The finalized agreement for a Swappable Battery Consortium, will bring a standardization for battery technologies, and the co-development between the companies models.
Almost 6 months ago we caught the report by all four major players in the two wheel space, Honda, KTM, Piaggio and Yamaha all announced they have signed a letter of intent to form a swappable battery consortium. Just a few days ago, the companies had finalized the agreement, officially forming the swappable battery consortium.
In the statements, each of the companies state their commitment to widespread use of light electric vehicles. In the list are mopeds, scooters, motorcycles, tricycles and quadricycles. Honda, KTM, Piaggio and Yamaha will now join forces and set out to have more brands and manufacturers globally to adopt their shared standards and specification.
The goal of the Consortium is to find solutions for the range, charging time, infrastructure, and costs, which are some of the main issues for (some) riders thinking of going electric. The Consortium plans to achieve that in accordance with four primary goals:
- Develop common technical specifications of the swappable battery systems
- Confirm common usage of the battery systems
- Make, and promote, the Consortium’s common specifications a standard within European and International standardization bodies
- Expand the use of the Consortium’s common specification to global level
We went to check which are the possible models that each company will have adhere to the standard set for battery technologies in the consortium.
KTM F&E, actually stands as one brand in a group that includes both Husqvarna, GasGas and Raymon E-bikes (Pierer mobility), and we would expect to see the battrery swapping for most of the brands in the group.
“The signing of this Consortium agreement is a key step in ensuring that PIERER Mobility AG, can continue to move forward, deliver innovation at pace, and advance its clear strategic vision for electric powered two-wheelers.
Together with our partners, we will work to deliver a swappable battery system for low-voltage vehicles (48V) up to 11kW capacity, based on international technical standards. We very much look forward to ensuring that powered two-wheeler vehicles maintain their role in the future of both urban and non-urban mobility.”Stefan Pierer, CEO PIERER Mobility AG
The groups top candidates in our perspective would be the recently unveiled Husqvarna E-Pilen light motorcycle, along with their Vektorr electric scooter model which were brought to public eyes for the first time at the IAA Mobility 2021 show. KTM will probably be announcing electric models of the brand that will utilize the swappable technology in the future.
For Yamaha, just three weeks ago we covered the plans by Yamaha for a 2050 Environmental Targets with 90% of vehicles being electric. Their E01 patent hints as well as the E02 model, are both potential candidates for a swappable battery pack, but this remains to be seen.
“The Swappable Batteries Motorcycle Consortium in Europe is finally ready to get to work. I hope that this first step forward will be a beacon that draws like-minded parties to our mission and leads to transformative changes for the future. We at Yamaha Motor are confident that through this initiative, we can help unify the differing technical specs and standards and contribute to maximizing the merits of electric power for customers around the world.”Takuya Kinoshita, Senior Executive Officer, Chief General Manager of Land Mobility Business Operations, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.:
Honda also introduced similar plans in their reports, where at least 3 models will be introduced by 2024, while patents were spotter for what is possibly a CBR-125cc equivalent in electric form. But this is another model that was not unveiled yet.
“Honda believes that the widespread adoption of electric motorcycles can play an important part in realising a more sustainable society. For that purpose, we need to solve several challenges such as extending the range, shortening the charging time and lowering the vehicle and infrastructure costs to enhance convenience for customers. In the Consortium we have created, the founding members from the motorcycle industry and other stakeholders will work together towards standardizing swappable batteries, their charging systems and surrounding infrastructure to create the environment for their use. Our final goal is to ensure that motorcycles will continue to be chosen as a useful method of transportation in future mobility.”Yoshishige Nomura, Chief Officer, Motorcycle Operations, Honda Motor Co., Ltd
Piaggio already unveiled the One electric scooter, a light weight urban vehicle. The makers of the Vespa Elettrica, unveiled a moderate speed and powered scooter, with a battery pack of 1.4kWh or 2.3kWh pack. But that wouldn’t necessarily be the target size for the upcoming packs either.
“Urban mobility is going through a delicate moment of transition towards electrification. Thanks to our Consortium, representing four major global players, motorbikes will continue to play a key role in the urban context. Swappable batteries give the right answer to speed up the recharging time of vehicles offering an additional valuable choice for users. Urban mobility is part of the Piaggio DNA and history: our aim is to bring all our technological know-how and attitude for innovation to the Consortium.”Michele Colaninno, Chief of strategy and product of Piaggio Group
This cooperation will allow the four giants to form a single battery standard, for technology use and capacity most likely, and utilize a cooperation for a swappable battery system, where the power is in their numbers and the ability to deliver better infrastructure for swapping for their riders.