Can Tesla Sail Through Competitive Indian Seas?

Can Tesla Sail Through Competitive Indian Seas?

Tesla is an electric vehicle producer headquartered in California. It was founded by Martin Eberhard and Mike Tarpenning in 2004. The company was named as a tribute to electrical engineer Nikola Tesla. In February 2004, via a US$6.5 million investment, co-founder Elon Musk became the largest shareholder of the company and its chairman. He has served as CEO since 2008. The company manufactured its first car in 2009, named The roadster. It was followed by new and efficient models ever since.

Tesla’s Ingenuity
Tesla's Global Headstart
Tesla’s Gateway to India
The Anticipated Competitors of Tesla

Tesla’s India Specific Challenges

Tesla in India Analysis

Tesla’s Ingenuity

Tesla Supercharger

  • Tesla supercharger is a fast charging vehicle technology made by Tesla. It is a 480-volt direct current fast charger for all their electric cars. The Supercharger network was introduced on September 24, 2012, with six Supercharger stations. As of February 18, 2021, Tesla operates over 23,277 Superchargers in over 2,564 stations worldwide[2] (an average of 9 chargers per station).
  • Tesla launched the "Destination Charging location" network in 2014. Equipping chargers to hotels, restaurants, shopping malls and resorts to provide on-site vehicle charging at twice the power of default home charging.

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Tesla's Global Headstart

Tesla broke ground on the Gigafactory in June 2014 outside Sparks, Nevada. The name Gigafactory comes from the word 'Giga,' the unit of measurement representing “billions.” The Gigafactory is being built in phases so that Tesla can begin manufacturing immediately inside the finished sections and continue to expand thereafter.

Tesla opened its first Gigafactory in Shanghai, China. It was impressively built in less than Six months. It was also the first automobile factory fully owned by outside authority in China.

Gigafactory (Image via Tesla)

Watch Below Governor Brian Sandoval and Elon Musk, Chairman and CEO of Tesla Motors, announced that Nevada has been selected as the official site for the Tesla Gigafactory. Tesla will build the world’s largest and most advanced battery factory in Nevada which means nearly one hundred billion dollars in economic impact to the Silver State over the next twenty years.

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Tesla’s Gateway to India

Tesla India Motors And Energy Private Limited is a subsidiary of Tesla Inc. The company was registered on 8 January 2021 in Bengaluru, Karnataka. It has officially registered with the Registrar of Companies in India at its Bengaluru office. Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari has confirmed the entry of Tesla in India

Tesla should “make cars in India, sell in India and export from India,” and rely on local suppliers, Gadkari said at an India Today Conclave

Though there has been no formal announcement by the company on its India plans yet. Whatever be the plans the company is asked to manufacture and then sell in India and not to sell cars “Made in China”.

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The Anticipated Competitors of Tesla

The Future is Electric, this is not a future sentence anymore. We are already witnessing companies manufacturing and people moving to Electric vehicles. Several top performers in this field in India are pointed below.

Tata Electric

Tata EVs | Tata Electric Vehicles
Tata EVs | Tata Electric Vehicles

Tata is an already established and trusted brand in India. In order to boost EV future plans the company plans to invest $1 Billion Tata Motors electric vehicle subsidiary, Tata Electric.​​ Tata Motors recently struck a deal to raise Rs 7,500 crore from TPG Rise Climate and Abu Dhabi’s ADQ. This is a major fundraising by an Indian carmaker to boost the clean transportation segment. For now the company has introduced two EVs in market:

  • Tigor EV
  • Nexon EV

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Hyundai KONA Electric
Hyundai KONA Electric

Hyundai Motor Company is a South Korean multinational automotive manufacturer headquartered in Seoul, South Korea. They also hold a dominant share in Indian car segment through their operations in India. They launched their first EV, The Kona Electric to tap the newly formed demand in this sector.

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Mahindra Electric

Mahindra Electric car
Mahindra Electric car

The automotive giant is not left behind in the market of EVs. It has already started to manufacture automobiles that are powered by electric means.

Examples Include:

  • eVerito
  • eSupro
  • e2oPlus and more

Morrison Garages India

Morrison Garages
Morrison Garages

British automotive founded by Cecil Kimber in the 1920s, and M.G. Car Company Limited.The Indian subsidiary was set up in the year 2017 and began its sales and manufacturing operations in 2019. Now, it is a celebrated car brand in India. Last year it came up with the MG, ZS EV. The MG ZS EV is not just India’s first pure Electric Internet SUV, but also a catalyst for change. The EV is powered by i-Smart EV 2.0. Style, substance, performance.

Mercedes Benz

The car brand that is synonymous with luxury, came up with an all electric vehicle in oct 2020. The Mercedes Benz EQC Electric, with the same elegant style and the same robust lux that is always expected from the automobile manufacturer.

Mercedes EV Launch

Tesla’s India Specific Challenges

Charging Infrastructure

The one necessity of electric vehicles is its charging demands and it's a new concept to the world. So generally charging Infrastructure becomes a little problem for developing countries. In a developing country like India, The charging Infrastructure that is needed to jump on the EV trend is not ready. There is a lot of space left to fill in this domain. The Government of India is trying and boosting the process to develop the infra as soon as possible.


Another crucial thing in an EV is the battery, The lithium Ion battery. Every EV is powered by a battery that has to be imported in India. In case of four wheelers, Most EVs in India provide a range of 200 to 250 km and cost between Rs 14-20 lakhs which does not give a cost advantage compared to higher range cars in the same price range.

Lack of Renewable Energy

In India most of the electricity is made by coal burning. If we see EVs running in our markets then electricity demand will shoot up. Which will moreover push the companies to produce more and more electricity. Which will cancel out the motive of reducing the greenhouse gas emission because coal burning itself emits GHGs.

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Tesla has plans of getting in the Indian market and most probably it will enter. But the company will see many aforementioned edges and challenges that will ruffle their feathers, Like the Charging Infra, GHG emissions and Cost control issues. Moreover, seeing the current face of the government, and watching the relations with China, it will oppose selling “Made in China” cars in Indian Markets. Either Tesla has to start manufacturing in Indian Borders or have to find other ways to tackle the obstacle. In a nutshell, we can say that If the company has to expand and plant roots in our subcontinent, then it has to be agile and innovate in accordance to the demands here. It will have to improvise a bit.


Is Tesla allowed in India?

Tesla has got approval for four of its variants by the Indian government.

Which Indian company ties with Tesla?

Sona Comstar Ltd., Sandhar Technologies Ltd. and Bharat Forge Ltd. are among some Indian companies already supplying components to Tesla.

Does Tesla manufacture only electric cars?

Tesla builds not only all-electric vehicles but also manufactures scalable clean energy generation and storage products.

Who is Tesla's biggest competitor?

Some of the Tesla's competitors are:

  • Tata Electric
  • Hyundai
  • Mahindra Electric
  • Morrison Garages India
  • Mercedes Ben

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