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NEW DELHI : Bengaluru-based Exponent Energy, backed by Hero MotoCorp chairman and chief executive Pawan Munjal’s family office, will launch the world’s fastest charging electric three-wheeler manufactured by last-mile transport firm Altigreen.

The startup, co-founded by former Ather chief product officer Arun Vinayak in 2020, has built customizable rapid-charging battery packs using Li-ion cells, which can be fully charged within 15 minutes and can run up to a range of 80-85 km on a single charge. Exponent Energy and Alitgreen will roll out 2,000 vehicles with 100 e-pumps in Bengaluru for a pilot starting October 2022.

Exponent Energy has so far raised $6 million from investors including YourNest and 3one4 Capital. Arun Vinayak, co-founder and chief executive, Exponent said the company is in the business of “selling affordable energy to EV makers", specifically for commercial vehicles, as it presents the most profitable business case in the EV segment at present.

“We’ve built our e^pack for Altigreen in a way the 15-minute rapid charging solution fits into their existing vehicle with zero changes to the chassis or the assembly line. A regular battery, a larger one, charges in three-four hours. But now, they can put the Exponent e^pack, which is smaller, but charges in 15 minutes. We’re now ensuring they have this option to sell this in every city and for every city that we work together, we will support it with 100 network points or e^pumps at a minimum, and scale to a larger network in cities like Delhi", Vinayak said in an interview.

While the Centre is working on a national battery swapping policy for EVs, Vinayak said fast-charging scores over battery swapping and traditional slow-charging on various cost and utility parameters. “Small batteries with longer warranty cycles allow us to make EVs cheaper on a monthly basis for operators. Today, one pays 20-24 per unit, but we are able to sell energy at half the cost. Vehicles can also clock more kilometres, which means more revenue for the operator."

Log9 Materials has developed similar solutions for battery packs that can power-up an e-three-wheeler in 35 minutes, and a two-wheeler within 15 minutes.

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