Hero And Zero Make A Hero Move

The Splendor maker has announced that it will partner with premium Californian e-bike company, Zero Motorcycles

(Hero Vida V1 e-scooter launched in India at Rs 1,45,000, ex-showroom Delhi. Head here for the launch report.)
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Hero MotoCorp has announced that it is finalizing its partnership with California-based high-end electric bike company, Zero Motorcycles. The focus of this union will be “co-developing electric motorcycles.”

To this end, Hero says the company’s board has also “approved an equity investment up to USD 60 million in Zero Motorcycles.” What this means is, Hero will invest that amount (which is equivalent to Rs 490 crores at the time of writing this article) on Zero by purchasing shares of the company. 

What this could mean to the end user, ultimately, is that Hero might just use its manufacturing prowess and Zero make use of its brain power on the technical side of things, and if all goes according to plan, we might see an affordable performance-oriented electric motorcycle in the future. Perhaps an electric Karizma to take on the Ultraviolette F77? We sure hope so.

This partnership could also allow Zero Motorcycles to enter India with its premium products. High-end electric motorcycles like the Zero SR/F with a claimed combined range of 229km and a cruising capability of 177kmph is sure going to find a lot of buyers with the cash to splurge on. Mind you, despite the partnership, these machines won’t be cheap. The Zero SR/F starts at an equivalent of Rs 21 lakh in the UK, so even if it enters India via the partnership, it could be less expensive, but will still be at the premium end of the spectrum.

The partnership will help Hero MotoCorp massively in terms of R&D knowhow, and this coupled with the learnings from Ather Energy should help the Splendor maker build a strong base for its EV portfolio under the new Vida brand. At the end of the day, this marriage should result in performance-packed EVs meant for the Indian roads that are fairly affordable as well. Who wouldn’t want such a thing? 

Stay tuned as Hero will reveal more details at the Vida sub-brand unveiling and electric scooter launch event on October 7.

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