Honda has announced plans to put an emissions free all-electric motorcycle on sale sometime in 2010. Honda CEO Takeo Fukui said that an electric bike makes sense as the battery characteristics and driving range fits a motorcycle profile - as they are generally used for shorter trips.
Mr Fukui is confident the product could potentially be a hot ticket item for Honda, especially in emerging countries, where motorcycles are popular means of transportation. The cheap running costs would also broaden the appeal if the initial outlay was reasonable.
The move to create an electric motorbike is testament to Honda's renewed focus on small, fuel efficient vehicles. Mr Fukui said that Honda must return to what it does best to avoid a repeat of 2008's financial performance. An expected profit of USD$2.2 billion is almost 75 percent less than that recorded in 2007.
While it's unlikely that an all-electric motorbike would be a performance powerhouse, it does have the potential to be an excellent seller and another cash cow for Honda.
Vectrix, and other manufacturers, seem to be making the 'all-electric' motorcycle work. One need only look at the massive success of the humble Honda Super Cup to see that Honda has the ability to make this idea work.