Can I do Cuttack – Puri round trip with the new Tata Nexon EV? Is it cheaper to run than a diesel? Where will I charge it?
The newly-launched Nexon is the most affordable long-range electric vehicle you can buy in India. The biggest limitation of electric cars is range. The Nexon can do 312 km on a single charge. But this is the ARAI rated figure. The average real-world range lies somewhere between 180 to 220 km according to experts. The reason for this is electric cars are efficient at low speeds, and consume a lot of power at highway speeds. The range varies a lot on how and where you drive. The Nexon EV has 60 per cent more torque in the ‘Sport’ mode, which can eat into the range fast.
So, to answer the first question, yes, Cuttack to Puri round trip is doable but you might want to keep an eye on the range meter if drive much in the ‘Sport’ mode. Fear not, the connected app and on-board computer will help you decide the speed and also cut down on power if the charge becomes low. It isn’t unrealistic to predict that electric vehicle charging stations will pop up at parking lots of popular places such as the Jagannath Temple in Puri and bigger hotels.
How does it stack up with the petrol and diesel counterparts?
|Tata Nexon XE||–||Rs 6.95 lakh||Rs 8.45 lakh|
|Tata Nexon XM||–||Rs 7.7 lakh||Rs 9.2 lakh|
|Tata Nexon XMA||Rs 13.99 lakh||Rs 8.3 lakh||Rs 9.8 lakh|
|Tata Nexon XZ||–||Rs 8.7 lakh||Rs 10.2 lakh|
|Tata Nexon XZ+||–||Rs 9.7 lakh||Rs 11.2 lakh|
|Tata Nexon XZA+||Rs 14.99 lakh||Rs 10.3 lakh||Rs 11.8 lakh|
|Tata Nexon XZ+ (O)||–||Rs 10.6 lakh||Rs 12.1 lakh|
|Tata Nexon XZA+ (O)||Rs 15.99 lakh||Rs 11.2 lakh||Rs 12.7 lakh|
There is a difference of around Rs 4.7 lakh and Rs 3.2 lakh with the petrol automatic and diesel automatic variants of the Nexon respectively. Almost all electric vehicles have automatic transmission. The running cost of Nexon EV is around Rs 1 per km depending on your electricity rates, while that of petrol and diesel is around Rs 5-6 per km. Note that maintenance-wise, electric cars require lesser parts as there are no engine oil and filters to replace. To make up for the initial price difference, the break-even will come after at least a lakh kilometres. Then there’s the question of the 30.2 kWh battery replacement though Tata’s 8-year/1.6 lakh km warranty is reassuring.
Who Should Buy It?
Financially, the Nexon EV is a tough call. If your state is giving a subsidy like Rs 1.5 lakh off in Delhi, then the return on investment is quicker. Else, with interests, it won’t save you money immediately unless oil prices increase dramatically. Odisha is yet to announce EV subsidies.
However, EVs do make sense if you do a lot of city driving in choc-a-block traffic. That’s where the regenerative braking works more and EVs give the best efficiency. If you are stuck in traffic, you are consuming no energy unlike idling in internal combustion engines. If your AC is on, just the power required for the AC is consumed.
Also, the joys of owning an electric car are unparalled. You will never have to visit a petrol station, your service timings will be better and the air around you will be cleaner. That’s not all, the Nexon EV has more power (129PS) and torque than its petrol and diesel counterparts. All EVs have good acceleration times, the Nexon EV does 0-100kmph in 9.9 seconds. The lower centre of gravity makes EVs more fun to drive than gasoline vehicles. If you do regular inter-city drives longer than 200km, the Nexon EV will probably not suit you.
As for charging is concerned, most of the charging will happen at home. You will plug in the charger when you reach home and plug out when you take it out. The Nexon takes around 8 hours to recharge using the charger supplied. For longer journeys, Tata is setting up 300 DC fast chargers which can juice up the Nexon to 80 per cent in less than an hour.