Earlier this month at Intermot (an international trade fair for motorcycles, scooters, and e-bikes) in Cologne, Germany, Kawasaki revealed its new EV prototype, which it promised to bring out by the end of 2022. Kawasaki announced a plan last year to offer over 10 different types of electric and hybrid electric vehicles in markets throughout the world by 2025.
The EV prototype was actually first seen at the Suzuka 8-hour event where Kawasaki decided to reveal the EV prototype and a hybrid electric prototype alongside it, giving spectators the chance to see the EV prototype in action — with its fast acceleration, yet quiet motor — in short runs on the track.
During the Intermot event, the Managing Director of Kawasaki Motors Europe, Mr. Masaya Tsuruno, gave a speech on the vision and commitment of Mr. Hiroshi Ito, the President of Kawasaki Motors, to present at least three electric vehicles globally by the end of 2022. Mr. Tsuruno also went on to say that prototype would form the basis of an actual future production machine. The Kawasaki EV is thought to be the equivalent of a 125cc motorcycle. It makes sense for a prototype machine to start out with a 125cc equivalent, in my opinion.
While the EV is still referred to as a prototype, it is expected to go into production next year without undergoing too many modifications as the first of up to 10 full-sized electric motorcycles that Kawasaki is planning to offer by 2025.
Highlighting the EV prototype at the Intermot show did give us a better look at the details and design of the machine. The battery pack is a little more sleek and incognito compared to some other electric motorcycles available. With the EV prototype, Kawasaki has done a good job of hiding some of the bulkier elements of the power unit in general. Utilizing various cuts and creases along the side profile helps make it all fit together nicely with the matte black paneling.
During the conference, Mr. Tsuruno did express Kawasaki’s continuing commitment to internal combustion engines, though. He said that both e-fuel and biofuel were among the options being considered in addition to some much-reported R&D into hydrogen as a possible carbon-neutral choice. So … Kawasaki hasn’t fully jumped into the battery-electric pool.
Mr. Tsuruno explained: “with Kawasaki’s undoubted huge internal resources and experience, Kawasaki is well placed to play a significant part in both the transport evolution via new and emerging technology, in addition to an enviable track record of internal combustion engine innovation.”
He went on to say that the company is actively involved in partnerships that are not confined to simply the two-wheel world but encompass both automotive and other future-focused technologies. “We are highly motivated and strongly connected and will continue our research and development.”
One thing that caught my eye is that the bike is chain driven, which is not really common on electric motorcycles.
Unfortunately, before you ask: details such as the battery capacity, range, and charging time remain under wraps.
Expect more details about the electric motorcycle to come soon. It is expected that the production version of this prototype will be the first model from Kawasaki’s electrified range, which is likely to launch in international markets in 2023. We hope!
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