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Indian firm eyes European electric car market

Indian car maker Reva unveiled two electric cars at the Frankfurt motor show this week and announced the launch in Europe of one model in early 2010 as the buzz for electric vehicles grows louder.

autos Updated: Sep 17, 2009 14:35 IST

Indian car maker Reva unveiled two electric cars at the Frankfurt motor show this week and announced the launch in Europe of one model in early 2010 as the buzz for electric vehicles grows louder.

In its first major presence at the German show, Reva presented the NXR city car that is to be built at a new plant in Bangalore and will retail for less than 10,000 euros (14,700 dollars) for a city driving model.

A two-seater NXG coupe that was shown here as a prototype is due to follow in 2011, the company said yesterday.

Reva co-founder Chetan Maini said electric cars, which were a major feature of the fair, had come of age.

"We are for the first time seeing everything come together, the technology and people's concerns about the environment," he said in an interview.

"The world cannot afford conventional cars anymore."

A surge in global oil prices last year had helped raise people's consciousness, he added.

"Five years ago I don't think people were thinking about electric cars," said Maini, Reva's deputy chairman and chief technical officer.

When consumers mull a purchase now however, "they would at least consider an electric car," Maini added.

Reva will launch its Bangalore output with capacity of 300,000 vehicles per year.