More and more motorcycle manufacturers are turning their eyes to alternative power sources. Next month, Yamaha will be launching their newest e-Bike in partnership with Taiwan's Gogoro, the EC-05. KTM, Husqvarna and Bajaj had also started their development of a shared e-Bike platform that they will be using across a wide range of their motorcycle models. Ducati through an agreement with Vmoto will also be selling Chinese-sourced electric scooters soon which is primarily targeted at the Asian and European markets. There are many other motorcycle manufacturers who are exploring the possibilities of either a fully electric or hybrid gasoline-electric motorcycle.
Kawasaki is the latest to explore an electrified future, having just filed a patent for what seems to be a hybrid bike.
The new patent, which was published 5 days ago, illustrates Kawasaki's design that will include a gasoline engine and an electric engine within the heart of the bike's frame. The new patent design also suggests that the hybrid bike will have two gasoline tanks at the right and left side of the battery, with a possible third tank on the left side of the sub-frame, much like the coolant reservoir of today's Yamaha WR 250 models. Both the gas and electric motors are positioned together on the engine bay, just like a regular motorcycle.
The new patent also explains that, while the gas and electric motors will operate at the same time, it is also possible to include a serial power delivery system. This means the electric motor can serve as the main source of drive while the gas engine will supply the electric charge to the battery, much like a power generator during blackouts.
In case you may be wondering about the push toward electric, current Euro emissions standards and regulations are restricting the power and performance of internal combustion motorcycle engines in an effort to cut on global CO2 emissions. Many motorcycle manufacturers are having a tough time meeting low emissions requirements, while producing desireable performance. In India for example, only electric three-wheelers will be allowed to be sold after March 21, 2023, with similar electric-only restrictions for 150cc and below motorcycles to follow in 2025.
With many Asian neighbors adopting similar measures, the Philippines may be pressured to enact similar legislation, or forced to limit its offerings owing to the lack of supply from the same Asian neighbors that manufacture motorcycles.