashtra. Why so? Because the world's top maker of battery-operated cars is setting up workshops and showrooms in the state. 

Desai was quoted by the Times of India as stating that Karnataka had missed out on the deal. Of course, it is another matter that the neighbouring state had never made any announcement on its part about hosting Tesla. 

The minister claimed that Tesla had just decided to set up a workshop as well as a showroom in Karnataka and the same would be the case in Mumbai. "They want to start a manufacturing facility in the country, but before doing so, they will showcase six electric vehicles to see which gets the maximum response," he said. 

He further added that these cars would be brought from the US and Europe, choose the best one for the Indian market and then decide where to set up manufacturing facilities. So, Desai was attempting to clarify that just because a company uses a certain address to register itself, doesn't mean that it would build a manufacturing facility in the vicinity. 

When does Tesla touch down in India?

A report from The Indian Express confirms the arrival of Tesla in India in the first half of 2021. Nitin Gadkari also confirmed the push for electric vehicles in India and how Indian companies are also making strides in this department. 

He confirmed that Tesla will begin with sales in India and then look to set up an assembly and manufacturing facility. But this would be based on how well the response is to the cars. Though a more practical approach would be to set up charging stations, and other facilities so as to make the vehicles more viable before looking at the response. 

Musk himself confirmed on Twitter previously that Tesla is coming to India, “Next year for sure.” Reports claim that it will be the Model 3 that will be arriving in India first. The company would deliver the pre-booked models and new bookings would only commence in the second half of the year and cars would be priced around Rs 55,00,000.

But, Tesla is not alone 

While the battle between states is warming up over whom Tesla would pick, the company itself is bracing up for competition - both from a bunch of brands such as Tatas and Hyundai, who have offerings ready to roll. 

However, the latest entrant to join the growing band of electric vehicles is Triton-EV which announced plans to launch its first product in India. Called the N4, the electric sedan would compete against the Tesla Model 3, though it is priced much cheaper at Rs.35 lacs as against the expected Tesla price of Rs.50 lacs. 

A report published in Rushlane says pre-booking for Triton-EV N4 sedan has started on the company's website. Customers will have the option to choose a 75Kwh or 100 Kwh battery pack, with range of 523 km and 696 km, respectively. The car will support fast charging, allowing zero to 80% charge in around one hour.

triton n4 launch in india

(Image credit: Triton)

Want to know about the latest happenings in tech? 

Follow TechRadar India on TwitterFacebook and Instagram!

Bodhisatwa Ray

Hardcore gamer, gadget enthusiast & cinema buff | Gaming, tech correspondent & reviewer at TechRadar