"Make hay while the sun shines 'cuz we're on our way and we're bringing some serious rain," is the message Honda and Yamaha are sending to the new electric motorcycle companies that have been springing up like daisies. Only one of the two long-established Japanese brands has shown off battery-powered concepts in the recent past and neither has offered any for sale to the public. This has allowed new start-ups like Vectrix to begin establishing a strong presence. No more. Well, in a year or two, no more. Maybe.
Honda and Yamaha have reportedly both set launch dates for electric motorcycles. YaMoCo is looking at 2010 to offer a bike with 50cc-like performance with a 100km (62 mile) range. Not too impressive, but it's a start. HoMoCo Honda, for their part, is targeting a model for a 2011 launch that is suited for the Japanese postal service who are said to be moving their 90,000-strong bike fleet to electric power. Lithium ion seems to be their battery chemistry of choice for the Japanese firms. While not seemingly overwhelming in the performance department, we suspect the two may be able to offer their wares at very competitive prices.

[Source: Reuters]

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