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Can we expect electric motorcycles to become mainstream in the Philippines anytime soon?

It certainly looks like we still have a long way to go before we can even think of ditching our gas-powered two-wheelers.

Can we expect electric motorcycles in the Philippines anytime soon?

In the global market, especially in our neighboring Asian countries as well as a large part of Europe, electric motorcycles have been rapidly increasing in popularity. Several factors are to blame for the sudden increase in popularity of electric motorcycles, chief of which include incentives from the government geared towards accelerating adoption of EVs, as well as a heightened awareness for environmental preservation from the general populace. 

In the Philippine setting, we’re beginning to see electric vehicles—scooters and motorbikes included—popping up here and there. However, none of them have really clicked and sparked a shift in user preferences. Despite rising gas prices, people still opt to drive their cars and gas-powered two-wheelers. That being said, there are a lot of things that need to happen before EVs—be it two or four-wheeled—can become mainstream. Let’s take a closer look, shall we?

Government incentivization

Triumph TE-01 Electric

In order for the Philippines to make the shift to electric mobility, there will need to be a strong enough reason for folks to do away with their gasoline powered vehicles in exchange for electric ones. Similar to what’s going on in India and France, the government could step in and roll out incentivization programs, which are designed to make the ownership of an electric vehicle a lot easier. Some perks offered to EV users in other countries include massively discounted, if not free, yearly registrations. Furthermore, road tax, as well as discounted toll fees also help to lower the cost of EVs. Incentives can also be rolled out to manufacturers and distributors. This could drastically lower market prices of EVs, as taxes can be lowered significantly for electric vehicles. 

Infrastructure development

Yamaha electric scooter

Of course, even if you make electric vehicles accessible to the masses, a major hurdle to overcome would be the infrastructure surrounding EVs. Unlike gas-powered vehicles, EVs require quite a bit longer to juice up, with some of the fastest charging times in the market taking around 15 minutes—and that’s for the best of the best when it comes to tech. As such, massive investments from both the public and private sector will be needed to make this happen. That said, it may be a gamble to place your bets on this happening anytime soon, as our economy continues to be driven by fossil-fuels. 

A long way to go

Harley-Davidson LiveWire

In reality, here in the Philippines, we’re still lightyears away from having electric motorcycles and scooters hit the mainstream. Sure, electric scooters and motorcycles may eventually be launched here, however, chances are that the infrastructure needed for them to be as easily accessible—not to mention as easy to recharge—as their gas-powered counterparts, still has a long way to go. 

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