Bengaluru: Bounce, India’s first smart urban mobility solution, has signed a deal with Chara, a Bengaluru-based deep-tech startup that has developed motor technology that is rare-earth-free, hyper-efficient, and easier/cheaper to build. The partnership will lead to locally produced electric motors for its owned fleet of EVs. The partnership will see Chara design and manufacture customized motors for Bounce based on Chara’s innovative motor and drive technologies.
This development is a part of Bounce’s strategy to develop its owned fleet of EVs deployed for its mobility solutions. With the localization of the core component of the electric vehicle, Bounce will save a ton of imports: motors and their associated controllers are now imported in all EVs deployed in India.
Speaking on this announcement, Vivekananda H R, Co-Founder, Bounce said, “EV adoption in India has been hampered by dependence on imports for the core components of the drive-train. We are excited to be partnering with Chara to source locally produced rare earth magnet-free electric motors, which will go a long way in maintaining cost efficiencies while making India independent of the global supply of rare earth materials. We are entering a brand new age of electric mobility.”
The world is finally moving away from a hydro-carbon-based (Petrol, Diesel, Natural Gas et al. ) economy to an electron (batteries, FCV et al.) based economy. This has led to, amongst many other things, greater dependence on rare earth for building our motors, batteries, and electronics. This partnership will make EV manufacturing sustainable and empower the local innovation ecosystem.
Rare-Earth minerals are unevenly distributed on this planet and their mining and processing is environmentally harmful. The price of Rare-Earths has increased by 100% over the past year alone. Geopolitical risks and rising global demand for Rare-Earth Magnets can result in supply bottlenecks and increased price volatility. Thus under the current circumstances, Chara’s motors come with various advantages. Decoupling from Rare-Earth magnets, Chara’s motors are made with more than 100% locally sourced, sustainable raw materials, which can reduce the motor cost by up to 40%. Their simple construction and fault-tolerant electrical design provide a robust motor with high-temperature tolerance.
On this partnership, Founder and CEO of Chara, Bhakta Keshavachar said, “This partnership is a testament to our ability to partner with innovative companies that are striving towards a common goal of a more sustainable future. It is necessary to invest in deep tech to build technologies that can help us move towards sustainability in the long term and also help the country to play a more significant role in the electric transformation than just to remain as consumers.”
The novel motors custom-designed by Chara for Bounce will be locally manufactured and deployed in Bounce’s fleet at the beginning of next year. The motor, when deployed, will be the first of its kind in the world and opens up opportunities in other platforms, in domestic and foreign markets.