With rising fuel prices, the auto makers are bound to shift their focus on the development towards alternative propulsion technologies to power their vehicles of the future. We have already known big companies like GM, Suzuki, Toyota, BMW, Volkswagen, etc working on technologies like hybrids and electric powered vehicles. We had also seen the Indian utility vehicle manufacturer; Mahindra and Mahindra acquire the sole Indian auto company that produces electric vehicles, Maini Reva to expand its product portfolio in the field of electric vehicles. However, Mahindra is not only focusing on electric technology as is evident from recent news. Mahindra Solar One, the solar business arm of the company is making plans to develop a solar technology which will be used to power the Reva cars.
“We are working on options of how solar can be deployed in automotives. It is in an early stage but we see that as something that will clearly evolve in the future. We look at this (solar) as a potential for hybridisation of cars like Reva,” Vish Palekar, business head (cleantech ventures), Mahindra Partners, said.
Mahindra Solar One is now mulling over the option of either to develop a solar-electric technology or a diesel-electric technology to be deployed in the Reva. The utility vehicle manufacturer holds a stake of over 55% in the company Maini Reva. Mahindra acquired the 55% stake in August 2010. Mr. Palekar also commented that Reva was very much interested in driving standards on green energy automotive technology. The company is very optimistic about the implementation of the solar technology in our everyday cars. Once this technology is developed, Mahindra will look forward to put such technologies in its highly successful models like the Xylo and the Bolero. The company expects to come up with the solar technology by the year 2014.