Electric two-wheeler maker Okinawa Autotech on Saturday said that it will recall 3,215 units of Praise Pro scooters immediately to fix any issue related to batteries. According to the EV maker, this is part of its comprehensive power pack health check-up camps. The nascent EV industry in the country has witnessed about a dozen e-scooter fires in the past eight months. Three of these scooters belonged to Okinawa Autotech, one of which ended up claiming two lives. The voluntary recall comes in the wake of such life-threatening incidents.
“The batteries will be checked for loose connectors or any damage and be repaired free of charge at any of the Okinawa authorized dealerships pan India,” the company said in a statement. “The electric 2W maker is working closely with the dealer partners to ensure that the repair experience is as per the convenience of its customers, for which the vehicle owners will be contacted individually,” it added. NITI Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant also asked EV original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to voluntarily recall batches involved in the EV fire incidents. “Manufacturing of (battery) cells isn’t regulated. Battery management system needs to be strengthened.
There has been a clear partnership between battery manufacturing and battery management,” he was quoted as saying in a report. On March 31, Road Transport & Highways Minister Nitin Gadkari said in the Lok Sabha, “This is a very serious issue and we have ordered a forensic investigation into each individual event.
The government will take appropriate action after a detailed technical report is submitted in 30 days.” It may be noted that vehicle recalls used to be considered a bad word reflecting poor manufacturing processes. Since the machines are becoming more complex than before, over the years it has become a more prevalent practice in the global internal combustion engine (ICE) automotive industry. While this may be seen as a positive step towards honest business practices and consumer safety, it is only sensible and acceptable if this doesn’t become a trend to hide away EV OEM’s limited efforts on research and bringing out half-baked products.