With the S1 range of electric scooters, Ola Electric recently concluded a year of operations in India. The new player in the electric mobility segment started with flying colours, creating a strong demand backed by promising claims and new-age marketing. In one such marketing campaign, Ola Electric recently did a long ride in the gruelling conditions in the Himalayas, with which it tried to showcase the prowess of electric vehicles in challenging geographical conditions.
However, if a Twitter post is to be believed, the claims of Ola Electric to ‘end the ICE age’ is far from actual. In a Twitter post uploaded by Pradeep M (@Pradeeponwheels), we can see a bunch of Ola S1 Pros getting charged using a power supply from a diesel generator in the backdrop of the Himalayas. The post claims that these scooters are the same ones which Ola Electric showcased in its recent marketing campaign.
The campaign was to show the capabilities of the Ola scooter
In this campaign, Ola Electric tried to show that its S1 Pro is capable enough to be ridden effortlessly in the tough conditions of Ladakh in the Himalayas without much hassle. And yes, we can see the riders and the scooters doing precisely that.
However, the scooters required an external electricity supply from a diesel-powered generator, and it shows that the S1 Pros ran out of their charge and did not find suitable charging stations to get their batteries charged. But this is only to be expected. The vlogger himself says that fuel stations are quite rare in those regions, and electricity is often available through the use of generators only.
We do not see any issues here though. When traveling through places with minimal infrastructure, it is not going to be possible sometimes to find a charging point or charging station. Those woud come, and would come fast.
In his YouTube video, he praised the marketing strategies of Ola for claiming to end the ICE (internal combustion engine) age. He was not so sure about the use of diesel electricity generators though. He said that Ola Electric should create a suitable charging infrastructure before claiming to put an end to the conventional vehicles running on IC engines.
The Twitter post with the picture of the S1 Pros being charged using the diesel generator attracted much attention. Some Twitter users tried to defend Ola Electric’s claims citing the lack of charging infrastructure in Ladakh. However, there was a section of people who seconded the Twitter user and added their own opinions criticizing Ola Electric for its over-the-top marketing campaigns.
We are sure that tomorrow, there would be charging stations even in remote parts of Ladakh – the movement towards adoption of electric vehicles is unstoppable in its momentum now. We would not be surprised if tomorrow we find someone using solar or wind energy to charge electric scooters in remote parts of the country.
In the past year, Ola Electric has already attracted a lot of criticism, due to instances of malfunctions in scooters, including battery failures, battery blasts and software errors. Ola Electric also came under scrutiny for prolonged delays in its production outputs due to constraints, due to which many people started posting negative reviews about the company and its scooter. Ola Electric recently launched an entry-level variant of the S1 electric scooter, which is priced at Rs 99,999.