KYMCO’s interchangeable batteries share power from motorcycles to streetlights

KYMCO President Allan Ko recently shared the company’s new electric vehicle development plans, including the launch of the KYMCO Ionex Smart Streetlights system. Once used, the system would see connected streetlights and traffic lights in smart cities linked to the brand’s interchangeable EV battery stations.

The Ionex brand is the electric vehicle division of Taiwanese motorcycle manufacturer KYMCO. Last year, the company decided to go the Harley-Davidson route, intending to spin off its EV division from its core two-wheeler manufacturing with an IPO.

The foundation of KYMCO’s Ionex range is currently built around its interchangeable batteries and their battery swap stations. The interchangeable batteries were first unveiled at the Paris Motor Show in 2018, where Electrek had a ringside seat for the announcement.

The batteries are designed to allow riders of Ionex electric motorcycles to ride, swap out a battery and keep going.

Today, the company is rolling out even more uses for its KYMCO batteries as an auxiliary power device for smart cities.

With the new KYMCO Ionex Smart Streetlights system, battery-swappable base stations would be integrated into connected streetlights and traffic lights, with a solar power generator at the top of the unit to recharge the batteries.

In the event of a power outage, the batteries in the station below could also send power backwards, which would keep streetlights and traffic lights on.

As CEO Allan Ko explained:

“KYMCO has always been at the forefront of next generation transportation. We’ve been dedicated to creating the most thoughtful customer experience of the electric age, including empowering future drivers to create a smart city.

However, the availability of power access and battery station is an ongoing challenge for all EV manufacturers, especially when acquiring land for electrical installations in cities where land is scarce. rare. With the Ionex Smart Streetlights system, a battery station has multiple functions with limited space required. Therefore, we can provide a solution that mutually benefits smart city operators and consumers. »

We recently witnessed a similar type of application of interchangeable battery stations used for backup power during a regional or national power outage.

Early last month, KYMCO competitor Gogoro was able to operate its thousands of battery swap stations when Taiwan was hit by a massive power outage that affected much of the country.

Millions of people were without power for most of the day, with the blackout also shutting down gas stations that couldn’t run their pumps. But the Gogoro stations, which can support themselves and continue to operate for several days on their own reserve power, continued to operate. Throughout the power outage, riders were able to swap out their batteries and stay mobile during the emergency.

Battery swap stations are hugely popular in Taiwan, where commuters are already turning heavily to two-wheeled transportation and electric scooters have made big inroads to replace conventional gas-powered motorcycles.

Battery swap stations already outnumber gas stations in Taipei and will soon be nationwide.

Ionex battery swap stations and electric scooter

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About Frances R. Smith

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