Pune-based Electra EV recently delivered a Tata Nano, retrofitted with a 72V electric powertrain, to industrialist and philanthropist Ratan Tata
Ratan Tata, former Chairman of Tata Group, recently got himself a custom-built electric Tata Nano. The vehicle was built by Electra EV, an electric mobility solutions provider founded by Ratan Tata himself. The company took to social media to announce the delivery of the Nano EV to the business tycoon.
From the design, this seems to be the original Tata Nano [2008 – 2015], not the facelifted GenX version [2015 – 2018]. We’re not sure if this is a prototype for a production model or just a showcase of Electra EV’s technological prowess. We expect it to be the latter, as Nano was not a very popular car in the Indian market.
This custom-built Tata Nano has been retrofitted with a 72-volt electric powertrain, although no further details were provided by the company. Electra EV offers scalable battery packs (48V to 750V), ranging from 16.6 kWh to 21.6 kWh, offering a maximum driving range of over 200 km. These batteries come with IP76 protection, heating/cooling units, and configurable Battery Management System software.
Retrofitting electric powertrains into existing ICE cars is one of the best ways to promote electric mobility. However, it’s tedious to implement this solution, as the government of India requires the powertrains to be approved by ARAI for individual models. That means companies cannot simply build and sell a one-shoe-fits-all EV powertrain without appropriate testing by ARAI, which is extremely expensive.
Currently, a few companies like Northway Motorsports, Loop Moto, E-Trio, GoGoA1, etc., are offering EV conversion solutions for a limited number of passenger cars and two-wheelers. However, with the push for electrification in India, EV conversion kits will become more popular in the coming years.
It is worth mentioning that Tata Motors currently leads the electric passenger car market in India, thanks to Nexon EV and Tigor EV. The manufacturer is planning to add more electric cars to its range in the future, including Altroz EV, Punch EV, Sierra EV, and a new midsize electric SUV (currently being referred to as ‘Blackbird EV’ by the media).