Ever since Gogoro Inc. and Yamaha Motor Taiwan Co. Ltd. announced that they formed a strategic partnership in 2018, consumers in Taiwan have been waiting in eager anticipation to see what sparks of innovation will come from the collaboration between the two companies. After months of speculations, Yamaha finally unveiled the EC-05, its first e-scooter jointly developed with Gogoro, at a press conference on June 27.
The EC-05 is an originally designed model from Yamaha that adopts the same technology platform as the Gogoro scooters that are now sold on the market. While this vehicle will be offered under the Yamaha brand, its batteries can be changed at any Gogoro’s battery-swapping stations (also known as GoStations). The caveat for the buyers of the EC-05 is that they will also have to sign up for Gogoro’s battery rental plan. The actual production of the EC-05 is handled by Gogoro, and Yamaha will be selling the vehicle through its distribution channels.
The powertrain system of the EC-05 is Gogoro’s G2 aluminum liquid-cooled permanent magnet synchronous motor (S-version) featuring a liquid-cooled MOSFET motor controller. In terms of performance, the EC-05 offers a top speed of 90km/h and can accelerate from a stationary position to 50km/h in just 3.9s. The weight of the vehicle is 126kg with the standard two battery packs and 106kg without. Regarding features offering convenience and smart driving experience, the under-seat compartment of the EC-05 has a storage capacity of 25L. Like other Gogoro models, the EC-05 allows certain functions to be accessed via a smartphone or even an Apple Watch. The connection between the vehicle and the smart device can be established over NFC or Bluetooth.
The EC-05 and the existing Gogoro models are practically the same inside. There is no deviation with respect to the design, storage trunk capacity, and opening mechanism of the under-seat compartment as well as the location and configuration of the battery bay. However, the outward appearance of the EC-05 noticeably departs from the Gogoro models under Yamaha’s revamp. The instrument cluster, which is based on Gogoro’s original, has been raised and moved forward a bit to help keep the rider’s eyes on the road ahead when checking the vehicle speed. The seat of the EC-05 adopts the same structural design and material composition as Gogoro’s original, but the seat cushion is elevated slightly toward the back so as to firmly anchor the rider during acceleration.
The seat trunk of the EC-05 has a storage capacity of 25L. (Source: TechNews)
The instrument cluster of the EC-05 is similar to that of the existing Gogoro models except it is slightly raised and pushed forward. (Source: TechNews)
The headlamp of the EC-05 (Source: TechNews)
The tail lamp of the EC-05 (Source: TechNews)
Yamaha’s statement on the launch of the EC-05 says that the new model is an example of the company’s ongoing efforts to diversify its scooter lineup in Taiwan in order to meet the demands of different types of customers. Yamaha also points out that the EC-05 “represents a great leap” for the company in its expansion into the EV market and helps lay the foundation for the future growth of the users of its e-scooters. Yamaha’s statement suggests that more e-scooter models co-developed with Gogoro are on the way.
Ogawa Shinji, CEO of Yamaha Taiwan, told the reporters at the press conference that the parent company in Japan has also formed an alliance with other major vehicle manufacturers to develop scooters and motorbikes, including electric models. However, the activities of this alliance are confined within the Japanese market and have no influence on the cooperation between Yamaha Taiwan and Gogoro.
Although the EC-05 and the existing Gogoro scooters share the same inner workings, Ogawa believes that Yamaha has its own unique style and a customer base different from Gogoro’s. Therefore, the EC-05 offers another choice for the consumers with lifestyles and needs that do not fit into Gogoro’s target market. Ogawa also emphasized that Yamaha has been investing in its operation in Taiwan for many years and built up an extensive network of local distributors. Customers can always find one of its partners nearby for sales and maintenance services.
The sales target for the EC-05 has been set very high at 20,000 units in the first year of its release, as Yamaha is extremely confident that the new model will enjoy a strong market reception.
There are four colors to choose from for the EC-05: Isolate Blue, Black Diamond, Twilight Blue, and Sugar White. The retail price for the e-scooter is set at NT$99,800, but this can be adjusted depending on the subsidy provided by the local governments. Among the various EV subsidies in Taiwan, the most generous is the program created by Taoyuan City that intends to spur the replacement of older two-stroke scooters with the battery-electric ones. The maximum amount offered under this scheme is NT$33,000, which means that the starting price for the EC-05 could be as low as NT$66,800.
The EC-05 has been available for pre-order since July 1, and its official market release is scheduled on August 1. Yamaha will also be holding more launch events in Taipei City, Taichung City, and Kaohsiung City. Event visitors will have a chance to take part in a prize draw to win the new e-scooter.
The EC-05 comes in Isolate Blue, Black Diamond, Twilight Blue, and Sugar White. (Source: TechNews)
(This article is an English translation of news content provided by EnergyTrend’s media partner TechNews. Photo credit: TechNews)