Ather Energy plugs into Chennai, launches 450 e-scooter at Rs 131,683

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 09 Jul 2019

Tarun Mehta, CEO and co-founder, Ather Energy: "We believe that Chennai will be a bigger market than Bangalore for us."

Ather Energy, the Bangalore-based electric two-wheeler company, has expanded its retail sales operation to Chennai, its second city in India following commercial launch in June 2018 in Bangalore. The company claims the 450, Ather’s flagship scooter, has seen “great traction from owners and reviewers and has changed the market's expectation of two-wheelers.”

Following access test rides to its potential customers in Chennai, the Ather 450 has already been sold out till November 2019. The company is now opening pre-orders for its second limited batch of deliveries.

While the Ather 450 has an on-road price of Rs 131,683, the Ather 340 costs Rs 119,091 in Chennai. The price includes the regulation two helmets, along with the FAME 2 subsidy and other basics like insurance, road tax, GST, and other fees. It is yet to be ascertained if the Budget 2019’s 7 percent reduction in GST is factored into the pricing.

10 fast-charging points in Chennai 
Ather Energy had begun the installation of its Ather Grid points in Chennai in May 2019. Since then, Chennai has seen installation of 10 fast charging points (locations detailed below). To encourage adoption of EVs in the city, Ather Energy says it will provide free charging at Ather Grid till December 2019 for all electric four-wheelers and two-wheelers and will add 40-50 more charging points to its network. 

On July 24, the company will be opening Ather Space, the experience center at Wallace Garden, Nungambakkam where consumers can test ride the e-scooters for a first-hand experience.

The company has announced free Ather One subscription for all deliveries in 2019, starting with the September batch. The Ather One plan offers customers free access to public and home charging; regular maintenance inclusive of consumables; breakdown assistance; and unlimited data services at a monthly Rs 700 plus GST.

Meanwhile, the company is increasing the production capacity of its manufacturing facility to ramp up deliveries in Bangalore and Chennai.

“After the successful launch in Banglaore, we are excited to enter Chennai where Ather was born. There is an incredible amount of excitement and awareness of electric vehicles in the city. This was evident in the pre-launch event when we sold out our first batch of deliveries before the official launch in Chennai. Two out of three consumers pre-ordered a vehicle, some even before taking a test ride. We now believe that Chennai will be a bigger market than Bangalore for us. We have spent the past year scaling up to meet the demand for Bangalore and have been building more features and improvements on the 450. We have been experimenting with new forms of ownership like lease and are excited to launch the same in Chennai.”

Highlights of the Ather 450
The Ather 450, an urban runabout, has a top speed of 80kph, a range of 75 km (IDC range of 107km) and one of the quickest accelerations (0-40kph) in the scooter category of 3.9 seconds. Also, for the first time in the category, the Ather 450 comes with parking assist, which allows riders to reverse into tight parking spots. 

The key differentiator of the Ather 450 is its intelligent features, seamless charging and ownership experience. The e-scooter has 7-inch touchscreen dashboard that allows onboard navigation with options of alternate 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.

The Ather 450 comes with a home charging point, that will be installed by the company at either the owner’s home or workplace. The company has introduced six major over-the-air (OTA) updates on the vehicle since launch. These updates have enabled new improved features on the vehicle and the app, ranging from new ride modes, range and navigation improvements to ride statistics on the Ather app.