Uber will flood the ride-sharing market of India in a partnership with Indian automaker Mahindra, and they will do it with electric cars on the streets of Delhi and Hyderabad by March 2018. Uber match the bid of Japan’s SoftBank Group backed Ola, who had announced a pilot program for Nagpur.
India is one of the biggest markets for car sales, with up to 3 million sales in the last fiscal year according to Reuters. But only a fraction of the new cars are electric, despite the efforts of Indian authorities to promote new forms of transportation.
The partnership between Uber and Mahindra will subsidize electric cars to Uber’s drivers, and the Indian firm will provide financial options as well as insurance and after-sale services.
“Our collaboration with Uber is an important next step to help accelerate the large-scale adoption of electric vehicles on share mobility platforms and meet the nation’s vision for EVs,” Mahindra’s Managing Director, Pawan Goenka, said to Reuters.
Mahindra is not only partnering with American companies, they’re coming to America to open production plants and create jobs. This last November, the Indian automaker opened its first plant in the USA, and they will be producing their off-road Roxor in Southeast Michigan.
“Isn’t it wonderfully ironic that an Indian company that began by importing U.S. vehicles from the Willys Motor Company in those days, is now coming back and is investing in America,” the Mahindra Group CEO, Anand Mahindra, told The Hindu.
Mahindra will invest up to $230 million to start production, and will be investing $600 million more by 2020. The plant employs 250 people, and will add 400 more by 2020. The Mahindra Group first entered the U.S. market in 2014 with tractors.
Meanwhile the Uber-Mahindra partnership will include the e2oPlus hatch and the eVerito sedan models. The Indian automaker wants to set foot in the American market with more commercial models like the off-road Roxor. Time will tell if Mahindra will conquer this market too.