Honda, Yamaha, KTM, Piaggio to collaborate to standardize a swappable battery system

A ‘Swappable Batteries Consortium” for motorcycles and light EVs will be created
by TopGear.com.ph | Mar 1, 2021
PHOTO: Honda, Yamaha, KTM, Vespa

Big news for both the automotive and motorcycle industries: manufacturers Honda, KTM, Piaggio, and Yamaha have signed a letter of intent to create a new ‘Swappable Batteries Consortium for Motorcycles and Light Electric Vehicles.’

According to Honda, the founding members of the Consortium will participate in the creation of international technical standards for the swappable battery system for L-category vehicles, mopeds, motorcycles, tricycles, and even quadricycles. The companies will work with stakeholders and various standardization bodies in the process.

The standardized swappable battery system will help build cost-efficient batteries with longer ranges and shorter charging times. Members of the Consortium believe that this will help pave the way for the widespread use of light electric vehicles. 

“The worldwide electrification effort to reduce CO2 on a global scale is accelerating, especially in Europe. For the widespread adoption of electric motorcycles, problems such as travel distance and charging times need to be addressed, and swappable batteries are a promising solution,” said Honda Motor Company motorcycle operations managing officer Noriaki Abe. “Honda views improving the customers’ usage environment as an area to explore cooperation with other manufacturers while bringing better products and services to customers through competition. Honda will work hard on both fronts to be the ‘chosen’ manufacturer for customer mobility.”

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“I believe the creation of this Consortium holds great significance not just for Europe but the world as we move towards establishing standards for swappable batteries for light electric vehicles,” said Yamaha Motor Company chief general manager of motorcycle business operations Takuya Kinoshita. “I’m confident that through work like this, the technical specs and standards that currently differ by regional characteristics or the state of the industry in different markets will be unified, and, in the future, will help lead towards maximizing the merits of electric power for customers on a global level.”

“Sustainability is one of the key drivers to the future of mobility and electrification will play a major role in achieving this goal. For powered two-wheelers, the constraints of electric drivetrains regarding range, charging time, and initial cost are still evident. To overcome these challenges and provide a better customer experience, a swappable battery system based on international technical standards will become a viable solution,” said KTM AG CEO Stefan Pierer. “We are glad to be part of the Consortium as we strive towards our goals in the e-mobility sector.”

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“An international standard for the swappable batteries system will make this technology efficient and at the disposal of the consumers,” Piaggio Group chief of strategy and product Michele Colaninno. “Finally, a strengthened cooperation among manufacturers and institutions will allow the industry to better respond to the main challenges of the future of mobility.”

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PHOTO: Honda, Yamaha, KTM, Vespa
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