Used EV batteries from Audi e-tron's test fleet will now power Nunam's first batch of electric rickshaws which will be a part of a program to test out the viability of used batteries.
Nunam, a German-Indian mobility startup, has announced that it will announce three electric rickshaws in India that will use batteries from the Audi e-Tron test fleet to power them. The project aims to find if high-voltage battery modules could be used beyond a car’s life cycle and be utilized for a second-life use.
Apart from that, the project also claims to boost job opportunities for women in India by supplying e-rickshaws to them for the transportation of goods. Audi’s Environmental Foundation is funding the non-profit start-up with offices in Berlin and Bangalore. The start-up has created three prototypes in partnership with the Audi Neckarsulm training team, which benefits from the intensive intercultural exchange.
The first e-rickshaws powered by the second-life batteries are likely to hit the roads in their first trial project in 2023. The vehicles will be given to a non-profit organization that, women, in particular, will be able to use to transport their products to markets for sale.
In a statement, Numan Cofounder Prodip Chatterjee said, “The old batteries are still extremely powerful. When used appropriately, second-life batteries can have a huge impact, helping people in challenging life situations earn an income and gain economic independence — everything in a sustainable way.”
Considering that rickshaws in our country do not travel fast or far, an electric motor with a high energy density batter would not be required. Most of the electric rickshaws that ply our roads are primarily powered by lead-acid batteries.
Also, drivers charge their vehicles with public grid electricity which in our country is primarily coal-powered. For this Numan, will be using solar charging stations where solar panels will be installed on the roofs of their local partner’s establishments.