In a bid to further curb vehicular pollution in the country, the government of India has announced its decision to allow retrofitting of hybrid electric kits in old cars. Now car owners will be able fit aftermarket hybrid systems and electric kits in their old petrol or diesel cars. That said, the government has directed some key norms and rules for retrofitment of these kits to avoid cases of spurious systems and kits.
The statement issued by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways says, “The Retrofitment of hybrid electric system kit to vehicles having Gross Vehicle Weight not exceeding 3,500 kg shall be permitted if, it conforms to Bharat Stage-II or subsequent emission norms, and it was not retrofitted earlier.” The statement also added that this applies to the vehicles that meet emission norms and are run on either diesel or petrol only.
Reports say that the Ministry has asked global automotive technology companies Bosch and Cummins to provide retrofitting technology. The cost of such conversion is expected to be a little less than 1 lakh. In fact the government also plans to ask heavy industries ministry to incentivise people going for retrofitting under its national electric mobility mission.
The Ministry has clearly mentioned in its statement that owners will have to get these hybrid electric systems and electric kit installed by authorise installers only. These installers will be approved by the registered manufacturer or supplier of such kits. It has also been stipulated that the kit manufacturer or supplier will have to obtain proper approval certificate from a specified test agency and such certificate will be valid for three years from the date of issue.
The notification also mentions that the conversion of vehicles for pure electric operation with fitment of electric kit shall be permitted if the vehicle was manufactured on or after January 1, 1990 and “it is not provided with permits for carrying dangerous or hazardous goods, as defined in CMV Rules, 1989.”