Ultra Motor India to launch electric motorcycles in 2 years

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Nagpur, Jun 12 (UNI) The New Delhi-based Ultra Motor India will launch an electric motorcycle, which will have the look and ride feel of a conventional bike, within the next two years in the country.

''The motorcycle, which will have good pick-up, a top speed of 80 kilometres per hour (kmph) and a range of 100 kilometres, will be based on the latest lithium-ion battery technology,'' Ultra Motor India Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Managing Director Ganesh Mahalingam told UNI.

''We don't want to give the rider just another electric two-wheeler that has wheels larger than that of a scooter. After all, a customer is looking for acceleration and speed when he buys a motorcycle,'' he said.

The launch of the motorcycle would change the entire two-wheeler industry, especially the 100-cc category, Mr Mahalingam said.

''Here will be a two-wheeler that operates on a battery but retains the characteristics of a motorcycle,'' he said.

The lithium-ion battery, which represented a major technology leap, had a longer life than conventional lead-acid batteries, lasting for up to four years, the CEO said, adding that the company also planned to launch a scooter using a lithium-ion battery, and to introduce innovative material like carbon fibre and new metals to construct the bodies.

Mr Mahalingam said that using an electric vehicle was not only cheap in terms of money and use of power, but also helped the country save precious foreign exchange spent on buying petroleum.

''Our vehicles use one unit of power for a complete recharge of the battery. This works out to 10 paise per kilometre (at 100 kilometres per charge), even assuming a tariff of Rs 10 per unit of power. Power is actually much cheaper in India,'' he said.

The company aimed to sell 60,000 units during the current fiscal, thus hoping to capture approximately 25 per cent of the electric two-wheeler market and 10 to 15 per cent of the overall scooter sector, Mr Mahalingam said. The scooter market was 1.5 million pieces during 2007-2008, of which the company contributed 10 per cent by way of electric scooters, he added.

Ultra Motor India is the Indian arm of Ultra Motor Company (UMC), a global electric vehicle company based in the United Kingdom (UK), which has patented a DC motor technology suitable for two-wheelers.

Besides India, UMC (www.ultramotors.co.uk) has operations in Russia, China, Taiwan and the United States. The company's present range of products includes a variety of low-speed and high-speed electric scooters, with more in the pipeline.

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