Activa electric scooter will rival the likes of Ola S1, Bajaj Chetak, TVS iQube and upcoming Suzuki Burgman Electric
As electric two-wheeler segment starts to mature, mainstream manufacturers are stepping up focus in this space. In the next couple of years, we could see multiple EV products from Hero MotoCorp, Suzuki, Yamaha, KTM and Husqvarna. Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) is also expected to launch its first EV in India.
Honda Activa electric scooter
Activa is the top selling scooter in the country and the top selling product in Honda’s India portfolio. Using the same nameplate to launch an electric scooter can work to the company’s advantage. It will be easier for users to connect with the brand’s USPs such as reliability, performance and long life.
With Activa nameplate, breaking into the EV space and quickly establishing a strong presence will become easier for Honda. Atsushi Ogata, president at HMSI, has confirmed to ET Auto that the company will be readying its first EV for India by next financial year.
It is not known if Honda will be developing an entirely new EV product for India or use a tweaked version of any of its existing electric two-wheelers currently available in international markets. Either way, not much can be said about what the product will look like and the features it will offer.
Till now, the only Honda electric two-wheeler product seen in India is the Benly e scooter. It was spotted undergoing tests at Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI). In its home market Japan, Honda offers different models including Benly e: I, Benly e: I Pro, Benly e: II and Benly e: II Pro. The company has other electric two-wheelers as well such as PCX Electric, Gyro e: and Gyro canopy e:
Benly e: and its variants are primarily meant for last-mile deliveries in B2B and B2C space. However, things like powertrain and other hardware can easily be used to build a commuter electric scooter. As Benly e has already been spotted here, there’s a strong possibility that it could be used as a base for Activa electric scooter.
Honda Activa electric scooter is likely to be offered with swappable batteries. The strategy could be similar to EV players like Bounce that offer standard ownership plans as well as subscription based plans.
Users have the option to buy the scooter with battery or without battery. In the latter case, pricing is reduced significantly. Users will be required to pay monthly subscription along with a fee every time they swap a drained battery for a fully-charged one.
Honda has big plans in EV space and it has already setup a new subsidiary to manufacture battery packs. Formed with a capital of Rs 135 crore, this new subsidiary is registered in Bengaluru. It will cater to battery requirements of electric two-wheelers and electric auto rickshaws. By manufacturing battery packs locally, Honda should be able to launch Activa electric scooter and other EVs at a competitive price point.