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With new electric scooters being launched in India every few days, the market for electric scooters is on the rise. Though, no major two wheeler maker has officially entered the two wheeler segment yet, but all are keeping a keen eye on this segment.
Bajaj may become the first major two wheeler brand to enter this space by next year with their Urbanite range of e-scooters. Mahindra also has plans to launch electric scooters in India next year. In the meantime, Yamaha and Honda have revealed they too are planning to launch e-scooters in India.
HMSI has however stated that they would be conducting a feasibility study on electric scooters in the country. For this, they will be importing new electric scooters from China. The study and test of Honda electric scooters in India will start from 2020.
Honda electric scooters in China
Honda offers a total of 11 electric scooters in China and none in India. Of these 11 e-scooters from China, Honda hopes to get some entry level scooters which are not very expensive. Once the studies are completed, HMSI could undertake to produce some of these scooters locally so as to keep prices at affordable and competitive levels. They could even use their popular Activa moniker, and launch the Honda Activa electric as their first e-scooter in India.
It may be recalled that HMSI had showcased the PCX electric scooter at the 2018 Auto Expo in a concept format. However, the model proved too expensive for sale in the country and hence put on hold.
Earlier this year, HMSI also stated that it was open to collaborating with other two wheeler makers such as Hero MotoCorp, Bajaj Auto and TVS Motor Company for battery swapping and charging infrastructure. This idea came about after noting similar joint initiatives undertaken by Kawasaki, Yamaha and Suzuki who have collaborated in the areas of electric vehicle battery swapping.
It may be recalled that the Ministry of Road and Transport has proposed electrification of all two and three wheelers less than 150 cc by 2025 and 2023 respectively. However, most manufacturers have stated that such a proposed deadline for mass adoption of electric vehicles is completely impractical and unrealistic.
In the meantime, HMSI has gone ahead with plans to upgrade all of its 16 two wheelers in its company portfolio to comply with the new BS VI emission norms well ahead of the 1st April 2020 deadline with investment, to the tune of Rs.2,400 crores.