Honda Global has confirmed plans to launch an electric motorcycle equivalent to 110-125 cc commuters in India next year. The announcement was a part of Honda Motor Co’s new motorcycle electrification strategy, which will see the manufacturer invest $3.4 billion by 2030 on new products and development. The two-wheeler giant also revised its global sales target from 3.5 million to 4 million electric motorcycles by 2030.
The electric motorcycle will come with swappable batteries and will be built in India at the company’s existing manufacturing facility. It will be launched in India first, followed by other ASEAN markets, Japan and Europe. Honda announced electrification plans for India earlier this year promising two electric offerings equivalent to 110-125 cc offerings. While one e-scooter will get a fixed battery, the other model will come with swappable batteries.
Speaking during the presentation, Daiki Mihara, Executive Officer – Honda Motorcycle and Power Products Electrification Business Development Unit – Honda Motor Co., said, “Next year 2024, we will launch an electric motorcycle with swappable batteries starting in India and followed by ASEAN, Japan and Europe.”
Honda’s India operations will play a key role in the company’s motorcycle electrification strategy going forward. The company will use its existing facilities to build electric motorcycles from now till 2027 and plans to launch a dedicated plant beyond 2027 for electric motorcycles that will also manufacture important parts in-house to reduce cost. The new plants will have a production capacity of about one million units per year, per plant with an investment of 50 billion yen (approx. ₹2,800 crore) for each new facility.
Mihara further said that the two-wheeler maker will have a dedicated electric motorcycle plant in India, which will be followed up with another e-motorcycle manufacturing facility in the ASEAN region. Honda aims to reduce the cost of finished electric motorcycles by 50 per cent through optimising batteries, adopting modular platforms, and optimising production and procurement. The new assembly lines for electric motorcycles will be 40 per cent shorter when compared to ICE vehicles.
Furthermore, it plans to make major adjustments to its supply chains in order to achieve its goal of selling four million e-motorcycles by 2030 while achieving a 10 per cent operating profit margin. Honda also plans to repurpose its Kumamoto plant in Japan to produce larger-capacity electric motorcycles equivalent to 600-700 cc offerings.
Honda’s future strategy includes bringing 30 new electric motorcycles globally by the end of this decade. The upcoming offerings will pack new technologies including advanced connectivity, OTA updates, and modern data collection systems. The company is also working on improving battery technology and will use LFP battery cells going forward, alongside NMC lithium-ion batteries presently seen on its electric offerings.
First Published Date: 01 Dec 2023, 03:21 AM IST