Recently, we reported that Honda is planning to conduct a study for electric scooters in India and now, as per a Rushlane report, HMSI has shown the PCX electric scooter at dealers meet. While it is too early for Honda to launch the PCX in India, it is moving in the right direction with brands like Ather, Bajaj and Okinawa furthering the EV scooter segment.
The PCX Electric is powered by a newly-developed 96V EV system with two serially-connected 48V high-energy-density lithium-ion batteries. The battery units offer a range of 41 km for a charge. The motor has an output 4.2 kW and its Interior Permanent Magnet (IPM) structure offers ample torque from low revs for smooth take-off and hill-climbing performance. The batteries can be charged in approximately 6 hours through the bike, or in approximately 4 hours when removed and charged using the optional charger. Based on the PCX series, the Electric model gets an extended wheelbase but keeps the PCX’s overall length. The e-scooter gets anti-lock braking system (ABS) for the front wheel.
In the styling front, PCX Electric is similar to the normal scooter but with blue accents. It features all LED lights and a digital instrument cluster that displays EV system information including speedometer, clock, mobile power pack charge, and charge status when connected to mains. The scooter also has the Honda SMART Key system that lets the rider to unlock the main switch knob by simply approaching the PCX ELECTRIC without getting the key out.
The same dual-battery setup of PCX Electric also powers the BENLY e: scooter which has a range of 87 km if ridden at 30 km/h and 43 km if ridden at 60 km/h. The BENLY e: comes fitted with a basket in the front, flat loading space at the rear, knuckle visors, foot brake system and reverse assist function and is intended for business use for pick-up and delivery services.
Which electric scooter will Honda launch in India?
HMSI, being a market leader in the scooter segment and the best-selling 125 cc motorcycle in the country knows well that the copy+paste method of launching products would not work in India, so the PCX electric is likely to be a low-volume product introduced to test the market-readiness for an electric scooter from Honda.
To really challenge the Ather 450 series or the Bajaj Chetak and expand the electric two-wheeler market, it needs a solution that is designed and developed 100% for the Indian market. A model like a Honda Activa electric scooter featuring connected features, swappable battery, fast-charging and built with localized parts could be a good way to start when it decides to enter the electric race.
The walkaround of the PCX electric by Youtube channel Khoz India is from the scooter’s display at the Auto Expo 2018.