Honda Motorcycle Business Briefing Summary
– Achieve carbon neutrality with a focus on electrification –
September 13, 2022
Striving to achieve carbon neutrality for all of its motorcycle products during the 2040s, as a primary goal of environmental strategies for motorcycle companies, Honda will accelerate the electrification of its motorcycle models, while continuing to advancing ICE (internal combustion engines).
Honda plans to introduce 10 or more electric motorcycle models globally by 2025 and aims to increase annual sales of electric models to 1 million units over the next five years, and 3.5 million units (equivalent to 15% of total unit sales) from 2030.
As the world’s largest motorcycle manufacturer, Honda will continue to lead the industry in this “carbon neutral era” by continuing to deliver “fun to ride” with its electric motorcycles and offering value-added products by taking advantage of the high level of compatibility. software technology and electrified models.
Honda aims to achieve carbon neutrality for all products and corporate activities in which Honda is involved by 2050. Today, Honda held a press briefing regarding its motorcycle business initiatives, presented by Kohei Takeuchi (director , Executive Vice President and Representative Managing Director) and Yoshishige Nomura (Manager).
Here is a summary of the briefing:
1. Approach to carbon neutral motorcycle products
To meet a variety of uses and needs of customers around the world, Honda offers a wide range of motorcycle products, from small commuter models to large fun models, which are used worldwide in emerging and advanced countries. . In emerging countries, in particular, there is a strong demand for motorcycles, mainly commuter models, as a lifeline for people in their daily lives; however, the popularization of electric models faces challenges such as heavier vehicle weight and higher prices. Moreover, the demand for electric models largely depends on government incentives, regulations, and the availability of charging infrastructure in each respective market.
Given these circumstances, Honda will accelerate the electrification of motorcycles as a primary focus of environmental strategies for motorcycle companies, while continuing to advance the ICE, aiming to achieve carbon neutrality for all of its motorcycle products globally. 2040s. In addition, Honda will continue to lead the industry at the forefront of its environmental initiatives.
In order to achieve carbon neutrality while meeting the wide range of customer needs and operating environments specific to motorcycles, Honda continues its initiatives to reduce CO2 emissions from ICE models, while developing models compatible with carbon neutral fuels such as gasoline-ethanol blends. To be more specific, in addition to Brazil where flex-fuel (E100)*1 motorcycle models are already available, Honda plans to introduce flex-fuel models in India as well, one of the major motorcycle markets. The plan is to first introduce flex-fuel (E20)*1 models from 2023, and flex-fuel (E100) models in 2025.
2. Electrification initiatives
Anticipating market expansion, Honda will launch electric motorcycles that meet a wide range of customer needs. Commuter models and fun models combined, Honda will launch more than 10 new electric motorcycle models by 2025, aiming to reach annual electric motorcycle sales of 1 million units in the next five years, and 3 .5 million units (about 15% of total sales) from 2030.
Details of the product launch plans follow:
(1) Commuter EV
As companies become more environmentally conscious, the demand for electric motorcycle models for professional use has increased in recent years. To meet this demand, Honda is offering the Honda e: Business Bike series models and is accelerating the global launch of electric motorcycles for business use. In addition to supplying Honda e:Business Bike series model to Japan Post and Vietnam Post Corporation*2 for mail delivery, Honda is currently conducting joint trials with Thailand Post Company Limited*3 and plans to start production and sales of the Benly e: in Thailand before the end of this month. These Honda e:Business Bike series models are fitted with exchangeable Honda Mobile Power Pack (MPP) batteries, which are well suited for business use such as delivering small parcels and solve range and charging time issues. , which are key challenges that need to be addressed to mainstream the use of electric motorcycles.
For personal use, Honda plans to introduce two commuter electric vehicle models between 2024 and 2025 in Asia, Europe and Japan. Considering the future market environment, uses and technological advancements, Honda is exploring a range of future models for personal use, including those equipped with a power source in addition to interchangeable batteries.
(2) Suburban EM*4 / EB*5
Currently, EM and EB account for more than 90% of global industry-wide electric motorcycle sales (approximately 50 million units). In China, the world’s largest market for electric motorcycles, EM/EBs are widely adopted as a convenient form of everyday mobility, and Honda offers these products by leveraging its local supplier infrastructure and development/manufacturing operations. Expecting an increase in EM/EB demand globally, Honda plans to introduce a total of five compact and affordable EM and EB models by 2024 in Asia, Europe and Japan. , in addition to China.
(3) EV FUN
In addition to commuter electric vehicles, Honda is actively developing electrified models in the “FUN” category. Based on its FUN EV platform currently under development, Honda plans to introduce a total of three full-size FUN EV models in Japan, the United States and Europe between 2024 and 2025. Honda will also introduce the Kids Fun EV model, designed to pass on the joy of riding to the next generation.
Based on its competitive “Monozukuri” (art of making things) know-how, accumulated through the development and application of platforms for ICE-powered models, Honda will develop and apply motorcycle platforms electric vehicles that combine the three essential components of electric vehicles – the battery, PCU and motor – with the body of the motorcycle. By meeting customer needs with a highly efficient Monozukuri, Honda will continue to deliver the joy of mobility with affordable electric motorcycle models.
Regarding the battery, a central component of electric vehicles, Honda aims to equip its electric motorcycle models with an all-solid-state battery that Honda is currently developing by actively using its own resources.
3. Smoother and smarter use of electric motorcycles
Improving charging infrastructure and standardizing battery specifications are key to the widespread adoption of electric motorcycles. As part of improving charging infrastructure, Honda is working to popularize battery sharing.
(1) Popularization of Battery Sharing
Honda has set up a joint venture in Indonesia, a major motorcycle market, to operate a battery-sharing service using MPPs and MPP-powered motorcycles. The JV currently operates a battery sharing service in Bali.
In India, Honda plans to launch its battery-sharing service for electric tricycle taxis (known as “rickshaws”) by the end of this year. Honda also plans to expand its initiatives to popularize battery sharing to other Asian countries.
In Japan, in April this year, ENEOS Holdings, Inc. and the four major Japanese motorcycle manufacturers*6 jointly established Gachaco, Inc., which will provide a standardized interchangeable battery sharing service for electric motorcycles and develop an infrastructure for this service. The company plans to launch its motorcycle battery sharing service this fall.
(2) Standardization of batteries
In Japan, four major Japanese motorcycle manufacturers have agreed on common specifications for interchangeable batteries based on the JASO TP21003*7 directive.
Honda is working on the standardization of interchangeable batteries while participating in a battery consortium in Europe*8 and working with a partner company in India.
To increase the added value of its electric motorcycles, Honda aims to transform its business from a one-time hardware (product) sales business into a recurring business model combining hardware and software.
In the area of software development, Honda is working with its software subsidiary, Drivemode*9, to improve the creation of new value for its electric motorcycle products in the connected domain. Starting with the commuter electric vehicle model expected to go on sale in 2024, Honda will offer user experience (UX) features that continuously enrich ride quality through connectivity, such as offering options optimal route plans that take into account the remaining range, charging point notification, safe driving coaching and after-sales service.
Going forward, Honda will work towards a connected platform where greater value will be generated not only by connecting its motorcycles, but by linking a wide range of Honda products and realizing connectivity beyond. of their product areas.
*1 Gasoline-ethanol mixture. Different blend ratios are available, from 100% gasoline to 100% ethanol. E100 is 100% ethanol, while E20 is 20% ethanol.
*2 Vietnamese postal service
*3 Thai Postal Service
*4 Electric moped category. Maximum speed: 25km/h – 50km/h
*5 Electric Bikes category, excluding electric bikes. Maximum speed: 25 km/h or less.
*6 Honda, Kawasaki Motors, Ltd., Suzuki Motor Corporation and Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.
*7 Society of Automotive Engineers of Japan, Inc. Organization (JASO) Technical Document TP21003, titled “Guideline for Interchangeable Batteries of Electric Two-Wheeled Vehicles”
*8 Swappable Batteries Motorcycle Consortium (SBMC) created with the goal of increasing the adoption of electric motorcycles and other small electric mobility products.
*9 A software developer transforming user experience for mobility. Drivemode develops smarter, safer and connected driving technology for everyone on the road.