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Fossil Fuel Familiarity & Cultural Roadblocks to EVs in India


Electric Vehicles (EVs) are all over the headlines, celebrated as green champions safeguarding our planet. Yet, despite a series of grand launches in India, they lag behind their fuel-guzzling counterparts. So, what’s causing this inconsistency? Could limited charging facilities and costly batteries be responsible for putting people off EVs in India, or is there more to it?

Hold tight! We’re about to hit some speed while we navigate through the real speed bump – the human factor.

1. Familiarity Breeds (Fossil) Fuel:

Our beloved petrol and diesel-powered engines have blessed our ears with their low-droning noises for so long. We are accustomed to their soft lullabies and find comfort in the familiar gas station pit stops during our long road trips to the Uttarakhand mountains. It should be evident that many families tend to see the silence of an EV as uncanny, making it a hard adjustment.

2. Range Anxiety – A Real Monster:

Imagine going on a road trip, not toward breathtaking landscapes, but toward the nearest charging station. This is often referred to as “range anxiety”. A developing charging system within India frequently worries people – will their electric vehicle fail before they can reach another charge point? Until this fear vanishes completely, there’s no hope for EVs pushing past city boundaries and truly rivalling our affection for lengthy trips.

3. Big (and Joint) Family, Big Dilemma:

The Indian family car isn’t just any ordinary car; instead, it’s a vessel of memories, hauling aunties, uncles, and occasionally Bella, the golden retriever. Because of the Indian family’s urge to group up in their SUVs, EVs struggle due to their smaller cabin space and limited boot capacity, resulting in the families preferring the good old spacious six-seater SUVs we know and love.

4. The Thrill of the Fill:

For some, a car isn’t just a mode of transport; it’s an expression of their identity. And what screams “arrival” louder than pulling up to a gas station in a big, shiny SUV, tanking up with a flourish? EVs, on the contrary, with their silent charging, lack that thunderous, engine-rumbling performance. For some, the lack of that flashy aspect takes away a bit of the swagger of the vehicle.

So, what’s the way forward? Awareness campaigns, better infrastructure, and attractive government incentives are required. But it’s just as important to understand the cultural differences and deal with the worries stopping people. As long as we can’t bring technology and tradition together, EVs may only be a cool concept but not an everyday companion on India’s roads.

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