How Electric Vehicles will change the face of last-mile delivery in India

Vaishnavi Gupta
Vaishnavi Gupta Oct 20 2020 - 4 min read
How Electric Vehicles will change the face of last-mile delivery in India
EVs have turned out to be the most effective means that offers a delivery experience with intelligent, data-driven logistical solutions.

India is a developing economy and whether it’s an organized or unorganized sector, each one has its own challenges that are yet to be solved. A major challenge in the logistical sector, especially with regards to the free and effective movement of goods across the country. Technically categorized as last-mile delivery, the sector is slowly finding its solution.

Electric Vehicles in India

In the league of solutions, EVs have turned out to be the most effective means that offers a delivery experience with intelligent, data-driven logistical solutions. It uses the data and intelligence on our vehicles to determine the best fit for every micro-location and offers a hassle-free experience, which is cleaner, faster, and reliable. A study says that EVs have 75-80% fewer moving components and this leads to a much lower maintenance bill. These also possess an inherent advantage when it comes to performance and drivability. In this game of change in the future of last-mile delivery, the Indian Government is playing a key role.

Government Policies

The Government is gearing up for its goal of making 30% of Indian vehicles electric by 2030. If we look at the recent steps by the government, it speaks a lot about the vision. The most promising one had been special policy measures such as slashing GST on EVs to 5% versus 28% for combustion engines. Apart from that INR 1.5 lakh tax exemption on loans to buy electric vehicles and INR 10K Cr allocated to FAME II to push electric mobility through standardization, had been duly recognized by the market players. Also, the Union cabinet had proposed customs duty exemption on certain EV parts including electric drive assembly, onboard charger, e-compressor, and a charging gun to cut down costs. To localize the value chain, the cabinet outlaid a five-year phased manufacturing program (PMP) until 2024.

Expert Opinion

According to experts, the future of last-mile delivery is anticipated to be EV driven and the biggest reason for the same is its easier operations and lower cost. India as its target market, EV will work as a boon and help overcome several inefficiencies in last-mile delivery, especially savings on fuel and asset cost. It is being forecasted that the rising cost of fossil fuels, will significantly increase the cost of operations with a fossil fuel-driven fleet.  And in such a scenario, EV will help save a lot; thereby will help reduce the dependence on crude oil.

If we go by the studies, EV is already economically viable and in near future, this will further work as a smart remedy to reduce the transportation cost. While the initial purchase and battery costing might look expensive to people, in the long-run, when compared with fuel costing it, will turn out to be an effective means of transportation that will also save time and money.

EV’s and the Environment

From nature’s perspective, EV doesn’t cause any pollution or harm to the environment. It is very much viable in an environment where fossil fuel prices are rising day-by-day and battery technology advancements are driving EV costs lower. From the commercial and business perspective, EVs are far less complex and help provide transparency to the organizations in terms of reducing hidden costs. EVs offer smarter tracking features like battery optimization, efficient routes, etc. that work in favor of organizations and result in long term profitability by integrated analytics on the data.

Future of Electronic Vehicle in India

If experts are to be believed, with EVs, it’s easier to integrate them with sensors and communication devices and the data recorded can be centrally located and moderated, which automatically, opens the scope of road analytics, air quality analytics, route optimization, and more. Talking about the future of EVs in the competitive Indian market, a study by the World Economic Forum has revealed that demand for the urban last-mile delivery will see a spike of 78-80 percent by 2030, and this will lead to the addition of 36 percent more delivery vehicles in the world's top 100 cities, where EVs will take the lead in the most productive manner.

The ecosystem of last-mile delivery seems to have a promising future and in this change in the last couple of years, online retail platforms like Amazon, Flipkart, food delivery apps like Swiggy, Zomato have played a key role. Another vital benefit of EVs is their advanced high-performance power trains. EV’s offer better acceleration and allow comfortable speeds for intra-city driving. At present, there are electric cars in the Indian market with top speeds ranging from 80-170 km, and EVs are deliberately designed to speed-limited and balance between range and travel time. Looking at the innovations and promising future of EVs, the application of more efficient motors such as Permanent Magnet Synchronous Motors (PMSM) will foster the development of energy-driven vehicles that don’t compromise with the well-being of nature. 


This article is written by Monika Singh, Director, Exalta.

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