Publish Date: 17th November 2020

CERCA at IIT Delhi launches electric mobility initiative

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Centre of Excellence for Research on Clean Air (CERCA), an academic think tank and research centre at IIT Delhi for clean air, launched its maiden initiative on electric mobility with the retrofitting of an old vintage Beetle car of 1948 model into an electric vehicle on Monday (Nov 16). The program was attended by several members of the Heritage motoring club of India.

While launching the electric Beetle at the IIT Delhi campus, Prof V Ramgopal Rao, Director, IIT Delhi said, “E-mobility has been the buzzword in the automobile industry and the need to adopt e-mobility is not just essential, but pressing for safeguarding the planet since the last half-century has seen adversarial changes in climatic conditions as a result of the ever-increasing pollution with vehicular emissions being one of its major contributors. It is high time to realize the damage already caused and bring a halt to this by shifting to more sustainable alternatives such as electric vehicles which are the right, and the most suitable substitute. With Indian startups spearheading a revolution in this area especially battery technology, vehicle diagnostics, analytics and charging; the time is not far when India will also join the league of EV capitals.”

Prof Rao lauded the efforts of CERCA for this initiative and for increasing awareness for faster adoption of electric vehicles”.

Mr. Arun Duggal, Founder of CERCA and a former IIT Delhi Alum in his message said, “Centre of Excellence for Research on Clean Air has been established at IIT Delhi to promote research and actions to reduce Air pollution. Electric Beetle is a symbolic action to demonstrate that we can take actions to eliminate air pollution in Delhi/NCR and in India by use of technology and innovation. One of the most amicable answers to the problem of Air pollution today is the transition to EVs which are considered 100 per cent emission-free as they do not release any toxic gases into the environment which is already in a critical state in several parts of the country.”

Mr. Diljit Titus, Secretary of the Heritage motoring club of India, a celebrated lawyer who founded his firm Titus & Co and also known in the Capital for his most enviable collection of vintage cars said, ”Converting a Classic to electric drive is a significant upgrade and a more environmentally friendly choice especially if the classic does not have an engine or has the wrong engine or otherwise can’t be used. Converting to electric gets better torque and also increases the life of the Classic. Thousands of Classics in the west have been converted to electric over the years and there are many collectors across India owning multiple Classics who may actually opt to convert at least one of their cars as a part of this pioneering initiative by CERCA, IIT Delhi. I plan to send one of my Classics this month for conversion to electric drive to do my bit to reduce pollutants and to enjoy driving using clean technology. Since only the engine and a few components are removed to convert, one can refit the original petrol engine to easily bring the Classic back to original.”