KTM and Husqvarna electric scooters will help strengthen Bajaj’s EV portfolio
Over the next five years, competition in electric two-wheeler space is expected to increase manifold. Already there are more than two dozen players in this segment. Bajaj will be keen to grab significant market share in this segment, a goal that is already being pursued with Chetak electric scooter. To give more options to customers and expand its EV portfolio, Bajaj has planned to launch KTM and Husqvarna electric scooters in the Indian market.
Made in India products
Just like Chetak, KTM and Husqvarna electric scooters will be manufactured in India. To reduce development cost, these new electric scooters will share the same platform as that of Chetak.
However, KTM and Husqvarna electric scooters are expected to be sportier, trendier and futuristic, as compared to retro-styled Chetak. While Chetak can work for all age groups, KTM and Husqvarna electric scooters will primarily target the young audience. These new scooters will rival the Ather 450X, which is currently the leading electric scooter in the country when it comes to performance and features.
Bajaj is currently planning to open a new production facility in Chakan, near Pune, to manufacture a range of premium motorcycles and electric vehicles. This facility could be used for manufacturing KTM and Husqvarna electric scooters. Launch is expected by 2022.
Collaboration with Pierer Mobility
KTM and Husqvarna electric scooter will be manufactured as part of collaboration between Bajaj Auto and Pierer Mobility. The latter was earlier known as KTM Industries. In addition to electric scooters, the partnership will entail development of electric mopeds as well as electric bicycles.
On its part, Pierer Mobility is currently working on multiple EVs in power range of 3kW – 10kW. These will be manufactured at Bajaj Auto’s Pune plant. Production is expected to commence sometime next year. These new EVs will be available for sale both in domestic and international markets. As may be recalled, KTM had unveiled its E-Speed electric scooter way back in 2013 at Tokyo Motor Show. However, that project did not reach production stage.
Battery swapping infrastructure in European markets
To ensure that KTM electric scooters and motorcycles are not subjected to range anxiety in European markets, efforts are being made to develop a robust battery swapping infrastructure. Fast-charging stations are also being built. KTM has shown interest in partnering with Yamaha, Honda and Piaggio to develop common-use battery swapping infrastructure. These will be used for motorcycles and light EVs.
It has already been confirmed that Husqvarna electric scooter will be utilizing a 4kW electric motor. As for the electric motorcycle named Husqvarna e-Pilen, the EV will be equipped with a modular battery system. These two products are expected to go on sale in European markets by second half of 2022.
For the battery pack, Pierer Mobility will be collaborating with Austria-based Varta Innovation. The company will also use in-house E-mobility expertise from KTM E-Technologies GmbH. It will involve development of new electric drive systems and battery platforms.