Royal Enfield unveils the electric Himalayan testbed at EICMA 2023
At EICMA 2023, Royal Enfield revealed its first electric motorcycle concept, the electric Himalayan testbed. According to the automaker, this concept represents a glimpse of Royal Enfield's electric future.
This electric Himalayan concept, known as the Him-E, will be used as a testing ground for Royal Enfield's electric components and battery management system before being applied to the company's first motorcycle, which will be unveiled in 2025. To make this electric dream a reality, around 100 designers and engineers have been hired at a Chennai plant designed specifically for EVs.
In a conversation with Mario Alvisi, Royal Enfield's Chief Growth Officer, it was revealed that Royal Enfield is testing this motorcycle in harsh hilly terrain because they believe that if the components work there, they will generally work in normal conditions. He also stated that the electric Himalayan will not be Royal Enfield's first electric vehicle but rather a more urban-focused motorcycle. Electric scooters are not on the horizon. While the Him-E will weigh around 200kg, which is comparable to the weight of its ICE counterpart, the weight distribution will be a challenge, he added. The motor of the Him-E will also not be mounted on the hub because it interferes with the weight balance and steering feedback. In terms of range, RE is targeting around 200-250km on a single charge. Speaking of battery and range, Alvisi confirms that the company will be designing and manufacturing all components in-house. This includes the assembly of the battery pack while the batteries will be sourced externally. The motorcycle's target market will be new riders and urban dwellers who want to avoid the hassles of a clutch and gear lever.
Royal Enfield is also using an in-house battery pack designed in Chennai as the main structural element for the electric Himalayan testbed concept. Furthermore, the Royal Enfield team claims to have conducted extensive wind tunnel testing to improve efficiency and ride quality.
Royal Enfield states that three Him-E prototypes have already hit the road for testing purposes. While only prototype 1 was displayed at EICMA 2023, RE has tested up to prototype 3 in the Himalayas.
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