NEW DELHI: On a day when Bajaj Auto announced the return of its iconic Chetak brand in an electric avatar, the company's MD Rajiv Bajaj on Wednesday took a dig at rivals with different backgrounds for trying to create electric vehicles "out of thin air" with click of fingers.
Terming his own company as "engineers who do our own work", he said Bajaj Auto's credibility of a rich past that gives it a solid foundation for the future in the EV space unlike others who have adopted a different approach.
Without taking names, Bajaj directed his remarks to rivals, including Hero Motor Corp, Revolt Intellicorp and Kinetic Green. "It seems like in our country there is a new electric vehicle launched everyday," Bajaj remarked here while unveiling Chetak e-scooter.
He further said, "It is to our amazement how people who have spent their whole life making batteries or motors or just plain steel, suddenly want to put a coat on their stuff and manufacture electric vehicles as if it happens just with the click of your fingers, but at least they are manufacturers".
The outspoken industry leader also had some harsh words for entrants who had not been related to the auto industry at all. "And you will be more amazed to see how sometimes people, who have done nothing but imported air conditioners, mobiles and refrigerators from China suddenly want to revolutionise our roads by making EVs out of thin air," Bajaj said.
"I have been in meetings where manufacturers who have failed in IC (internal combustion) engines want to change the world with electric vehicles. And then there are existing two-wheeler makers who when it comes to making EVs invest in South based companies as if it is the job of someone else to make EVs for them," he said.
So, when all these people talk about future, he said, "I prefer to start with our past that we are not a battery or steel maker, we are not a failed two-wheeler company and we are not a venture capitalist company who fund someone else to manufacture for us, we are engineers who do our own work".
Bajaj further said, "We are a company with a very rich past, rich legacy. I think it is the credibility of this rich past that gives us a solid foundation for the future". The company is bringing back its iconic brand Chetak in an electric avatar and will start selling the model from next year in Pune followed by Bengaluru.