- Says EV built for cold climates may not suit tropical regions
- Points out used EV could have HV battery damages
The Ceylon Motor Traders Association (CMTA), the most senior automotive association in South Asia, has raised serious concerns about the importation of used electric vehicles to Sri Lanka.
In order to minimise the negative impact on the consumer, environment, society, and economy, it is imperative that the country imports EVs which are directly shipped by the manufacturer with the recommendation for this tropical climate, the Association said in a statement to the media.
“EVs built for colder climates may not be suitable for tropical regions as they might not have the required HV battery cooling systems.
“EVs purchased and imported through importers who are not the agents for the respective brand, might not come with a proper warranty cover to protect the consumer. Used EVs that are shipped over to Sri Lanka may have HV batteries which could have damages that are not visible externally,” the CMTA said.
Manufacturers’ warranties are a minimum of five years for passenger cars and three years for two-wheelers, in order to protect consumer’s interest.
CMTA shared that one of its other biggest concerns is the disposal of High Voltage (HV) batteries, as they can be extremely hazardous to both the environment and groundwater systems, if not disposed properly. For this, the CMTA recommends that EV importers should sign up with a battery recycling and re-exporting company to eliminate any negative implications from poor disposal practices. It further asserted the need to establish a legal framework to prosecute people who do so.
“It is important to note that the landed cost of an HV battery could vary from Rs.5 million upwards for most EVs, or approximately 50 percent of the CIF value of the vehicle. It is therefore imperative that any EVs imported into the country must be imported within six months of manufacture, as it would negate the negative impacts HV batteries might have,” the association said.
CMTA Chairman Charaka Perera stressed the need to encourage the importation of brand new EVs directly from the manufacturer as opposed to used vehicles.
“Vehicle electrification will bode very well for Sri Lanka, and we must ensure that the necessary steps are taken to ensure these vehicles are imported properly and that they do not pose an environmental or economic threat to the country,” he said in the statement.