Electric two-wheeler startup Ather Energy launched its first product, Ather S340, in Bengaluru on Tuesday at the startup event ‘Surge’.
The company was founded in 2013 by IIT Madras alumni Tarun Mehta and Swapnil Jain and has since been working on developing India’s first smart electric scooter.
There is a growing need for a sustainable energy-based transport. "Electric vehicles are an inevitable future," said Tarun Mehta, CEO and Co-founder of Ather Energy, at Surge 2016, the startup event organised by the team behind Web Summit.
Products in general are getting into an intelligent loop of data collection, control, and intelligence, thus reducing human intervention.
However, the automobile industry is yet to catch up. The Ather S340, which has taken close to three years to build, aims to bring in the power of data and intelligence to the automobile industry.
As mentioned in a YourStory article on Ather, the Ather-S340 is a connected vehicle powered by a lithium-Ion battery pack, and features a digital touchscreen dashboard, a light-weight aluminium chassis, and can reach speeds of 72 kmph. The smart dashboard in the vehicle will enable users to create personalised profiles, choose riding modes and set other ride preferences. The vehicle charges up to 80 per cent in less than an hour. Its touchscreen dashboard contains a Vehicle Control Unit (diagnostic system) that constantly monitors the rider’s behaviour, a GPS, and an indicator showing how much distance can be travelled on the remaining charge. The personalised profile feature will allow users to create their profile comprising all the basic information.
The inbuilt navigation, Tarun said, works very differently from the plain vanilla mapping that is available in other vehicles. The map uses data to not only predict the time taken to reach a destination but will also analyse the road conditions. They will also add data on charging points on the route and time taken to reach a destination based on driving patterns and use.
Some of the features of the bike can be highlighted as follows:
- Touchscreen dashboard with 24*7 connectivity
- On-board navigation
- Range of 60 km in single charge
- 80% charge in one hour
- Top speed of 72 kmph
- 15 patent applications filed
- Manufacturing in Bangalore, Karnataka
- Online-only sales model
- Doorstep delivery and service
"There’s also a growing need for predictive analysis in vehicle maintenance. In most cases, vehicular maintenance takes place after something goes wrong. With our predictive maintenance vehicle, owners can figure out when the scooter needs a service or maintenance check," said Tarun.
Ather is backed by angel investors like Flipkart founders, Sachin Bansal and Binny Bansal, MEDALL CEO Raju Venkatraman, and Tiger Global. Tiger Global invested $12 million in May 2015.