There’s been an avalanche of EVs launched in our market, with many options to choose from. There are hybrids, electric cars, and even electric two-wheelers. The electric two-wheeler segment, however, seems biased towards a particular type of vehicle. Think about it. Both new and old companies like Ola, Ather, Okinawa, Bajaj and TVS have all rolled out electric offerings. And while most of them do have very distinctive elements and price tags, they do have one thing in common. All of them are e-scooters.
But why is that? Why not make an electric motorcycle? We’re aware of the Revolt and the upcoming Ultraviolet offerings, but they are yet to enjoy the same mainstream popularity that Ola or Ather enjoys.
We asked Kapil Shelke, the founder of Tork Motors why manufacturers seem to be leaning towards e-scooters and not motorcycles ? His answer was simple: “Because they are easier to make. You just have to cover your endoskeleton with some plastic. It looks beautiful from the outside but nobody knows what’s inside.”
He further added, “From a motorcycle standpoint, it is the endoskeleton you’re showing. If it’s not beautiful it’ll show. All the other EV makers are trying to cover it up with plastic. It is relatively difficult to make a good-looking endoskeleton, and then make an equally attractive exoskeleton.”
Of course, one of the other obvious reasons has to be accessibility. As fun motorcycles are, they do not offer the same practicality as a scooter. For instance, the Ather 450X has a storage capacity of 22 litres, big enough to fit two helmets or a bag of your weekly groceries.
The buying pattern is reflected in the sales numbers as well. The Honda Activa was the second highest-selling two-wheeler last year, behind only the budget-friendly utilitarian Honda Splendor. India is a big enough market for both enthusiasts and practical buyers. While the scale seems to be leaning towards the latter currently, we hope it balances it out in the future.
(Image credits: Tork Motors, Ola, Ather)