Honda Motorcycle gearing up to launch its first EV next fiscal
Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India (HMSI) is planning to launch its first electric vehicle in the country in the next fiscal year after having a detailed discussion with its parent firm, Honda Motor Company in Japan. The company aims to start the feasibility run of its electric scooters with its dealer partners by the end of the festive season this year.
While in-depth details are yet to be finalised, the company has already decided and made a commitment to launch its EV product within the next financial year, the company's President, Managing Director and CEO Atsushi Ogata, told PTI. He added that many companies, including overseas players, have started entering the EV segment in the country with support of government incentives and investments in green infrastructure.
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Elaborating further, Ogata said that customers have increasingly started using EVs for short commutes in the city environment, however for long-distance travelling and rural areas, internal combustion engine vehicles have an edge. "Some customers are using electric two-wheelers for very short commutes or very flat street conditions in big cities. So such customers have started to consider such options," he said.
He further noted that there will not be a drastic shift from ICE engines to the EVs anytime soon. “We are considering (an EV) because we have the know-how of EV technology since the last several decades, so why not consider it for the Indian market," he said.
HMSI's upcoming electric scooter will add to the company's line-up in the country. However, there are no plans to shift existing range like Activa or Shine scooters to electric over the next three years.
That's not all, the company is also planning to tap the opportunity in the battery management systems in the country thanks to the government's push for clean technologies in the automotive sector.
Other two-wheeler majors such as Hero MotoCorp is also looking to launch an electric model next year and has partnered with Taiwan-based Gogoro Inc to bring the latter's battery-swapping platform to India. TVS Motor Company will also launch a complete range of electric two- and three-wheelers in the country in the next two years.