According to a recent report by TOI, Honda 2-Wheelers said that they are open to collaborate with their rivals to work on e-scooters in India. The Japanese two-wheeler giant had already stated that they have no plans to enter the electric two-wheeler market before 2020.
The president and CEO of HMSI (Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India), Minoru Kato said that the collaboration with other brands is possible in areas such as electric vehicles, battery swapping, and perhaps the charging infrastructure.
He also said that there is no concrete discussion that has been initiated. They are yet to make any formal proposal. When asked about the Niti Aayog’s proposal to mandate only electric 2-wheelers in the sub-150cc category from 2025, the CEO said that 2025 is too early to go 100% electric.
Honda would be the first company to take an initiative where a two-wheeler maker is willing to partner its rivals to tackle the challenges related to the development of electric vehicles and the charging infrastructure. Previously in the Japanese market, brands like Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki, and Suzuki also decided to collaborate in the field of electric vehicles and battery swapping technology.
The chairman of TVS Motor, Mr Venu Srinivasan recently said that the unrealistic deadline for the mass adoption of electric 2-wheelers in India may create consumer discontent and will risk derailing auto manufacturing that supports four million jobs. Also, Niti Aayog has been criticised by these leading two-wheeler companies such as Bajaj Auto, Hero MotoCorp, and TVS Motor over their proposal. The brands have termed it ‘unrealistic’ and ‘ill-timed’ as it comes at the peak time when the industry is preparing for BS6 emission norms.
Recently, Honda 2-Wheelers India launched its first BS6-compliant scooter which gets fuel-injection as standard. The upgraded model of the Activa 125 Fi comes with a much-advanced instrument console which displays lots of helpful information such as real-time mileage and distance to empty. The pre-bookings are open and the scooter will go on sale in September 2019. It will be available in six shades and is expected to be priced around INR 65,000 (ex-showroom).
Source: Times of India