Desipreneur Pranav and His Vrooming…SURGE

SURGE has a range of 450 kilometers and is endowed with a top speed of 120 km/hr. This electric bike designed by Pranav Singanapalli is perhaps the first geared electric bike in India. Enthusiastic Pranav and his team have found the environment at the Design Research Centre located within the lovely campus belonging to Sasi Creative Colleges. The Managing Trustee Rajdeepan has created the right setting required. Kudos to his vision! 

Design runs in the blood for Pranav. His parents Balram and Padmini are eminent academicians in the world of design. Pranav has done his schooling from Udgam School (Ahmedabad) and went on to complete his basic design programme from the DJ Academy for Design (Coimbatore). He put in about a year plus at Sunray Design Studio (Chennai) and has also done a masters on Multi-Disciplinary Design Innovation from Northumbria University (New Castle - UK). 

"While on a job in Chennai, an electric scooter was my mode of transport. I faced numerous issues for it was not up to the mark. Something had to be done and I decided to take it up. Well, most of the parts were Chinese and the range of such vehicles were pretty low. I quit my job in order to design a proper electric bike. However, I had to pursue my passion only after making use of my overseas scholarship. I began to work on my bike from home and now have shifted to the Design Research Centre at Sasi Creative Colleges," stated Pranav while showing Jaganathan and me around the facility. The well-designed cement benches and the trees surrounding added to the flavour of the moment.

The shed, spares and the youngsters at work in the new start up Emote Electric (Private) Limited would inspire the visitors. The students at Sasi Creative Colleges would greatly benefit from this initiative. Pranav had hired people by stages and some of them had been interns in his organisation. The first prototype had been ready by 2015. They ran it, made improvements and also carried out a number of tests. Learning and experience made them produce SURGE in 2018. The first geared prototype was a ready to use. 

"I began by fixing the issues that were prevalent in electric vehicles. It was better to offer a solution than complaining. I understood that electric motors were powerful and that the motor in my old scooter had the same power as one found in a mixie. I decided to increase the size of the motor and it helped my product to move faster. Smaller motors were used by the existing manufacturers. They were unknowingly functioning in a small marketplace. They addressed the requirements of kids and senior citizens for the vehicles had a small range at low speed. Therefore, it could only be used in the neighbourhood. Low speed, low range and long charging time backed by low performance and poor design were the issues. 

Hence, we improved upon the design and the addressed the other issues too. We created Surge in Coimbatore and much of it was sourced locally. The gear box was machined from an aluminium block at Coimbatore itself. Most of the inputs were from India. Much from Tamil Nadu. It was a real 'Make in India' initiative," smiled Pranav while offering me a ride on Surge. I enjoyed the ride and could sense that the product would be a hit in the market. 

The Surge team is collaborating with vendors on motor development. Pranav's interest in science has made him feel at ease with technology. The 34-year-old is always a seeker of knowledge. His curiosity has helped him. He wants to ensure that his bike would have a long life. 

This resulted in Surge becoming a bike with a long range, good speed and a low charging time. The gears added to the reliability. The bike is at 13 plus bhp and is well designed. Pranav stated that the bike would stay with its owner for 10 years. The centre of gravity has been tested and the bike is stable. Three batteries will help the rider to enjoy a long range. The bike is designed well and looks extremely attractive. It is now going for an ARAI (Automobile Research Association of India) approval. SURGE would hit the market by the Diwali of 2021. 

A lot of work has gone into the making of Surge. This start up is one of its kind from this part of the country. It is sure to make Coimbatore, the city of techsellence proud once again. Surge is a true Atmanirbhar initiative. Interestingly SURGE, the geared electric bike is born in the same city (Coimbatore), which gave 'Suvega' the first Indian moped. 

Emote has started taking pre orders and the company has received offers from Africa. The financial resources required have come from the family itself. "This is the first time in India that Research & Development is taking place in an educational institution. The students are having a hands-on experience. It is the campus atmosphere that is helping them. All the processes connected with the product and design are being developed within the compound. The industry has come into the campus. Students are excited and if education does not excite, it is not education. Students shall get energised in the process," added Pranav. 

The chassis was made by Pranav and his team. Surge has a good suspension geometry. The small and intelligent team has made good progress. Employee motivation is quite high. The workplace resembles a green house. Pranav Singanapalli is targeting a sale of 10000 bikes in the first year and is looking at a 50 % year on year growth. The vrooming Surge can climb a hilly area with a full load.  

Desipreneur Pranav is sure to Surge ahead!