Tag Archives: Ather Scooter

The Ather brownout

After the investment by Hero Motors in Ather Energy what is very obvious is that there is a certain communication link that seems to have been cut… that they have managed to choke Tarun & Swapnil… their voices have almost been shut out… the way business was done seems to have changed somewhat…

There have been changes both inside and outside. Looks like production might not start even by mid 2018… Continue reading

Ather Scooter and bigger wheels

It has been the observation of PlugInCaroo from day one (and even during design stage) that Ather Scooter needs to have bigger wheel size to take advantage of its engine. It should have a minimum of 16 inches if it not  17 inches to take full advantages of the EV.

It already has a very powerful 3,000/5,000 watt motor and also has very powerful battery that can quickly transfer the power requirement to it really makes no sense in going with a small “scooter” wheel. Is the wheel a bottleneck to the awesome power output of the bike?

Just by putting on 17 inch wheels the very same bike (with a little modification) can easily cross 100kmph instead of the existing 75kmph speed. Moreover the bigger wheels along with the existing suspensions will only improve the ride quality and handling speed over rough terrain or unpaved roads. Over paved city roads the rid-quality will be unparalleled even by more expensive motorcycles or scooters!!!

Further the high rate of torque and speed pick-up makes it necessary to have bigger wheels. Since this could reduce range due to the added weight Ather can add a little bigger battery and position it as a premium model.

This bigger model can also be pushed as Electric-Trike, Electric-ATV, Electric 3 wheel or 4 wheel Tractor.

If they do manage to bring out a bigger wheel model they can move on to the electric Trike and electric ATV models. These do have a huge market in middle-east for leisure riding over sand dunes in the desert especially in the future taking into consideration the falling price of oil and the 2022 FIFA Football World Cup. Enormous business opportunity awaits Tarun and Swapil.

The 17 inch wheel will also enable them to get into the lucrative and ever growing tractor business in India and replace the existing tractors with cheaper Electric Tractors. As the Gulf Oil markets crumble and falls millions of Indians are going to return to India and get into Agriculture and this will create a huge boom around this business.

With smaller wheels their choice of vehicles will be limited.

Ather Scooter Vs Gogoro – FIRST EVER SHOOTOUT

  Ather Scooter Vs Gogoro – FIRST EVER SHOOTOUT… Even before Ather Scooter is out…

Ather Scooter Vs Gogoro Scooter

Ather Scooter Vs Gogoro Scooter…dho dala!

Most of Ather Energy Scooter’s specifications and Images are out except the Price. Even Ather Energy has not decided on the Price… yet… but we at PlugInCaroo take the liberty to guess that the scooter could be priced around Rs 95,000 (US$ 1,400) EXACTLY!!!

At this price we expect the 10,0000 Ather Scooter to be sold out within months of its release. Delhi, Mumbai, Pune, Chennai & Bangalore each can swallow 2,000 Electric Bikes within days of its release especially if there is online purchase and home delivery.

We at PlugInCaroo forecasts sales of Ather Energy to be around 200,000 in a year hoping they can ramp up to meet the demand. But after this figure if they are not able to provide charging facilities in between cities or extra batteries then the demand could infact drop.  This is necessary as the scooters can never be just inside city devices but also intercity connectors.

Price: Gogoro Scooter is priced at US$ 3,000 At this price Gogoro Scooter is MORE THAN TWICE as expensive as Ather Scooter. This would be a major drawback for Gogoro. If Ather Energy ships to Taiwan then Gogoro might as well close down because it would make no sense to buy a Gogoro when you have a similar scooter for less than half the price.

Range: Ather scooter has a range of 60Kms while Gogoro has a range of 100kms. Although Gogoro might seem like a winner it is not necessarily so…because most people do not travel 100kms a day, and those who do travel beyond that have to seriously consider shifting to a CNG-Car  because  level of comfort  and safety is better in a car and the CNG price and mileage of cars makes the expense similar.

Top Speed: Ather scooter has a top speed of 72Kmph while Gogoro has a top speed of 95kmph.. a difference of 23kmph. But in City traffic its not very much possible… to reach 95kmph on a steady basis. Thus this too has only a limited advantage to Gogoro.

Battery: Ather has mentioned that they will have “swapable” battery meaning they could have battery that than can be swapped so as to double its range. This COULD POSSIBLY BE carried home by the user, not only making the bike safer from being stolen but also enabling the user to charge the battery at home. (At this point Ather has not specifically mentioned that users can carry the battery home to recharge). This one aspect would give the scooter ENORMOUS advantage OVER Gogoro Scooter which no user can recharge at home and basically it would be useless carrying home 2 battery packs when it cannot be recharged thus Gogoro has lost he biggest advantage of Li-Ion battery which is the battery is 3 times lighter than Lead Acid batteries and can be carried home to be recharged.

Seating Capacity: Ather has specifically designed the bike to be a 2 person bike with enough room and space to take in a kid as the 3rd passenger. While Gogoro has been designed as a single person scooter and the extra passenger can be managed… but it is more so as an after thought.

Ather Scooter Dashboard vs Gogoro Scooter Dashboard

Ather Scooter Dashboard vs Gogoro Scooter Dashboard

Dashboard: Although the Gogoro dashboard is interesting and  better than all existing scooter dashboards the Ather Dashboard is much better than Gogoro not only integrating street-maps and GPS but also in its look, feel and layout.

No Dealership: Ather Energy has done a major breakthrough by not going in for “Dealership Distribution” method as is the way the motor industry works. The biggest irritant about dealership is they keep requesting for “servicing the EV” (to coerce some money from the customer) even though the EV doesn’t need it. With the direct relationship with the customers will enable Ather a great deal, especially in the early days, to get customer feedback and to update and improve their product. The customers will also be more at ease dealing directly with the company as most of the time the dealership staff and owners do not like to deal with the problems of the customers.

Re-Charge: The users of Gogoro have no say or role in charging their scooters. Not only that but they have to go to a booth either near or far from their residence or work place to change their battery just like one used to do with a cooking gas cylinder years ago. But with Ather the user can decide when, where and how to charge the vehicle.

Design: The Gogoro Bike has stuck to the traditional scooter design while Ather guys have designed their bike to look meaner and aggressive and is a cross between a motorcycle and a scooter especially the forked shockabs on front, mono-shock swing-arm on the rear, exposed skeleton under the seat and aggressive tyre-treads. Look-wise the Ather Scooter scores over the Gogoro. The only place Gogoro scores over the Ather is the LED animation when the vehicle starts and the compact Gogoro battery design. In all other deaprtments Ather beats Gogoro fair and square.

Freebies & Updates: And if the Ather Energy team can give quicker charging or better maps or increase the range of batteries over free online updates or even free customer center updates the customers are going to be flattered and going to be an Ather Fan for Life.  Ather guys could possibly send emails directly to the vehicle or direct the vehicle to the nearest Repair/Service centre to replace brake pads, battery or tyre replacement or some random technical work based on of where the vehicle currently is. This is a distinct possiblity.

Market: The size of the local Indian Market for Ather is mind boggling and is its biggest advantage. While Gogoro will always struggle for a market not only in Taiwan but also in the world because of its crazy battery-recharge-strategy… for Ather setting up shop anywhere in the world would be a breeze. If the company does sales of 200,000 in its 1st year it should go public in its next year… the company has immense potential especially since they are interested to get into bigger vehicles. With the BRICS loan to India focusing on Solar Energy Ather could play a VERY big role in “…lighting up your neighborhood” with charging stations.

The final verdict is that Ather Scooter scores high over the Gogoro Scooter not only in looks and price but also in convenience of use.

 

Ather Electric Scooter to be Showcased at Surge, Bangalore

Finally after years and months of waiting… Ather is due to display its fabled Electric Scooter at SURGE, Bangalore which is Web Summit’s first technology summit which will be held in India between Feb 23-24, 2016. 

This is Gogoro Electric Scooter… just for reference… how technology can handicap a scooter to lonely single person device 😉

Bangalore, Jan 28th, 2016: India’s first smart electric scooter will debut at SURGE on 23rd February. The scooter is the maiden venture of Ather Energy, a Bangalore based technology start-up by IIT graduates Tarun Mehta & Swapnil Jain.

“Ather Energy is very thrilled to be part of SURGE as it is one of the most influential technology summits in the world…. As the launch will bring to fruition the exciting journey that we started two years ago” says Tarun Mehta, CEO and co-founder of Ather Energy on their website.

SURGE is Web Summit’s first conference in India. Web Summit is one of the biggest and most popular technology summits globally that is known to be a great platform for start-ups and investors. Over the last few years, Web Summit has seen the participation of technology players ranging from Fortune 500 companies like Apple and Google to the most exciting startups including Airbnb and Uber.

Tarun is also a speaker at SURGE and will speak on the inevitability of electric being the future of automobiles and their “uncompromising electric scooter” – with a powerful Li-ion battery pack and sub-one hour charging.

In an ecosystem dominated by software players, Ather Energy is among the few hardware startups in India. Their first product, the S340 is completely designed in-house and will commence commercial production in Bengaluru later this year.

Ather… dont need to hide behind dazzle prints or camouflage…

Ather… dont make the mistake to hide behind dazzle prints or camouflage… EVs as of now due to their scarcity in India and also due to the fact that most EVs (E2O or chinese scooters) are first generation do not need to hide from cameras…even if the vehicle would go through a future change in design… keep the ev folks informed… like the one where the scooter took had a fall and scratched… thats the kind of news the EV lovers are looking for and these kind of incidents get carried over the Social Media… depending upon how you put it out in the social media…

The biggest problem that EVs ever have in India is VISIBILITY… VISIBILITY…VISIBILITY… even today the biggest problem with E2O is VISIBILITY… VISIBILITY… VISIBILITY… there are hardly any electric vehicles on the road for people to know what is an electric vehicle and what are its advantages. People have never seen a made in India Li-Ion scooter… pictures and videos would help a lot… in Mumbai its said “Jo dikhta hai… wo hi bikta hai“… Celebs have proved this to be true…

But following in the footsteps of a petrol vehicle would be the biggest mistake EVER!

In an EV scenario… creating the vehicle is just half the story… setting up the charging infrastructure is the other half. Petrol vehicles are unfamiliar with such a scenario. Also any company who comes to create the vehicle irrespective of the lack of existence of either electricity or charging infrastructure in that area are definitely trying to climb up a greased pole.

Flaunt the bike… get it across… let it be commented or discussed… dont hold back… let the vehicle industry be shocked with a Bike Company promoting its test Mule… Let There are no Rules…

Dont do it like a Petrol Car/Bike  company does… most of them deal and do business in traditional way of how a refrigerator was sold 20 yrs ago… They usually pull off a silk cloth over the vehicle  and hoist the scooter one final day… and then say ok we have opened the bookings let the money roll in…

If an EV company does this then people usually go… “I was not expecting this”, “expensive”, “do you have pink?”, “too powerful”, “we have power cuts in our area in our areas”, “I cant take it on vacation to the next state”, “I was going to order, but I have to pay my rent” & 101 excuses… but these are people who will not be buying the vehicle.. but have a lot of time to kill on the Internet.These could also be of people who have liked your Facebook page…

What about those people who would be interested as they find the vehicle useful and convenient but is not aware of the bike. In case of such people the news of the scooter will reach him probably 300 days after the bike is showcased in the Dealer showroom. To enable faster reach and wider publicity Ather Energy will have to use every energy of the Social Media and Indian EV websites mainly. And to make this happen they have to stat putting out interesting images & videos of the scooter…

So dont undermine Social Media… it would sell much more vehicles EVER than TV, Radio or Newspaper advertisment TOGETHER!!! Put out as many images and videos of the vehicle but make sure each is different and unique and never repetitive like the NanoGenX “Factory Visit” campaign.