TVS iQube Price Hike May 2023
Although the ex-showroom prices of iQube are now higher, customers will be paying almost the same amount as earlier
Following the government’s directive, electric two-wheeler manufacturers have started adding the charger as part of standard equipment. Earlier, several of the leading OEMs including TVS required customers to pay extra for the charger. With the cost of charger included, iQube is now available at Rs 1.21 lakh (effective on-road, Bengaluru).
Prices of iQube will vary based on availability and quantum of state subsidy. Central subsidy under FAME II is Rs 51,000 for iQube. Karnataka is among the states that no longer offer state subsidy. iQube in Delhi is eligible for a state subsidy of Rs 17,000. Effective on-road price of iQube in Delhi is Rs 1.06 lakh.
TVS iQube new prices
When the charger was not offered as standard, TVS iQube was available at a starting price of Rs 1.56 lakh. With the 650-watt charger now included, iQube base variant is now available at a starting price of Rs 1.66 lakh (ex-showroom, excluding FAME-II subsidy).
For iQube S variant, ex-showroom price is now Rs 1.68 lakh. Here also, prices have been increased by around Rs 9,000. With the FAME II subsidy, effective on-road price of iQube S variant is Rs 1.32 lakh. iQube S customers will need to pay additional Rs 9,440, which is charged for software upgrade.
While technically the prices of iQube have increased, customers will be paying almost the same amount as earlier. The only difference is that cost of charger is now included in the cost of vehicle. So, there is no additional cost burden on iQube customers.
TVS to refund iQube owners
Following government’s directive, OEMs like TVS, Ather Energy, Ola Electric and Hero MotoCorp have decided to refund any amount that was charged in excess of Rs 1.50 lakh. TVS liabilities are relatively less in this context, as iQube ex-showroom price was lower than several of its rivals. At most locations, iQube was priced just a little above Rs 1.50 lakh. The average amount paid over Rs 1.50 lakh is around Rs 1,700 per scooter. Overall refunds to be issued by TVS is around Rs 15-16 crore.
It is a bit unsettling to see the issues linked to FAME II subsidy. The electric two-wheeler segment is just starting to gather pace and such issues can create problems. One recent example is 23 percent drop in MoM growth in April 2023. In case of iQube, it had achieved the 1 lakh cumulative sales milestone in April. However, its MoM growth fell by 48 percent. According to TVS, the drop is due to reduced production, triggered by ‘AIS-156 changeover and supply chain challenges’.
It is important that OEMs follow ethical practices to create trust and confidence among customers. While the charger issue seems to be largely resolved with the refund plan, such things should not have occurred in the first place. The fact that the matter was identified through whistle blower emails raises several questions.
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