Available in Japan this December, Honda has announced it’s first electric two-wheeler: the EV-neo.
An electric scooter with under 20 miles of range (30km according to Honda), the EV-neo is pitched as an urban business scooter. It takes only four hours to charge the EV-neo’s Toshiba sourced Li ion batteries with a 100 volt source (an 80% charge can be achieved within 20 minutes if a 220 volt source is used!).
While electric scooters are certainly nothing new, and not likely to be of hugest interest to hardcore riders in the United States, what’s really compelling by the EV-neo is the fact that owners will have to lease the scooter, instead of outright buying it.
Honda seems to think (and we’d concur) that by selling leasing the EV-neo to businesses, the leasing model that’s being pitched in the EV community has a viable way to address changing battery pack technology, may fly better in B2B sales.
Coupled with a brushless motor and lithium ion battery supply, the EV-neo is good for sub-50cc performance. Of course in the crowded city streets of urban Tokyo, we don’t really foresee business needing a ton of zip to get in-between the grid-locked cars.
Honda plans to release a consumer version of the EV-neo at some future time, and it will be interesting to see if it too is released under the lease-only business plan.
Regardless of the payment/ownership structure, make no doubt about the fact that OEM EV’s are coming. Looks like it’s time for the electric motorcycle startups to get their game faces on.