Kathmandu, September 13
Electric vehicles (EVs) have stolen the show at this year’s NADA Auto Show 2023. The auto expo, which started on Monday, has a wide range of electric vehicles with around 60 per cent of its stall being taken up by EVs.
Brands like Toyota, Mitsubishi, Renault, Jeep, Honda, Volkswagen, Skoda, Isuzu, Subaru, Peugeot, Mazda, and BMW, which are selling only petrol and diesel vehicles, have not participated in this year’s NADA Auto Show 2023.
This stands in stark contrast to the NADA Auto Show 2019, during which the booking and sale of electric vehicles were notably low. Despite the release of models such as the Hyundai Kona, Kia Soul EV and Niro, as well as BYD and Peugeot EVs, importers were left disappointed with the lack of interest in these cars.
According to Dhruva Thapa, president of the NADA Automobiles Association of Nepal, electric vehicles have dominated this year’s auto-expo. He said this was due to a rise in electricity promotion, low maintenance costs and environmental friendliness.
“Things have changed a lot since 2019,” he said.
What has also helped is the Nepal Electricity Authority investing in setting up charging stations across the country. Recently, 51 fast charging stations installed by NEA have come into operation across the country.
Along with that, companies like TATA, MG, BYD, TheeGo, Hyundai and KIA have also invested in charging stations over the past two years.
What is intriguing is the presence of electric vehicles designed for both goods and passenger transport at the NADA Auto Show. Recently, there has been a surge in commercial EV trucks, including compact electric buses, which are now rivalling their fuel counterparts.
It appears that some well-established commercial brands were initially hesitant to join the NADA Auto Show. Nevertheless, commercial electric vehicles from brands like Foton, CG KYC, King Long, and SRM were present at the event.
In addition to this, it is worth noting that electric two-wheelers have taken centre stage at the NADA Auto Show 2023. Surprisingly, Yamaha, renowned for its petrol-powered motorcycles, is absent from the event.
Contrarily, lesser-known brands specialising in electric scooters and motorcycles have made a notable presence at this year’s expo. The substantial influx of customers at their stalls indicates a strong consumer interest in two-wheelers as well.