Spied! Kawasaki electric bike with removable battery

Although Kawasaki hasn’t released an electric prototype to the public yet, Team Green has been busily working on all sorts of EV tech behind the scenes. NDTV has dug up patent images show an important step in that process: an electric Kawi with swappable battery.

The machine in the patent drawings is a full-sized motorcycle, and the battery looks like it would be fairly heavy. This is interesting, because the recently-announced consortium of Japanese manufacturers is working on removable, swappable batteries, but they’re intended to work on commuter-style machines.

Looks like quite a deal, getting the battery out.

The bike here appears to be intended for more sporty, all-round riding, which would require more battery capacity to facilitate higher speeds or longer distances. In turn, that means a bigger battery, which means it’s going to be more expensive, and more difficult to lug around for charging. By the looks of the patent drawing, a user would need a dolly to move the battery around.

That would make this machine potentially unappealing for urban commuters, who’d quickly tire of hauling a heavy battery around every day. The smaller batteries required for 50 cc-equivalent stepthroughs, as already seen in the Honda PCX Electric, would work well in this scenario, which is why the Big Four are working on that plan.

A sporty bike like this would require a decently large battery, if the rider was to expect high performance or range.

However, if you’re at an event like a track day, this oversized battery pack wouldn’t be such a big deal, leaving us to wonder once again: is the future of performance motorcycling going to be restricted to the track?


  1. If you look at the “Related” list, they have been working on this for 7 years. Let’s see something on the road! Honda has a prototype electric dirt bike that they have been showing off. A least they are building something…

  2. I wonder why they don’t use multiple slide in batteries that are easier to handle. Like four 60 volt batteries for a 240 volt system. A lot of higher powered electric tools are using a 2 battery system.

    • Multiple batteries seems like a reasonable solution. Like a cartridge type system. For short range need, could you load half the batteries, for lighter weight, and then load all cartridges for a longer range need?

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