The first product to launch under the Mahindra-Ford partnership is the Ford Aspire EV. Here are all the details that we know so far about this co-developed EV.
Mahindra and Ford have announced to establish a partnership in which the two car companies would co-operate to develop new models and support each other. Under the new tie-up scheme, in the beginning, the two firms will work together to electrify the Ford Aspire. Expected to be launched next year, the Ford Aspire EV will be the first co-developed product by Ford and Mahindra in India.
Ford Aspire EV will be a full-sized sedan instead of a sub-four-meter model like the currently India-spec version
Dimensionally, the new Aspire EV measures at around 4.2-meter long, unlike the current India-spec version which is a sub-four-meter sedan. Notably, the bigger dimensions result in a bigger luggage space. For the ICE vehicles, manufacturers usually reckon with the length of the vehicle as sub-four-meter models enjoy a more favourable tax rate. However, with the EV segment, all the vehicles, regardless of their dimensions, are exposed to the same tax rate of 12 per cent. As a result, there is hardly any reason to hinder car firms from extending the length of the vehicle.
The work of developing the Aspire EV are shared among Ford and Mahindra, in which Ford will provide the body shell while Mahindra will work on the powertrain and other underbody mechanics. As we all know, Mahindra has a handful of experience with electric vehicles in the India market so they would be more experienced at crafting the powertrain of the electric vehicle.
A version of the Ford Aspire with Mahindra’s electric powertrain has been tested by the Autocar team. This unofficial version is confirmed to use the eVerito’s powertrain. As revealed by Mahindra Electric, the Aspire EV employs a 380V powertrain with a larger battery pack and more powerful electric motor, which would contribute satisfactory powerful performance as well as a higher range.
It is noteworthy that Mahindra is developing a 60kW motor and a 25kWh battery pack. The new electric motor could provide twice as much as the current unit on the eVerito could make while the battery pack could deliver the range of 200 at the drive cycle, which is equal to around 150 km in real-life driving.
The Ford-Aspire-based EV model would be sold via both Ford and Mahindra network, meaning it would bear different badge. To get the subsidies allowed as a part of FAME II scheme, the price will not go beyond 15 lakh. In the beginning, the new EV will be distributed mostly to corporate companies. In the long run, Ford also aims to expand the customer band to private buyers as well.