Monthly Archives March 2021

Japanese bicycle makers agree that interchangeable batteries for mutual use should be standardized

There was a time when car companies were trying all kinds of crazy ideas to make electric cars stand. One of those ideas (people always try to make this happen) involved cars from different brands sharing swappable batteries.

The obstacles to making this a reality for the auto industry are, of course, immense, and we will probably never have the opportunity to see such a thing happen on a large scale. But maybe the motorcycle industry can do things a little differently.

In 2019, Honda, Kawasaki, Suzuki and Yamaha formed the so-called Consortium of Exchangeable Batteries for Electric Motorcycles. The main objective of the organization was to define the standards that would govern future interchangeable batteries for mutual use so that everyone could benefit from a shared technology.

It took the four companies some time, but this week they finally announced that they had reached an agreement to standardize said batteries. What exactly that means hasn’t been made public yet, but we can all imagine a future where you could easily use a Honda’s electric battery to power your Yamaha.

“As we continue to cooperate to create an environment for mutual use of batteries based on our agreement, we will also compete to develop attractive products that meet the needs of our customers.” Honda chief executive Noriaki Abe said in a statement as if trying to tackle the concerns could mean some kind of alliance between the four.

“Through our cooperative and competitive efforts, we will work towards the widespread adoption of electric motorcycles to achieve a sustainable society.”

This week’s deal covers electric motorcycles, but Honda and Yamaha are involved in something similar, this time with KTM and Piaggio. This agreement covers L-category vehicles (mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles with a maximum continuous rated power of 4 kW/ 5 ch).

The hope is that any work done during these initiatives can lead to an international standard.


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