Piaggio will enter the electric two-wheeler segment in India in the next 18 to 24 months as the scooter segment is primarily targeted
Piaggio appears to be working on an electric scooter for the domestic market and it won’t launch soon as the brand will concentrate on the existing product range further before bringing in the zero-emission vehicles in a couple of years’ time. The company is currently in a learning phase as it is looking at battery swapping technology and portable batteries for the India-spec electric two-wheelers.
Diego Graffi, managing director of Piaggio India, told in a recent interview that his brand wants to have a sustainable business case for electric scooters without subsidies. He believes that the complete adoption of electric vehicles will take time due to a number of factors. At present, the subsidies from state and central governments reduce the cost of electric two-wheelers by up to 40 per cent.
He added the supplier ecosystem in India is unprepared to meet a massive transition and manufacturing capability while admitting that the technological know-how exists. More specifically, the electric two-wheelers developed for India will take eighteen to twenty four months to arrive as the scooter segment is the primary target and not motorcycles.
The reason for the zero-emission Piaggio vehicles still sometime away is “We will have a powertrain that will be based on our specifications. We do not want to take anything off the shelf.” The Piaggio EV range will be on par with the performance-based electric two-wheelers currently available on sale and priced accordingly.
Thus, the chances of Piaggio targeting the 1.2-1.5 lakh price bracket are high as Piaggio could be developing its first electric scooter to compete against rivals from manufacturers like TVS, Ola Electric, Simple Energy and Ather Energy. Honda will step into the space with the arrival of a new electric scooter by next financial year while Bajaj and TVS have already made their mark with Chetak and iQube respectively.
Hero MotoCorp will reportedly introduce its electric scooter this year in partnership with Gogoro. Interesting developments will be seen in the coming years and since Piaggio already sells electric scooters in Europe, it does have an advantage of having an experienced team with it.