Previously, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India had stated that the company will stay away from electric two-wheeler space at least until 2020. Now, YS Guleria, Sr. VP, Sales & Marketing, Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India, has confirmed that the company plans to do a study for its existing electric scooters from the Q1 FY2021.
Below is what Guleria said about HMSI's plan to start testing EVs:
One thing that’s been made clear by the Government is that there is no 2025 deadline, but, at the same time, EV technology is something that is already available with Honda in our scooters. So, we are planning to do a study for our existing electric scooters starting from the first quarter of the next financial year, and based on the outcome of that we’ll further refine our EV roadmap for the future. As of now, there are no plans to launch as such.
While the Sr. VP, Sales & Marketing gave a rough timeline about the company’s strategy for electric vehicles, he did not reveal product-specific details. However, regular followers would know that the Indian arm of the Japanese two-wheeler arm had showcased the PCX electric scooter, in concept form, at the Auto Expo 2018. Minoru Kato, President and CEO, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India, said in another interview (June 2019) that the company is open to collaboration for battery swapping and charging infrastructure.
The Ministry of Road and Transport has dropped its ambitious plan of mass electrification of two-wheelers under 150 cc by 2025. This would provide some relief to the manufacturers and give them sufficient time to study the market.
While Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India is yet to commence the study of its electric vehicles, Bajaj Auto is all set to introduce its first electric scooter, the Chetak. The new Bajaj Chetak electric scooter will be launched in India next week (14 January 2020). TVS Motor Company, on the other hand, is in advanced stages of developing its own range of electric two-wheelers, and we expect to hear more details from it very soon.
Hero MotoCorp appears to have started the process of entering the electric two-wheeler space. The company has a stake in Ather Energy and may use the expertise of the Bengaluru-based electric two-wheeler manufacturer to develop its own EVs.