Ather aims to produce high-speed electric two-wheelers that have been designed to meet Indian conditions and is developing the technology to make electric vehicles widely acceptable in the market.
Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal widely known for their super successful e-commerce venture Flipkart have invested a whopping $1 million (Rs. 6 crores) in Ather, a start-up company that is designing and producing electric vehicles for the Indian market. Even though electric vehicles especially electric two-wheelers have not been popular with the masses, the new company plans to change the same with its range of offerings that have been designed specifically for India.
Started by Tarun Mehta and Swapnil Jain in 2013, Ather aims to design high-speed electric two-wheelers for the Indian market and received support by the Incubation Cell at IIT Madras. The first prototype is ready and comes with an indigenously developed 15 kgs lithium-ion battery pack that has a claimed lifespan of 50,000 kms. The scooter on the other hand has been completely developed in-house, including the chassis and comes with a top-speed rated at 75 km/hr. In terms of performance, Ather’s new electric scooter is no slouch and can do 0-100 km/hr in just 11 seconds.
Coming to the production model, it will be too early to set a date for the products to hit the showrooms. With limited companies entering the electric vehicle space, Ather will find limited competition coming from Hero Electric as well as the south based Ampere Motors, among others. Apart from the Flipkart founders, the electric two-wheeler company has also generated investment from Raju Venkatraman, serial entrepreneur and CEO of MEDALL, in the current round of funding.
Keeping up with the credentials, the first round of funding saw an investment coming from Dr. V Srinivas, founder of Aerospike, and the Technology Development Board, Government of India. A total team of 15 engineers and designers will be working together to develop appropriate electric vehicles for the Indian market. Advances in the field of battery technology and storage will also play a major role in the future plans of the company.