Ola plans to roll out 10k electric three-wheelers in a year

Ola will add 10000 electric rickshaws to its India fleet over the next year

Ola will add 10000 electric rickshaws to its India fleet over the next year

Homegrown cab aggregator OLA has been repeatedly trying to make its mark in the Indian EV sector.

At a time when India's ride-hailing sector could be heading for a consolidation, driven by Japanese investor Softbank - the biggest investor in both Uber and Ola - the Indian firm is looking to edge past its global rival in the eyes of its backer by announcing a plan to bring one million electric vehicles on to India's roads by 2021. After all, in the next 12 months it hopes to add a whopping 10,000 e-rickshaws and electric auto-rickshaws in its service under its "Mission: Electric" programme launched today.

Ola now has more than a million drivers across 110 Indian cities, so its plan would mean electrifying the vast majority of the vehicles available via its app.

If things go to plan, ride-hailing company Ola could emerge as one of the largest electric vehicle (EV) fleet operators in the world by next year.

In May past year, Ola had launched its first electric vehicle project in Nagpur.

The EV program in Nagpur has provided Ola with significant insights into effectively managing vehicles, batteries, and operations.

Around the same time, it was also reported that a number of Ola drivers wanted to return their vehicles due to long waiting times at charging stations and higher operating expenses.

An Ola representative told TechCrunch that the company has installed charging dockets at the homes of some drivers so they can save time by swapping out batteries, stating that "with new technologies like battery swapping, the charging experience has been significantly improved". In November, Didi's fleet of partially or fully electric vehicles already stood at more than 260,000, according to the company. Ola is now in discussions with several state and municipal governments about where to launch its electric rickshaw program and is "willing to work with any city committed to sustainable mobility solutions". It added that it plans to continue exploring ways to optimize batteries and charging.

With a mission for nearly 100 percent electric mobility by 2030, the government is trying out different models to give EV a push in the country. As per the new law, it does not in any way include the sale of electricity to any person and vehicles have to be charged within premises.

Infrastructure will be provided as part of the initiative, with drivers being given rooftop solar panels and charging stations.