By Vugar Khalilov
Turkey’s Automobile Enterprise Group’s (TOGG) CEO Gurcan Karakas has said that the company will launch its new electric car in the last quarter of 2022, Yeni Shafak has reported.
The electric car's price will be competitive compared to the price of an internal combustion C-SUV and will be determined by late 2022 and early 2023, Karakas said.
In terms of quantity, he added that the state has an agreement to purchase 30,000 units from the company within 15 years that will make it available for everyone.
“We plan to produce 1 million 80,000 vehicles in five different segments by 2030. First of all, we determined the annual production as 100,000 units and the next production as 175,000 units. But in case of high demand, we can increase our capacity very quickly, three months in advance. Our first productions will start with the C-SUV, and in the following period, we will have B-SUV and sedan models,” Karakas underlined.
He noted that the company considers exporting the car following the 18-month test period to big countries such as Germany and France, as well as to the Scandinavian ones. Depending on the results, the test period can be reduced by three months, he added.
Speaking about the charging infrastructure for electric cars, the CEO said that they have long been working in coordination with the government on this. The company has planned to establish a charging unit in every 25 square kilometers in densely populated areas and in 50 square kilometers in regions with low population density, Karakas noted.
He emphasized that 75 percent of the company’s suppliers are domestic ones and the share of the national capital amounts to 51 percent, which is planned to grow by 68 percent in three years. The company invested in localizing strategic technologies as well, he added.
Karakas stressed that TOGG’s contribution to the Turkish economy will be more than 50 billion euros, including 7 billion euros to the current account deficit.
The international tests of the vehicle are underway and nine of these tests have been passed successfully. However, the company aims to get five stars in the European New Car Assessment Programme (EuroNCAP), the CEO underlined.
“In total, we will produce more than 60 vehicles for these tests. We are producing it at one point in Gebze with our experienced team. We could have done this abroad, but we preferred to do it in Turkey for speed and flexibility,” Karakas added.
Commenting on sales, he said that the company considers building a structure like an experience center, which differs from a traditional dealer or online sales. He added that each city can have one of these centers depending on its density.
Karakas stressed a great demand for distribution. Karakas noted the company is still working on this issue.
He stressed that together with their solution partner Farasis, they have opened a company called SiRO to produce batteries in the factory area.
“I would like to draw your attention here; I'm talking about manufacturing the whole battery, not just a part of it. Today there are five countries that can do this. Turkey will be the sixth country in the world in this sense. The batteries produced here will not be produced only for cars or TOGG,” Karakas underlined.
Turkey's annual electricity loss is estimated to be around 15 billion dollars. Electric vehicles and battery technologies can be the solution to this loss, he said.
Karakas stressed that TOGG is not actually an automobile manufacturer but a mobility company, which tries to create a mobility ecosystem in Turkey. In this term, TOGG works with many startups and gets support from the best companies and engineers in the world.
He underlined that the company also receives support from Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) and ASELSAN regarding new technologies.
Karakas said that the plant is expanding its area towards the Gemlik side. On the other hand, the assembly of a factory continues, when finished, there will be 200 robots inside. The construction of the battery plant also continues, he added.
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