Honda recently patented PCX electric scooter in India while the Benly e was spotted on test by ARAI near Pune
With auto companies gradually shifting towards cleaner power sources, it is evident that newer technologies for electric vehicles will show up in the coming future. While major two-wheeler brands have already started showcasing their future electric mobility, Honda is yet to openly share its plans for electric mobility in India.
The Japanese auto giant is developing a new portable and swappable battery system called Mobile Power Pack for its future small-sized electric mobility such as electric two or three-wheelers. This is basically a capacitor that stores electricity for use as a power source. Honda is currently working on a home charger for this platform.
Testing Battery Swapping Platform In India
Reportedly, Honda is testing this swappable battery platform in India on electric tricycle taxis or rickshaws. The company, however, has released no fixed plans to launch battery-powered electric three-wheelers in India as yet and is most likely testing this platform for future electric scooters and motorcycles. The Japanese manufacturer had earlier revealed that it was serious about developing electric mobility solutions for two-wheelers which includes three new models by 2024.
These include a 50cc-equivalent electric moped while the other two include an e-scooter and e-motorcycle both aimed at the 125cc performance region. While the models do seem modest in terms of performance, they should be a good starting point for the company especially for a budget-centric mass market like India. Urban, utilitarian two-wheelers are likely to generate more sales volumes than high-performance models for the company.
Chargers for swappable batteries
Since output figures won’t be huge in these entry-level models, instead of opting for massive battery packs, Honda could use its swappable Mobile Power Pack system that is already installed on its PCX Electric e-scooter.
The company intends to expand this platform by installing more battery-swapping stations. Recent patents also reveal that Honda is working on a home charger that could juice up one battery pack at a time. While chargers at swapping stations could accommodate two battery packs simultaneously.
It is already known that Honda has also entered into a global association with KTM, Piaggio and Yamaha to co-develop another swappable battery platform. By the time this platform gets fully developed and becomes functional, its own Mobile Power Pack system will develop over time and become more universal. These developments are extremely favourable for markets such as India.
A 125cc equivalent e-scooter and e-motorcycle will give Honda the perfect start to its prospective EV lineup in India. This will lend Honda muscle to compete against local EV manufacturers such as Bajaj Chetak, TVS iQube, Ather 450X and Revolt RV400 and RV300.