German luxury carmaker BMW believes that a reduction in import duties on electric vehicles (EV) for a limited time or a limited number of units will help create demand to help to manufacture of such vehicles in India and bring new technologies quicker to the country, according to a senior company official.
The company, which has been manufacturing locally many of its vehicles sold in India for the last 15 years, considers creating demand as key to localization of manufacturing.
''What we always do is we create demand for a model and then localize it. We believe these new technologies also have the potential to be localized in the future but you need to create a mass demand for that critical mass (for local manufacturing to be viable),'' BMW Group India President and CEO Vikram Pawah told PTI.
The only way to do that, according to him, is to fast track it, create the demand before the infrastructure develops, or create the demand which will create the infrastructure.
''Then we can localize by that time these technologies which are mature and then we can apply it into the country,'' he added. Pawah further said, ''For that what we are seeking from the government is a very simple thing, that yes, let us have some reduction in import duties, but only for a limited time or limited quantities.''
The rationale behind such a demand, according to him is ''it will allow us to achieve both the objectives. We will be able to keep manufacturing into India, and we will be able to bring these technologies quicker into India.''
Reiterating that the company has consistently maintained this stand, Pawah said, ''That is what our consistency has been always that at any point any new technologies we should do that. It will allow even safety technologies, environment, green technologies to come into India faster.''
Currently, India imposes 100 percent import duty on fully imported cars with CIF (Cost, Insurance and Freight) value more than $40,000 and 60 percent on those costing less than the amount.
The German luxury carmaker has announced that it would launch three electric vehicles in the next 6 months in India to accelerate its electric mobility journey in the country.
To start with, the company will launch its technology flagship all-electric SUV iX in the next month which will be followed by an all-electric MINI luxury hatchback in 3 months. These will be followed by the launch of the all-electric sedan BMW i4 in six months.
(With inputs from PTI)