Well, here’s an interesting way to kick off 2024. British magazine MCN has just published an interview with Eric de Seynes, outgoing CEO at Yamaha Motor Europe (he’s about to become chairman of their supervisory board, instead). The interview is filled with all sorts of juicy tidbits that, if true, will prove very inconvenient for those affected by current decarbonization plans in Europe.

For starts, de Seyenes told MCN that despite some attempts by the moto industry to explore hydrogen power, it’s energy-intensive to produce and that makes it “a dream” for now. The OEMs do know how to harness hydrogen as a fuel, even for something as small as a scooter, but de Seynes says it is impractical to use at this point.

What of battery power, then? We already see electric motorcycles and scooters in use in urban centers, and de Seynes says the technology is “manageable” if you’re riding 50 miles a day or less. Since this will work in major population centers, he figures this is where the moto industry will focus its efforts in coming years. Note that Yamaha just announced Enyring, a battery-swap company that will be based in Europe, opening next year.

There are many angles to work out with battery bikes, de Seynes told MCN. And while European leaders (and politicos in many other countries) are bent on cracking down hard on internal combustion engines starting in 2030, with total decarbonization of new vehicles by 2035, de Seynes seems to be hoping for some wiggle room on those dates. For now, he says there is no viable replacement for internal combustion; manufacturers are still looking for a practical “next step,”

Read the whole interview here. If you’re wondering where motorcycling will go in the next decade, you need to know what the big bosses behind these companies have to say!

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