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Bengaluru leads India’s new EV registrations beating New Delhi, Mumbai; Karnataka has most charging stations

Bengaluru has emerged as India’s leading city for electric car registrations in 2023, surpassing significant cities like Mumbai, Delhi, and Pune.

The city’s tech-savvy workforce, who are usually open to accepting new technologies, zero road tax, subsidized electricity for EV charging, and an extensive charging network have all contributed to this growth.

It increased more than threefold in 2023, reaching 8,690 units, according to data from Jato Dynamics that Bengaluru electric car registrations reviewed. The city’s love for EVs extends beyond cars and also includes numerous two-wheelers.

This tendency to choose EVs over ICEs has consistently positioned the city as a prominent proponent of EV adoption in India. While Bengaluru is the leading city in India when it comes to EV adoption, the state it is located in, Karnataka, has seen a nearly five-fold increase in EV registrations between 2018 and 2021, making it one of the top three states for EV adoption.

A report titled “Roadmap for Transformation of Bengaluru to a Global EV Lighthouse City in India,” prepared by the UK Government, NITI Aayog, and the Government of Karnataka, highlighted the state’s progress. According to a report by The New Indian Express, the registration of EVs in the state has seen a whopping 1,275 percent growth.

In 2017–18, the city had 1,922 EVs. By 2023-2024, the number had risen to 1,59,428. The vehicles include two-wheelers, three-wheelers, and cars. All in all, there are 3.4 lakh e-vehicles in the state, with 2.98 lakh two-wheelers, 23,516 four-wheelers, and 18,246 three-wheelers.

UP has the most EVs registered. Maharashtra and Karnataka are the next two stops.

By 2030, electric two-wheelers and three-wheelers will lead EV adoption in Bengaluru, with sales penetration projected to reach 30 percent for private cars, 70 percent for commercial vehicles, 40 percent for buses, and 80 percent for two-wheelers and three-wheelers. The penetration of electric buses and private vehicles is expected to increase slower than in other segments.

With the rise in EVs, the demand for charging infrastructure is also set to grow. The report projects that Bengaluru will need at least 58,416 charging points by 2030, driving the city’s energy demand to 11.73 gigawatt hours. Bengaluru’s conducive EV and energy storage policies, thriving tech industry, and extensive logistics network are key factors supporting its transformation into a global EV lighthouse city.

Karnataka leads the nation in the number of publicly available charging stations, with over 5,500 stations as of February 2024. EVs account for 6–7 percent of the total energy consumption in Karnataka, with Bengaluru alone accounting for over 5 percent. According to Bescom data, EV chargers approved by the company have consumed 14.8 lakh kWh of power over the past two years, generating significant revenue.

Despite a slight dip in registrations towards the end of 2023, Bengaluru’s overall trend shows a considerable increase in EV adoption. Rising public awareness, diverse model options, and affordable costs have encouraged more people to switch to EVs. However, the city still has room to grow by adopting electric two-wheelers, three-wheelers, and public taxis. The state government is keen on introducing electric buses to its fleet, further promoting EV use.

Karnataka’s EV policy is attracting significant investments, contributing to the state’s goal of becoming a major player in the global EV manufacturing sector. According to Ramesh Shivanna, a Federation of Karnataka Chambers of Commerce and Industry member, increasing energy consumption by EVs will help the state and country achieve renewable energy goals. As India aims to become a global EV manufacturing hub, Bengaluru is poised to play a crucial role in this transformation.

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