San Francisco: Tesla Motors today said that India will ‘definitely’ be a market for their next generation low-cost sustainable model-3, with the Union Road and Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari asking the iconic company to outline their proposals for entry into the Indian market.
During a visit to the Tesla factory here, Gadkari offered to promote joint ventures between the global leaders in electric car manufacturing and the Indian automobile companies with a view to introducing pollution-free road transport in India, especially commercial and public motor vehicles.
In his interaction with senior company officials, Gadkari proposed to the Tesla senior executives to make India their Asia manufacturing hub and offered land near major Indian ports to facilitate export of their vehicles to South and South East Asian countries.
"Tesla senior executive admitted that their manufacturing hub has to be outside the US for markets in rest of the world and appreciated the Indian offer of cooperation which they said will certainly be considered at the appropriate time in future.
"They said India will definitely be a market for their next generation low cost sustainable model-3," a media release said.
Gadkari's visit comes after Prime Minister Narendra Modi also visited Tesla Motors last year. The Modi government believes that Tesla Motors and its green technologies can play a crucial role in introducing pollution free road transport in the country.
Responding to questions from Gadkari, Tesla officials said they have future plans for trucks and pick up vans but not buses and two wheelers.
"They evinced keen interest in knowing whether there was any subsidy on electric vehicles in India. Gadkari asked Tesla executives to outline their proposals for entry into Indian market," the statement said.
Currently on a week-long US visit, Gadkari apprised Tesla executive of the progress Indian automobile manufacturers have made in the field of electric vehicles and exuded confidence that very soon Indian market will become very competitive in this sector.
He also inquired about the battery packs that can store energy from the power grid and from solar panels.
He was told, Modi, during his visit to Tesla, too was keen to know how batteries and solar panels could be the future of electricity generation for India, particularly in rural areas.
Gadkari was told that Tesla was inviting suggestions for locations in India for demonstrations, the press statement said.