Bajaj is in the process of developing a more affordable version of its Chetak electric scooter, and a test model has been spotted and the new iteration will come with some cost-saving measures while retaining its familiar design.
Battery and Motor
The upcoming Chetak EV will use a 2.9kWh battery pack and a new hub-mounted motor. This marks a shift from the existing Chetak's mid-mounted motor with a set-down gearbox. These changes aim to reduce costs although the performance is not expected to be significantly compromised.
Features and Competition
The low-cost Chetak retains its predecessor's clean and appealing design and it is expected to feature LED lighting, alloy wheels, a front disc brake, single-sided front suspension, and more. It's unclear if the digital instrument console with phone connectivity, found on the existing Chetak, will be retained.
This more affordable Chetak will face competition from electric scooters like the Ather 450S, Ola S1 Air, TVS iQube, and others in its segment.
Pricing and Challenges
The Bajaj Chetak has witnessed fluctuating pricing since its launch in 2019. Initially positioned as one of the most affordable electric scooters made in India, it later became one of the more expensive options due to multiple price hikes. Bajaj has recently offered a substantial discount on the Chetak, bringing it back to the more affordable side. The final pricing of the low-cost Chetak will depend on various factors, including government EV subsidies.
The shift to plastic bodywork, away from the current metal design, is also under consideration to reduce manufacturing costs. However, this could potentially affect the Chetak's iconic metal body which is one of its distinctive features.
The Chetak is known for its efficiency, even with a 2.9kWh battery pack, in comparison to rivals from Ather, Ola, and TVS. As Bajaj works on this more cost-effective version, the focus remains on maintaining performance levels and ensuring competitive pricing in a dynamic EV market.