Hero MotoCorp unveils iON hydrogen fuel cell concept

Hero unveils two electric motorcycle concepts at 2014 Auto Expo

HERO MotoCorp has launched a number of concept bikes at the recent Auto Expo in India, one of which is the iON.

The iON uses advanced lithium-air (Li-air) batteries and a hydrogen fuel extender with super capacitors to power the two-wheeler.

In English, that means the bike has a top speed of 99.4mph and a range of 180 miles on a single charge, going from 0-60mph in five seconds. 

The electric motor doubles up as a brake and delivers its power through a conventional tyre mounted to a less than conventional hubless magnetic wheel.

The bike does away with a normal twist-grip throttle and is fitted with trigger-like buttons fitted onto the handlebars. The controls feature ride-by-wire technology allowing the iON to integrate multiple onboard traffic-sensors and the VSA system (Variable Situational Awareness) to keep track of surrounding flow of traffic and collision detection.

Even steering the iON isn’t conventional, being fitted with ‘M-Link’ and ‘Flex Axis’ technology, the motorcycle is steered by rotating the front and rear wheel, and suspension system, for maximum road-holding and driver confidence.

The firm has also released a lightweight electric urban motorcycle concept called the SimplEcity and a café racer called the Splendor Pro Classic.

The SimplEcity has a 4kW electric motor powered by a lithium-ion battery and a total curb weight of just 35kg. The lithium battery charges on the go through regenerative rear wheel braking but can also be removed for indoor charging.

A ‘Hero SimplEcity ’ smartphone app is used to show vehicle details on the dashboard interface and according to MotorBeam: ‘The lightweight motorcycle is also capable of roll on the side with the walk mode, when you choose to walk or want to move it upstairs.’ Right. You go Motorbeam.

The Splendor Pro Classic café racer is an updated version of one of Hero’s best selling models, the Splendor, and gets retro styling, new handlebars, a café racer round headlight, taillight and cowl, and chrome fittings to the front and rear fenders, indicators and suspension.

Powered by the same engine as the Splendor, the Pro Classic gets an air-cooled four-stroke 97cc engine that makes 7.7hp and 6ft.lb of torque mated to a four-speed gearbox.

Pricing information hasn’t been released on any of the models yet and Hero has not confirmed their longterm plans for the iON or SimplEcity concept.

Thanks to MotorBeam for the pictures.