The future of two-wheelers seems to be transforming into electric and now reports out of Japan indicate that Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki and Kawasaki are working together on various standards for electric motorcycles. The four Japanese manufacturers plan to form a consortium that will work together to develop common platforms for battery, charging and other items for electric motorcycles and scooters. It does not necessarily mean that the hardware, like batteries and chargers will be shared across brands, but more likely the power source design and charging infrastructure which can be shared across the brands.
The move is seen as a boost to get more people to ride electric motorcycles and has been designed to prevent many different standards from being established for charging stations and other infrastructure. None of the four Japanese two-wheeler giants have a production electric motorcycle yet, but it's no secret that electric motorcycles will be manufactured and introduced at some stage by the brands, and in fact both Honda and Kawasaki are working on making electric motorcycles as recent patent filings reveal, so we may get to see some sort of electric motorcycle sooner than later, from at least more than one brand.
Among the popular brands, so far only Harley-Davidson has gone to town with its electric range in the LiveWire series. Even in India, the world's largest two-wheeler market, giants like Hero MotoCorp and TVS Motor Company are believed to be working on several electric two-wheeler products although there has been no confirmed news about what is under development. TVS is likely to introduce some sort of electric scooter and Hero is also expected to be working on a prototype at its R&D centre in Jaipur. It will be only a matter of time till we begin to see mainstream two-wheeler manufacturers roll out electric products, and a common and unified infrastructure may be just what is needed to support the electrification of two-wheelers.