April 13, 2010

Honda Announces New Electric Scooter

Japan's Honda Motor Company announced a new electric scooter on Tuesday that targets domestic business customers like pizza delivery services.

A lithium-ion battery and a 50cc petrol engine, which makes no noise and can travel 19 miles on a single charge at up to 18 miles per hour, power the EV-neo.

Honda said that the battery could be rapid-charged up to 80 percent of capacity in 20 minutes, while regular power socket charge would take about four hours.

The Japanese automaker says the scooter is quiet and clean and contributes to creating a low-carbon society.

A spokeswoman said that Honda expects to start leasing the scooter to Japanese companies starting in December.  However, she did not disclose the price tag or production targets.

"The distance it can travel may not be satisfactory for personal use, but eventually we want to make it available for individual customers," she said.

There was no international sales plans announced for the electric scooter, which is Honda's second since it released 200 units in 1994 to Japanese business customers.

Japan's motor giants have been seen as global leaders in low and zero emission cars are being produced to help reduce urban pollution and cut greenhouse gasses.

Toyota's Prius hybrid has been the top-selling car domestically for about a year, and Nissan is going to roll out its Leaf electric car later this year to try and compete with Mitsubishi's i-MiEV.


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