Honda Benly-Es hit Tokyo in March.

In December 2019, we told you about Honda’s plans to bring its Benly-E electric scooters to market across Japan. At the time, Honda said that it only planned to sell 200 of these to business customers per year, to start. Team Red must not be counting its Japan Post plans, then—because the national postal carrier just announced its own Benly-E fleet adoption plans, and they could get pretty big, pretty quickly.

Japan Post plans to roll out 200 Benly-E scooters as part of its Tokyo fleet by March 2020. Clearly, these plans must have been in the works for some time now. As you can see in the video, the smart-looking red scooters are poised and ready to bring your mail if you live or work in an area they service. They even have heated grips!

It looks as though JP will use both the Benly E:I and Benly E:II, since the company mentions both the 87km (54 miles) and 43km (just under 27 miles) range figures. The mail carrier also plans to roll out an additional 2,000 Benly-E scooters throughout the region by the end of FY2020. 

From the city of Tokyo, deployment of these scooters will extend to the greater Tokyo metropolitan area, and eventually to major cities in more rural areas of the country. All told, Japan Post plans to convert a full 20 percent of its Tokyo-based delivery bikes to Benly-E electric bikes by the end of March 2021. That’s a big deal. 

Across Japan, the postal carrier currently has about 85,000 delivery bikes in total on the road. It’s not clear at what rate those other bikes may be converted to electric ones. The desire to implement this change as efficiently as possible is clearly there, but results will depend on how well things go with the initial trial of 200 Benly-Es in Tokyo. With the model’s swappable batteries, plans for how to coordinate battery swap stops for Japan Post delivery riders are already in place.

Sources: Japan Times, Nippon.com