The Japanese Big Four Takes a Big Test
In April 2019, it became known that the big four Japanese motorcycle manufacturers – Honda, Yamaha, Kawasaki and Suzuki – are forming a consortium to work together on electric two-wheeled vehicles. As part of the joint development, they promised to create a universal platform of quick-change batteries for electric motorcycles and scooters. After a period of calm, interesting news came out from this team.
The four companies are conducting a large demonstration test in cooperation with Osaka Prefecture and Osaka University, and this test will start in September 2020. The event they call “e-Yan Osaka”, and within the framework of it, students and staff of the university will be provided with electric two-wheelers for everyday use. Also, charging stations will be installed on a certain territory and remote monitoring of vehicles will be carried out – how things are going in general, what is the average mileage, how often users will put their vehicles on charge, what bottlenecks arose during use. The group is also tasked with examining the usability, utility, and bottlenecks of the common architecture (ie, is it beneficial for manufacturers to use one common battery format).
Fans of electric vehicles and / or Honda motorcycles are probably already aware of the company’s Benly: E and PCX Electric scooters. But it is not yet known whether these models will have anything to do with joint work within the consortium, and even more so – whether they will be included in these large-scale tests.
And this, by the way, is an interesting question: which models will participate in the tests. Honda, Yamaha and Suzuki generally have no problem with that, but what about Kawasaki? Have they finally gotten ahead with their long-standing Concept J electric tricycle project that was unexpectedly reminded of in a promo video in 2018?
It is possible, of course, that Kava has other designs, especially since the Green representative looked quite smug. And no wonder: if they are already participating in this event, then most likely something new has appeared in the line of Kawasaki scooters (which until now consisted of a couple of gasoline models that are almost impossible to buy in Russia), something new, moreover, electric!