Earlier this year it was revealed Yamaha had patented the trademark name ‘E01’ giving rise to speculation – as with anything with the ‘E” prefix – its first proper EV motorcycle or scooter was on the way.
Now patents purporting to show the E01 have been unearthed to confirm it is indeed a forthcoming zero exhaust emissions model from the Japanese giant in the form of a scooter.
While Yamaha isn’t a stranger to electric technology and already offers a range of green-conscious models at the lower end of the scale, the E01 is its first ‘big engine’ equivalent powerplant representing 11kW of output, which roughly translates to 14bhp.
This is important because while scooters are Yamaha’s bread and butter when it comes to its lofty sales targets, it shows an 11kW motor would work for a motorcycle in the 125 bracket, such as an R125 or MT-125. By contrast, the Husqvarna Vektorr revealed last week makes do with 4kW with an 11kW version reserved for the new E-Pilen motorcycle.
For now the unit will remain in scooter clothing with the patents showing the E01 has remained faithful to the concept Yamaha displayed last year. The images reveal the design has been tidied up at the front and even boasts sunken headlights in a nod to the R1.
It is interesting to note the charging port for the E01 appears to be located on the nose, suggesting Yamaha has worked hard to ensure packaging that doesn’t affect the weight distribution as much and ensures there is still some practicality.
What isn’t clear is whether the Yamaha E01 will be available with the swappable battery technology following an agreement between itself KTM, Honda and Piaggio to standardise the format and drive costs down.
The Yamaha E01 is also significant in that it looks like it will be reaching the market before arch rivals Honda get a bigger power version out. Currently it offers the PCX electric with a 4kW motor.