Mobility is a key to unlock the potential of the country’s economy and people as it keeps the engine of life running.With an aim to set the base for a transport system in India that is safe, clean and affordable, Niti Aayog – the government think-tank – recently organised the country’s first global summit on mobility, MOVE.Inaugurating the summit, Prime Minister Narendra Modi presented a very optimistic picture for electric vehicles (EVs) and shared mobility in the country. He also emphasised on 7Cs – common (common man), connected (conjunction), convenient, congestion-free (barrier-less), charging, clean and cutting-edge (new methods of development) – for the better future of mobility in India.

To meet its international commitments on climate change, India has no option but to develop energy-efficient and low-emission systems. In a bid to curb greenhouse gas emissions and dependency on fossil fuels, the government is targeting electric vehicles to account for 15 per cent of all vehicle sales in five years. As India aspires to adopt low-carbon emission path for better future, the time is right for the industry to develop sustainable solutions for mass mobility. Parts or components (especially for interiors) needed for shared mobility and electrification will be different than those currently being used.

For example, shared mobility will result in a significant change in the thought process of how the interiors are designed for safety, comfort and personalised features. Vehicles required for shared mobility will possibly require a different variant strategy right from the concept stage. The focus will be more on ensuring a smooth, comfortable and clean ride rather than enhance the interiors for aesthetics and increased accessorisation. Similarly, electrification will have a good effect in terms of interiors getting importance or more focus than before and so will become a unique value proposition for OEMs. There will be stronger need for connectivity and continuous monitoring of battery life, traffic, and other features that will have to be integrated into the vehicle. At the same time, the integration of electronic content inside car cabin is seeing a tremendous growth in the connected and aspiring world including India.

Parts required to meet the new market dynamics will also depend on the type of vehicles being manufactured. The number of component variants required in commercial vehicles are much higher as compared to passenger vehicles. Hence, the tool cost for commercial vehicle interiors becomes a major concern as the volumes are much lower as compared to passenger vehicles. New window of opportunities are auto component players as customers demand high-quality products even in entry-level vehicles in India. With the Indian automotive market expected to double from 3 million vehicles to 6 million by 2020, auto components market is poised to grow at a much faster rate in the future with specialised, customised solutions being the order of the day.

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