Motorcycle manufacturers are still largely ambivalent toward electrification. While Husqvarna recently unveiled its E-Pilen concept, but brands like Ducati are still reluctant to commit to electric platforms. Similarly, Kawasaki joined a pact to develop swappable battery technology with its Big Four counterparts while simultaneously patenting hybrid technology.
With brands concerned about the current range and performance limits of electric motorcycles, it’s no wonder MV Agusta is taking a measured approach with its electric project. The small Italian manufacturer is known for its ultra-exclusive models, but entering the electric arena at this moment wouldn’t satisfy the existing MV Agusta customer according to CEO Timur Sardarov.
"According to our research, performance motorcycles are still the category we belong in and we’re still at least five to seven years away from introducing something that makes sense in terms of brand DNA, performance, weight, and the power density," Sardarov told MCN.
Though numerous OEMs see the industry moving (slowly) toward electrification, many can’t reconcile the current limitations with customer expectations. Harley’s LiveWire was a critical hit, but the brand struggled to move units off the showroom floor. Triumph’s measured rollout of the TE-1 hypernaked electric concept may be the norm moving forward, especially as brands calculate customer reaction alongside research and development.
"We will start working on the electric products from next year onwards, but it’s going to be more of a study on how to get there," Sardarov added.
MV Agusta may be late to the electric game, but that doesn’t mean it can’t catch up in the next five to seven years. The brand recently secured additional funding for expansive new projects, and Sardarov is confident in the company’s engineering team.
"We have a lot of engineering knowledge and MV Agusta’s ratio of engineering employees is the highest in the industry," explained Sardarov. "About 25 percent of the workforce is a part of research and development. No other company has that."
Unfortunately, we won’t see an electric motor behind a stunning set of MV Agusta fairings any time soon. However, Sardarov’s confirmation that the brand is working on such a platform only makes us look forward to seeing how the electric market develops in the next few years.