Earlier this week, Bengaluru-based electric vehicle company Ather Energy has begun delivering its Ather 450 scooters in the city
- A few selected customers were invited to the company’s Final Assembly Unit to take their scooters home. It had opened pre-orders in early June, 2018, and has reportedly sold out its inventory for the rest of the year.
- The startup had also announced its expansion plans beginning with Chennai and further plans to roll on to more markets in the new year.
- Prior to delivering of the electric scooters, the startup had also set up private charging stations at the residences of the customers.
- Along with multiple fast public chargers set up by the company, the owners will also have free charging available both at home and across the city.
Five years since its inception in 2013 , Bengaluru-based startup Ather Energy began delivery of its first batch of its electric scooters from its Whitefield assembly plant to its first customers in the city. Though the start-up launched the Ather 340 before the Ather 450, about 96% of the pre-orders was for the latter model—prompting deliveries of the Ather 450 first.
Taking an innovative go-to-market route, customers had the option of placing orders through the company website along with booking their test ride slots; nearly 60% of consumers choosing to place orders online. Ather Energy expects to have6000-8000 bookings by June next year for its electric scooters from Bengaluru city alone. This is higher than the 5,000 scooters it had originally planned to sell in the first 12 months after deliveries began. Since the opening of the bookings in early June, Ather Energy has already sold out inventory for the rest of 2018-19.
Ather Energy had until now followed a strategy of focusing only on its home market and had planned to invest roughly $1 million to set up adequate charging infrastructure in the city before it began deliveries. The company, which counts Hero Motocorp and Tiger Global among its key investors , besides Flipkart co-founders Sachin and Binny Bansal, has garnered the highest attention among electric two wheelers so far. The firm has been at work since 2014 on the project, making it one of the longest gestation periods for a mobility startup in India at least.
And with the deliveries, Ather Energy announced its expansion plans starting with Chennai. Ather has already started working on the EV charging network, AtherGrid in Chennai and expects to set up their experience centre, AtherSpace by Q2 2019 which will be followed by other cities. The company is looking to expand to Hyderabad, Pune and the National Capital Region (NCR) centered on Delhi by the end of 2019-20.
The Ather 450 comes with a top speed of 80 km/hr, a range of 75 km and one of the quickest accelerations of 3.9 seconds from 0-40 km/hr in the scooter category and comes with parking assist. Making it an ideal city vehicle.
The Ather 450 has a 7″ touchscreen dashboard that allows on-board navigation with options of alternative routes and saved locations. It comes with the Ather app that enables push navigation from the phone to the vehicle dashboard, remote monitoring of the vehicle’s health and charge status. Finally, with the over-the-air (OTA) updates functionality, the vehicle is capable of improving over time with continuous upgrades and addition of new features and functionalities.