Swap meet: Japanese brands set guidelines for swappable EV moto batteries

Electric Motorcycles

The Swappable Battery Consortium, a group composed of Japanese motorcycle brands, has reached an agreement to standardize some specifications of swappable batteries for electric motorcycles in Japan.

The consortium was established by Honda Motor Co., Ltd., Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd., Suzuki Motor Corporation, and Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. in April 2019.

The group and the agreement aims to increase the usage of electric motorcycles in its home country, and to allow battery sharing among the brands.

The group said that electric motorcycles can be a more environment-friendly and convenient form of mobility.

Since its inception, the consortium has been formulating the standards for mutual-use swappable batteries and their replacement systems, which aim to solve issues that prevent the widespread use of electric motorcycles. These issues are the seemingly limited range of the motorcycles, and the lengthy charging time of their batteries.

To learn the effectiveness of swappable batteries, the consortium had been cooperating with the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association's Electric Motorcycle Promotion Subcommittee, the Osaka Prefecture, and the national university corporation Osaka University, to conduct field tests called the "e-Yan Osaka."

According to Honda, parts of the common specifications agreed upon are compliant with the Society of Automotive Engineers of Japan, Inc. Organization (JASO). The consortium will conduct technical verification based on these common specifications.

The Japanese motor company also added that with the worldwide demand for electric mobility, the consortium will work together with the Japan Automobile Manufacturer Association to realize international mutual use, also known as international standardization.

As environmental awareness increases globally, the consortium believes that with battery swapping, electric power can be adopted within the entire motorcycle industry, and will contribute to a carbon-neutral society, Honda added in a release.

“This agreement for the standardization of mutual-use batteries is an achievement made possible through the four Japanese motorcycle manufacturers working together over the past two years," Consortium Representative Secretary and Managing Officer of Motorcycle Operations in Honda Motor Co., Ltd Noriaki Abe said.

"Through our efforts in both cooperation and competition, we will work towards the widespread adoption of electric motorcycles to realize a sustainable society,” he concluded.

Photo from Honda

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