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Sustainable Energy Solutions to Reduce Poverty in South Asia

3.3.8 Electravan

To combat increasing vehicle population the Bharat Heavy Electricals Ltd. has developed ELECTRAVAN, is a smokeless, noiseless, oil free battery powered vehicle. It is run by an electric motor powered by a pack of rechargeable tract ion batteries positioned in the vehicle itself. The power transmission takes place through conventional gearbox and differential. The speed is controlled by an electronic chopper controller and by changing the gears. In all other respect such as steering, braking, gear box and clutch arrangements, etc.

Electravans are similar to conventional diesel or petrol vehicles. Optional battery withdrawal arrangement is provided with facilities for removal of discharged batteries and fitting of charged ones within few minutes at the battery charging stations. In view of the advantages of Electravans to fight the menace of air pollution in urban and industrial areas, the Ministry of Non-Conventional Energy Sources (MNES), Government of India gives cash subsidy to the buyers.

Battery operated rickshaws are also being used on experimental basis, to demonstrate and promote efficient, pollution-free, and drudgery-free means of livelihood for poor people, who are working as daily wage earning Rickshaw pullers, by replacing the existing manual operated rickshaws in urban and semi-urban for short and medium distance means of conveyance.


  • Freedom from highly discomforting noise and vibrations that are so common in diesel vehicles.
  • Recurring savings of petrol or diesel.
  • Ideal vehicle to keep environment clean.
  • Ideally suited as public transport in congested areas, hospitals, factories, wildlife sanctuaries, airport, schools and places of historic importance.
  • No engine related maintenance expenses and much lesser maintenance OPI chassis due to absence of vibrations.

Application Areas:

  1. Intra – City commuter service
  2. Tourist resorts, bird sanctuaries, zoological parks.
  3. Airport shuttle service
  4. Government departments.
  5. Industrial establishments, townships / satellite colonies.
  6. Postal service
  7. Mobile Banking Services
  8. Milk delivery / grocery services
  9. Golf clubs, schools, colleges / institutes welfare centers.
  10. Courier service and mobile kitchen services.

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