Kinetic Engineering on an electric trail

Pune-based Kinetic Engineering is setting up new capacities and tying up customers for its foray into EV components manufacturing.

By Mayank Dhingra calendar 22 Jun 2024 Views icon3408 Views Share - Share to Facebook Share to Twitter Share to LinkedIn Share to Whatsapp
Kinetic Engineering on an electric trail

As electric vehicles rapidly increase their market share in India, particularly in two-wheelers, Pune-based Kinetic Engineering Limited (KEL), one of India’s oldest automotive component and vehicle manufacturing companies, does not want to be left behind.

The company has earmarked Rs 54 crore to invest in a new subsidiary, Kinetic Watts & Volts, that will manufacture electric vehicle (EV) components such as motors, axles, frames, controllers, and batteries.

The homegrown automaker has meticulously identified key products ranging from electric two-wheeler frames, axles, electric three-wheeler chassis, and gearboxes for electric two- and three-wheelers, and aims to tap into both domestic and export opportunities.

According to Ajinkya Firodia, Managing Director, Kinetic Engineering, “KEL has strategically established a subsidiary (Kinetic Watts & Volts) with a maximum capital of Rs 25 crore, wherein the company maintains a controlling 51% ownership. We aim to position KEL as a major player in the rapidly expanding market for EV parts and assemblies.”

“This strategic move reflects our commitment to innovate and adapt to market trends, aligning with KEL’s history of revolutionising the two-wheeler sector and evolving into a prominent manufacturer of auto components. With a forward-thinking approach, KEL is poised to play a pivotal role in shaping the future of the EV component segment,” he added.

The company says it has a top-driven mandate to explore all potential avenues of being successful in the EV product range, and accordingly, the Kinetic Watts & Volts subsidiary will explore the market, and strategise KEL’s entry into the EV segment, depending on its strengths and market forecasts. While it has already identified EV axles, gearboxes, and chassis among the key products to start with, the company might add further products for a strong and sustainable future.

“We have allocated over Rs 54 crore for strategic investments in EV components through KEL’s newly-formed subsidiary and through self-investing. This decision was approved during the recent board meeting, wherein the company outlined plans to source capital from various channels, including promoters and the sale of non-core assets, the process for which is currently going on,” Firodia revealed.

End-to-end EV solutions in the offing

KEL says it is actively engaging with potential OEM customers for its EV solutions under the Watts & Volts umbrella, and it aims to offer integrated solutions for its potential EV customers. “Some of the key components on offer will be e-motors, controllers and batteries. Moreover, our objective is to serve potential EV customers, both smaller and larger ones, by providing a one-stop solution for these crucial EV components. We are also in discussion with several of our existing customers to include us in their EV plans,” Firodia said. “Notably, we have secured partnerships with prominent names like Kinetic Green, Eblu, and E-Fill, and have completed a dedicated manufacturing facility for Mahindra & Mahindra. We are closely eyeing the market, and gearing up as per the evolving needs of the electric mobility market,” he added.

The company also plans to leverage technological advancements to enhance efficiency, capacity, and overall quality of its products. “We aim to prioritise the upskilling of our workforce in automation, IoT, and cybersecurity to effectively harness these technologies and tackle emerging challenges,” Firodia highlighted.

By emphasising the importance of diversifying its sourcing channels, Kinetic Engineering aims to mitigate potential disruptions in its supply chain. The company plans to integrate IoT-driven predictive maintenance measures to minimise downtime and optimise operational efficiency at its manufacturing facilities. Recognising the transformative potential of 3D printing, IoT, and AI within the electric two-wheeler sector, KEL is also confident of leveraging these technologies for rapid prototyping, predictive maintenance, and enhancing customer experiences.

“This holistic approach ensures that KEL remains well-positioned to seize export opportunities, while maintaining a strong presence in the domestic market,” Firodia signed off.

This feature was first published in Autocar Professional's June 15, 2024 issue.

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