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Honda to start testing electric two-wheeler in India in 2020
Honda, India's second-largest two-wheeler maker, may finally jump onto the electric vehicle bandwagon as it prepares to take consumer feedback on a test vehicle later in the year.
The Japanese giant is the only scooter and motorcycle making company that was yet to firm up plans about electric scooters or electric bikes even as its rivals have been discussing launch plans of such vehicles.
Speaking on the sidelines of the launch of Activa 6G Minoru Kato, president, CEO and MD, Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India, said: "We will start testing an electric vehicle in India that will be imported from China. It wont be the PCX though."
While Bajaj became the first large volume two-wheeler maker to enter the electric vehicle space with the launch of the Chetak others like TVS Motor Company, Hero Motocorp, Suzuki and Yamaha will follow suit in the coming period.
"The testing and studying of the EV will go on for about a year. Based on that feedback we will decide about electric vehicles," added Kato.
A top Honda executive had earlier told Moneycontrol that Honda would have to wait for the charging infrastructure to come up before taking a plunge into the EV space.
"As an electric vehicle model we have it within Honda, but we need infrastructure to make it possible. We have to talk to the government to prepare for electric mobility. Even in Japan we are still talking to the government. We are preparing for electrification but we need infrastructure," Noriaki Abe, Chief Officer, Honda Motor Company, had said on the sidelines of EICMA held in Italy.
Honda is believed to have showcased the PCX electric scooter in some of its India's showrooms to gauge consumer response. The same two-wheeler was also present at the 2018 Auto Expo.
Suzuki Motorcycle India has developed a prototype electric scooter which it will start testing it in the country by 2020.
Not only will Suzuki Motorcycles use Suzuki-Toyota’s EV technology it will also make use of the large base of touchpoints which will supposedly become charging points for its EVs.