Honda PCX Hybrid Electric Scooter Launched
Modified On Dec 11, 2020 11:56 AM By Praveen M.
Christened the Honda PCX e:HEV, the scooter is sold in Japan on a made-to-order basis
- The hybrid system in the PCX e:HEV offers an initial surge of torque via the silent starter motor linked to a lithium-ion battery.
- This is only up to 4 seconds after which the petrol-powered engine takes over.
- The silent starter charges the battery when the scooter is decelerating or cruising at a stable speed.
Along with the new Honda PCX160, the Japanese brand has also launched the PCX e:HEV in its home market. As its name suggests, it is a hybrid electric vehicle, a micro one at that. The scooter is priced at 448,800 Yen, which is around Rs 3.16 lakh, making it about Rs 64,400 more expensive than the PCX125.
The Honda PCX e:HEV employs a silent starter like the PCX160. However, this starter motor is also used to accelerate the scooter for the first four seconds when the throttle is opened. For this, the motor takes power from a lithium-ion battery pack, and after four seconds, the petrol-powered motor takes over. The battery pack is charged via the silent starter when the scooter is cruising at a more stable speed or when decelerating. Honda says the electric motor produces 1.9PS and 4.3Nm, improving the torque output by a commendable 33 percent. To achieve a more stable acceleration, the torque output is maximum for the first three seconds and it gradually decreases in the last second.
It comes with two levels of assist for an even fine-tuned riding experience. While the D mode offers optimised electric assistance, the S mode provides a stronger torque surge. It also acts at both small and medium throttle openings for better performance. Both these modes come with an extra idling mode setting, which disables the Idling Stop System. The scooter gets a claimed mileage of 51.2kmpl.
The lithium-ion battery pack is located under the seat, hence, its underseat storage is 6 litres less than the regular variant, at 26 litres. That said, the rest of the features such as keyless operation, apron-mounted storage compartment with integrated USB type-C charging port, and all-LED lighting system are all carried over. Like the standard version, this one too gets a fully digital instrument cluster but with additional information related to the hybrid system like charge, assist level and driving mode.
The rest of the mechanicals like the 12.5PS, 11.8Nm 124cc single-cylinder liquid-cooled motor, telescopic front fork, twin rear shock absorbers are all similar to the recently unveiled new Honda PCX125. But like the PCX160, this one too gets disc brakes on both ends with a single-channel ABS. Thanks to the micro-hybrid system, the scooter weighs the same as the bigger-engined PCX160, at 136kg.
While the concept of a micro-hybrid system with electric assist like the Honda PCX e:HEV may be interesting, it isn’t viable for a cost-conscious market like ours. Hence, we don’t expect Honda to launch this scooter in India. However, Honda may go all out in the pursuit of frugality and environmental friendliness by introducing a proper electric scooter in the future. Fingers crossed until then!