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Safety First: Number of Customers Staying Away from Electric Scooters Rises 8 Times, Finds Survey

1st April 2022: During the past six months, there has been over eight times’ increase in the percentage of consumers concerned about the safety and performance of electric scooters. While the percentage of people planning to buy an electric scooter has declined, many are worried about the vehicle’s safety and performance issues, finds a survey conducted by LocalCircles. 

One of the most critical points outlined by consumers on the LocalCircles platform has been the need for a single point regulator for electric scooters, implementing Indian standards for electric scooters, batteries and any other critical assemblies as well as adherence to those standards, robust testing and approval process followed by pilot rollouts. 

“Till this is done, many consumers believe, an electric scooter should not be rolled out in the market for consumers to purchase and use,” LocalCircles says in a release.

In India, the adoption of electric scooters has expanded to buyers in metro or tier 1 cities and tier 2 towns. However, as several instances of electric scooters malfunctioning and catching fire came to light, consumers from across India raised their concerns on LocalCircles. The problems primarily focus on the safety and performance of these scooters.

Concerns have been reported about multiple brands of electric scooters catching fire, which has prompted the Union government to deploy a team of independent experts to probe the numerous recent incidents. 

Such incidents have spotlighted the efficiency of lithium-ion batteries fitted in electric vehicles from where the ignition started, and the question on the minds of many consumers is, “Are electric scooters safe?”

LocalCircles conducted a survey to understand the current pulse of household consumers on buying an electric scooter, along with any concerns that are preventing them from buying one in the next six months. The survey received more than 11,500 responses from citizens residing in 267 districts of India.

According to the survey, about 21% of the respondents are interested in buying electric scooters but are staying on the sidelines due to safety, performance, and infrastructure concerns. While 1% of households have purchased an electric scooter, another 2% are likely to buy one in the next six months.

Most electric scooters are priced just above Rs1 lakh in India. Ola’s S1 Pro and Ather’s electric scooter are priced at around Rs1,30,000. 

The percentage of consumers concerned about safety and performance of electric scooters has increased by over eight times during the past six months. 

In a similar survey conducted in August 2021 by LocalCircles, only 2% of households were concerned about the safety and performance of electric scooters. “This percentage has increased by over eight times in the last six months with 17% of Indian household consumers now losing confidence about the safety and performance of electric scooters,” LocalCircles says.

LocalCircles says it will be escalating these findings with the multiple nodal ministries on the subject such that consumer pulse on electric scooters can be considered, as the way forward on them is determined.